Public Support for EU Plummets

Gatestone: Public Support for the European Union Plunges
Much of the disaffection with the EU among Europeans can be attributed to Brussels' handling of the refugee issue. In every country surveyed, overwhelming majorities disapprove of how Brussels has dealt with the crisis. This includes 94% of Greeks, 88% of Swedes and 77% of Italians. In Hungary and Poland, disapproval of how the refugee crisis has been managed stands at 72% and 71%, respectively. In France, 70% disapprove; in Germany the figure is 67%. The strongest approval of EU management of the refugee crisis is in the Netherlands, but that backing is a tepid 31%.

The EU's handling of economic issues is another huge source of disaffection with Brussels. About nine-in-ten Greeks (92%) disapprove of how the EU has dealt with the ongoing economic crisis. Roughly two-thirds of the Italians (68%), French (66%) and Spanish (65%) similarly disapprove. (France and Spain are the two nations where the favorability of the EU has recently experienced the largest decline.) Majorities in Sweden (59%) and the UK (55%) also disapprove of the EU's job in dealing with economic challenges. The strongest approval of Brussels' economic efforts is in Poland and Germany (both 47%).

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of Britons say they want the EU to return certain powers to national governments. This Euroskepticism is not limited to Britain. In Greece, 68% of those surveyed want some EU powers devolved to the national government, followed by Sweden (47%); the Netherlands (44%) and Germany (43%).

A median of 42% of Europeans across the ten countries surveyed say they want to reclaim some powers from Brussels, while just 19% favor greater centralization (27% prefer the status quo).
Pew Survey: Euroskepticism Beyond Brexit

The public is split nearly 50/50 on its view of the EU. Since most believe a Brexit would be bad for the EU, such an event would likely tip the balance to net unfavorable.

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