No 10 dismisses fears of negative campaign as voters say they feel less-informed about EU


Poll finds voters feel less informed about EU vote following government leaflet supporting In vote

THE UK GOVERNMENT has dismissed claims that negative campaigning is damaging the referendum, despite polls showing that voters feel they are less informed about the EU vote than before the dispersal of a UK Government ‘information leaflet’ advocating an In vote to every home in the country.

On Monday (23 May) the UK treasury released a report which claimed that an Out vote could plunge the UK back into a recession, leading First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to criticise Chancellor George Osborne for running a “fear-based” campaign of the kind which damaged the No side in the Scottish referendum.

Quoted in the Herald rebuffing the statement, a spokesperson for the office of the Prime Minister said: “The Government is clear that people are asking for facts. It is right to set out the best assessment based on the most comprehensive analysis of what the economic impact is of the Out vote to leave the EU.

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“But it is also a positive case because the Treasury has also assessed that there is a potential economic upside from remaining in the EU. The reform package negotiated by the PM, the Treasury assessed, could be worth up to four per cent of GDP as a result of, for example, completing the digital single market and completing the market for services.”

However evidence has emerged that the public feel less informed about how to cast their vote on 23 June than they did before the mass leaflet drop, which cost £9.3m.

A poll for the Electoral Reform Society found that the number of people who said they felt either well informed or very well informed fell from 23 per cent at the end of March to 21 per cent at the end of April.

The news comes after the Institute for Fiscal Studies released its own report arguing that an Out vote could mean two further years of austerity.

Picture courtesy Number 10