It may not be necessary for the UK to relinquish the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights for the Government’s small craft policy to take effect.
As Henry Hill explained on this site last week, the point can be argued either way. However, the possibility that it will be necessary to leave it for that purpose will certainly have informed this survey finding.
However, conservative activists would no doubt be hostile to both the Court and the Convention in any event.
Many of them will take the same point of view put forward by Michael Howard on this site today, namely that unelected judges sometimes assume the role of elected parliamentarians.
Some will blame Tony Blair’s Human Rights Act; others, the functioning of the Court; still others will think that Parliament will not be truly sovereign until Great Britain leaves the Convention itself.
And three Party members out of ten believe the latter if our poll is correct.
I have suspected for some time that Rishi Sunak may be prompted to promise a change in relationship with the Court in the run up to the next election.
But even if it doesn’t, the scale of the refugee movement in a globalized world, not to mention illegal immigration, is likely to move Europe’s centre-right parties in that direction for years and decades to come.