The reign of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre may be over, but the Daily Mail has not lost its penchant for falsehood and misinformation, as today’s front page splash shows all too clearly. New editor Geordie Greig has maintained the slavish support for Theresa May which the Vagina Monologue had previously established, and now has come an opinion poll to back up that support. Except … it doesn’t.
After the routinely ghastly sight of Sarah “Vain” Vine sort of backing Ms May - she clearly still needs the money - readers are told “Exclusive bombshell poll reveals Britons back May’s deal … Public say it’s best on offer by a huge margin … And voters insist staying in EU would be a humiliation … SO NOW WILL MPs LISTEN?”
Leaving aside that even those respondents who claim some knowledge of what’s in the deal will not have read any of it, what a perusal of the numbers in the Mail’s supporting article shows is that the paper has been highly selective in its conclusions.
Here’s the Top Line: “Voters want Tory MPs to rally behind Theresa May’s Brexit deal, a poll shows today … According to the Survation survey for the Daily Mail, 52 per cent say her plan is the best on the table. Only 19 per cent disagreed … And 41 per cent said the Commons should back the withdrawal agreement – compared with 38 per cent who want it voted down.” Sounds conclusive. And there is more.
“Asked to choose between Mrs May’s plan and the prospect of a Labour government, voters favoured the Prime Minister by 46 per cent to 31 per cent. Reversing Brexit would damage our national standing, according to 47 per cent”. Got that? Now let’s look at the less convenient numbers, starting with those the Mail article admits to.
To the question “Should there be a People’s Vote - a referendum - on Mrs May’s deal?” the answer is YES by a 14 point margin. Worse, “When asked to choose between the Prime Minister’s plan and staying in the EU, voters opt to remain by 46 to 37. And faced with leaving with no deal and staying in the EU, voters opt to remain by 50 to 40”.
Moreover, to the question “Which of the following scenarios do you think would be best for the UK economy?”, not only does the Government’s deal lose out to Remaining in the EU (the Survation poll data can be seen HERE), but if a referendum had three choices on the ballot paper, Remain would secure the largest vote share (44%) against the Government’s deal (22%) and No Deal on 29%. More than 9% chose Remain as their second preference, which would mean a clear Remain win.
On top of all that, if the Government loses the vote on their deal, the poll has a 7.6% lead for the choice “Theresa May should resign as Prime Minister”. For some reason, the Mail’s article does not mention that. But it does contain the sinew-stiffening exhortation “Changing tack now will only make things worse”.
The Daily Mail still doesn’t want to frighten its readers, but instead convince them that they, and their preferred newspaper, were right all along. The problem is that the poll they commissioned suggests the public are becoming wise to the propagandising.
What you will not read in the Daily Mail. No change there, then.
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