Conservative party members would rather break up the United Kingdom than stop Brexit
- Conservative members would rather break up the United Kingdom and destroy their own party than see Brexit stopped.
- A new YouGov poll finds hardline views on Europe and the UKs future among those soon to choose the next prime minister.
- A clear majority would rather Scotland and Northern Ireland left the UK and would be willing to accept significant damage to the economy, if it allowed Brexit to go ahead.
- The findings come ahead of the next round of voting in the Conservative party leadership contest.
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LONDON - Conservative members would rather break up the United Kingdom, and destroy their own party, than stay in the European Union, according to a new poll.
The latest YouGov poll of Conservative party members, who will soon be charged with choosing the UK's next prime minister, suggests they would opt to see both Scotland and Northern Ireland leave the UK, if it was the only way to ensure the UK leaves the EU.
Sixty three per cent say they would rather Scotland left the UK if it secured Brexit, with 61% willing to accept "significant damage" to the economy and 59% willing to see Northern Ireland leave the UK.
A further 54% would want Brexit to go ahead even if it meant the destruction of their own party.
The poll suggests that Brexit has hardened the divide over Europe in the party. It found that 46% of members would now be "happy" to have Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage as their leader, with just 40% unhappy.
Overall, Conservative party members now see the Brexit Party as their biggest threat, with 67% describing it as a "big threat" compared to just 34% saying the same of Labour.
Views on Europe appear to have hardened significantly in the race to succeed Theresa May as prime minister, with a majority now saying it would be unacceptable for their next leader to be opposed to leaving the EU without a deal.
Brexit has put strains on the constituent nations of the UK with questions over the post-Brexit border with Ireland and Scottish independence dominating UK political discussion since Britain voted to leave.
The poll findings come ahead of the second round of the Conservative leadership contest.
Tory MPs will on Tuesday afternoon vote on who should proceed to the next round, with the former foreign secretary Boris Johnson expected to win by a large margin.
The remaining candidates will then take place in a televised hustings event on BBC 1 at 20.00 (BST.)
Our Brexit Insider Facebook group is the best place for up-to-date news and analysis about Britain's departure from the EU, direct from Business Insider's political reporters. Join here.
So committed to Brexit are members of the Conservative and Unionist Party that they would be willing to see Scotland (63%) and Northern Ireland (59%) leave the UK in order to secure it. https://t.co/9iJKlB292v pic.twitter.com/4j7bCPg6aK- YouGov (@YouGov) June 18, 2019
Brexit has also reshaped the two-party system in the eyes of Tory members. Fully two thirds (67%) see the Brexit Party as a big threat to them, almost double the number who say the same of Labour (34%) https://t.co/9iJKlB292v pic.twitter.com/eIv9o1aelF- YouGov (@YouGov) June 18, 2019
While Esther McVey had pledged to banish Remainers from cabinet, what matters to party members is not the 2016 vote but that a candidate is willing to back a no-deal Brexit. Only 26-29% could get behind someone who took no-deal off the table https://t.co/Ao8BLH7FfE pic.twitter.com/9S9rAwpX18- YouGov (@YouGov) June 18, 2019