02 April 2006

Majority want a united Ireland, but not in a hurry

Sunday Business Post

By Pat Leahy
02 April 2006

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usAn overwhelming majority of voters are in favour of a united Ireland, but most are in no hurry to see it, according to the latest Sunday Business Post/Red C opinion poll.

Almost four out of five voters say they want to see a united Ireland, but most of those believe ‘‘other things should have priority’’, according to the survey, conducted among over 1,000 voters.

The picture that emerges from the poll is one which shows that the large middle ground of Irish people are nationalist and avowedly but not fervently in favour of Irish unity. The poll shows that public attitudes to the 1916 Rising are overwhelmingly positive.

Those committed to a united Ireland above all else and those opposed or indifferent to unity with the North are present in roughly equal amounts.

Almost a quarter of voters (22 per cent) said that achieving a united Ireland should be the first priority of the government.

However, more than half the electorate (55 per cent) said they would like to see a united Ireland, but not as the first priority of government.

On 1916, a similar proportion to those who favour Irish unity (80 per cent) believe that the 1916 Rising was ‘‘a positive event’’ in Irish history.

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