LONDON, England – Britain will cease to be a United Kingdom within ten years according to 53 percent of Britons polled in a joint BBC/ComRes study.
The belief is based on growing pressure from nationalist groups like the Scottish National Party (SNP) to stay in Europe, indicating that if the UK really does leave the EU, a process may begin that will see the constituent nations split from a no longer United Kingdom.
The poll, released on Friday, also found that 72 percent of the 1,000 people polled believe politicians will handle Brexit badly.
Some 52 percent share a belief that civil servants cannot be trusted and immigration will fall after the UK leaves the EU.
Meanwhile, 47 percent expect the economy will be in a worse state in two years’ time than it is today, while 66 percent believe staying in the EU’s single market is more important than restricting the free movement of labor.
The question of whether Brexit will actually take place, regardless of the referendum result, is still hotly debated.
On July 11, 1,000 lawyers signed a letter arguing that the referendum result was based on “misinterpretations of fact and promises that could not be delivered.”
They argued the result was merely advisory and lawmakers should have a free vote in Parliament before any British leader takes the decision to invoke Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty – the formal EU divorce procedure.
“The referendum did not set the threshold necessary to leave the EU, commonly adopted in polls of national importance, e.g. 60 percent of those voting, or 40 percent of the electorate. This is presumably because the result was only advisory,” the letter says.
“The outcome of the exit process will affect a generation of people who were not old enough to vote in the referendum. The positions of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Gibraltar require special consideration, since their populations did not vote to leave the EU.”
European voices have been less forgiving of the narrow referendum result in favor of exiting the EU. Figures like European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker urged the UK government to initiate Article 50 within hours of the result’s announcement.