There’s one thing we know for sure: the EU referendum divided voters of all parties. As the party of government the Conservatives had little choice but to embrace Brexit: it was forced upon them (and in their case, the majority of their party’s voters agreed with the majority of Britain). The number of Ukip voters who backed remain was negligible, and with a minimum of fuss the Liberal Democrats have identified that being the party of the 48% was a route back after their near-death experience of the 2015 election.
It is Labour for whom the vote to leave the EU has caused the most acute problems. By a solid majority of 65% to 35%, its 2015 voters backed remain at the referendum. However, the 35% of Labour leave voters are disproportionately the traditional working-class Labour voters the party is struggling to keep hold of. About 70% of Labour remainers are middle class, drawn mostly from the professional classes. Labour leavers are 60% working class, mostly those working in routine occupations or surviving on benefits. Labour remainers tend to be graduates, Labour leavers tend to have few or no qualifications.
If we break down these two Labour tribes by their current voting intention, Labour’s problem becomes even clearer. Among 2015 Labour voters who backed remain, 60% have remained loyal to Labour, and would vote for them tomorrow. When it comes to leave voters who backed them in the last general election, only 45% would vote for the party now. The party has…