Over half of the British public believe that the UK should withdraw from the EU if David Cameron cannot negotiate a significant return of powers, a new poll reveals.
The Opinium/Observer survey found that 53% agreed that the UK should withdraw on that basis, while 19% disagreed.
A majority (57%) also believed that the UK's interests are fundamentally different to other member states. However, there was little optimism about the government's ability to renegotiate a return of powers while remaining a member of the single market.
Only 25% of people believed it was likely that the prime minister would be successful in taking powers back in areas such as employment, compared to 47% who said it was unlikely.
Labour voters were more likely to believe it would not happen (48%), but even Conservative voters were split on the ability of Cameron to achieve what is likely to become their party's policy, 37% deeming it likely and 39% unlikely.
There was also a strong feeling that people could support continued membership of the EU if it could be shown to have economic benefits. Two out of five (41%) agreed that being a member of the EU is a price worth paying if it benefits the economy, while 30% disagreed.
Even Conservative voters agreed with this statement with 41% agreeing, compared to half of Labour voters.
Meanwhile, Labour and the Conservatives both see gains in the first poll of 2013, while the Ukip surge may have peaked.
Labour are on 41%, the first time they have passed 40% since the end of October, while the Conservatives rise to 31% after over a month of being on 29%.
Nigel Farage's Ukip drop back to 12%, ending a recent surge but still putting them five points ahead of the
Lib Dems, who drop to 7%, the lowest figure Opinium have ever recorded for the party.
• Opinium Research carried out an online survey of 1,964 British adults aged 18+ from 8-11 January 2013. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria. Full polling results are available here.
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