|REMAIN - Britain should remain in the EU||LEAVE - Britain should leave the EU|
The parties (official or majority position before the referendum)
|The Conservative Party, the Labour Party, the Liberal Democrat Party, the Scottish Nationalist Party, Plaid Cymru, the Green Party||
UKIP (UK independence party), the BNP (British National Party), the EDL
(English Defence League), the DUP (Democratic Unionists, Ulster),
A few people and personalities...
Jo Cox MP, Jeremy Corbyn, George Osborne, all living former
Personalities: Bob Geldof, Benedict Cumberbatch, J.K.Rowling, Elton John, Jeremy Clarkson, David Beckham, Victoria Beckham, Simon Cowell, Bear Grylls, John Le Carré, Daniel Craig, Jamie Oliver
Scientists and businessmen: Stephen Hawking ,thirteen UK Nobel-prizewinners, Richard Branson, Alan Sugar, Mark Carney,
And outside the UK
Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Angela Merckel
Boris Johnson, Nigel Lawson, George Galloway, Michael
Gove, John Redwood, Lord Owen, Jacob Rees-Mogg,
Personalities: Ian Botham, Joey Essex, Katie Hopkins, Elizabeth Hurley, Joan Collins, Michael Caine
Scientists and Businessmen: Richard Desmond, James Dyson
And outside the UK
Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, French National Front's Marine Le Pen1
Voter groups according to opinion poll surveys : majority voting intentions. 2
Young voters (under 30): 63%
Voters aged 30-39 : 58%
Voters aged 40-49 : 52%
University graduates: 62%
Those with A levels or equivalent: 53%
University students: over 75%
Older voters (over 60): 56%
Voters 50-59: 52%
Voters with no qualification higher than GCSE: 57%
How other nations will see Britain if we leave Europe
do you want other nations of Europe to consider Britain after June
23rd? As a reliable partner, or as the one that walked away?
If Britain leaves the EU, we will lose a massive amount of goodwill from people elsewhere in Europe. As well as damaging the UK's own economy, a vote for Brexit is likely to set off a domino effect that damages economies throughout Europe. When this happens, angry fingers will be pointed at Britain, as the nation that deliberately wrecked the EU. And we'll have to live with it for at least two generations to come.
It is pure fantasy to suggest that other countries of Europe will continue to look up to the UK as, in many respects, they do now. They will not. Britain will be isolated, shunned, as the country that turned its back on the rest of Europe.
governments of Europe will not be happy with Brexit; but a British
Brexit will actually be a salutary event for Europe, and even if it
does cause an initial recession in Europe, it will not take long for
other countries to appreciate that Britain was actually the first
country to "liberate" itself from the burden of the European Union.
Britain will once again be seen as the country that saves Europe, as we did by our action in two world wars. Nationalist parties in other countries of Europe will follow Britain and reclaim their sovereignty; eventually there will be no more European Union.
|Leaving the European Union
would allow us to choose our own immigration policy; that is true; but
it is not
going to stop immigration. Asked by the BBC if the Leave campaign's
"chosen immigration" policy would actually guarantee to cut the number
of immigrants, Boris Johnson carefully avoided answering the question.
Then on 19th June, he said; " I am pro-immigration, my friends. I am the proud descendent of Turkish immigrants. And let me stun you, perhaps, by saying I would go further. I am not only pro-immigration, I’m pro-immigrants". And these words from the leader of the "Leave" campaign that has suggesting that it would drastically reduce immigration to the UK.
The fact is that if the British economy is to prosper, it cannot do so without recruiting large numbers of skilled and unskilled workers from other countries. If they don't come from our own continent, Europe, they will have to come from other continents.
In no way will leaving the EU stop immigration to the UK.
EU immigration is a great asset to the UK economy, and people from EU countries pay a lot more in taxes than they receive as benefits.
Immigration is always an emotive issue that appeals to people's sense of nationalism. It is easy, and sometimes satisfying, to blame others for our perceived ills. Of course, in the event of a Brexit, the economic downturn that will follow will make Britain a far less attractive country compared to other parts of Europe, we'll all be poorer, and immigration from the EU will fall of its own accord. But that would really be an own goal.
|We need to reclaim our borders,
and to have the right to determine our own immigration policies for
people from the European Union, just as we control immigration from
other parts of the world.
Immigration from other countries in Europe accounts for just under half of all the immigration to the UK; and at present we cannot control it.
Britain cannot continue to let in an unlimited number of immigrants from other parts of Europe. If we leave the European Union, we will be able to use a "points system" to restrict immigration from the European Union to people for whom there are jobs available in the UK, and people who speak proper English.
Today, for instance, there is a shortage of cooks to work in Bangla-Deshi restaurants in the UK; but restaurant owners cannot recruit from Bangla-Desh. By choosing our own immigration policy, we will be able to cap the number of migrants from other European countries, and bring in more people from Commonwealth countries, such as cooks from Bangla Desh.
Immigration from other parts of the EU, notably from southeast Europe, has driven down wages in the UK. Reducing immigration from the EU will thus lead to higher wages for many unskilled jobs as employers recruit British employees to replace migrant workers who accept lower pay.
We will also keep more of the young people that we educate in the UK, as there will be less opportunity for them to go and work abroad, if there is no longer free movement of people between Britain and the countries of continental Europe.
Britain in the world : a question of reputation and influence
stronger in Europe than out.
We have everything to gain from remaining as a constructive member of the European Union.
Europe is (as long as it remains united) one of the four major players on the world scene, and Britain is one of the three major nations in Europe. Alone we will lose this influential position.
|Britain can have more influence as a sovereign nation than just as a part of the EU. Britain can be an equal partner with the USA, with China, with Russia and the EU.|
Trade and economy: can Britain perform better in the EU or outside it ?
|The vast majority of
economists in Britain and other countries warn that Britain leaving the
EU would be an economic disaster.
The EU is the world's largest economic area. Britain will be more successful economically as part of the EU, than outside it. If we leave, we will still have to take account of EU rules and regulations if we want to trade with the EU; but we will no longer be able to influence them and help to shape them.
A Brexit would mean the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs, as international firms that need a base in the EU relocate offices and plants to Ireland or to the continent.
The "Remain" campaign don't have the monopoly of "believing in Britain". We all "believe in Britain"; but believing in Britain is not some magic trick that will let us defy the economic odds.
|A handful of neo-liberal
British economists believe that Britain could do better by leaving the
British business is hampered by bureaucratic red-tape from Brussels. Even the 80% of British companies that do not export have to follow EU rules on standards, employee rights, union representation, health and safety, paternity leave and other bureaucratic red tape; this is a burden on small businesses.
If we leave the European Union, we can bring down the cost of labour in the UK, so that firms can hve manufacturing plants here in the UK, rather than exporting their production facilities to countries with low labour costs.
Besides, big companies will want to keep their operations in the UK and will only relocate as little as possible, as Britain without EU red-tape will be a more attractive place to do business.
We need to believe in Britain.
EU intervention and interference, and the concept of the EU
the last 40 years, membership of the EU has actually been very
beneficial to the UK. When we joined back in 1976, Britain was "the
sick man of Europe". Becoming part of the world's largest union of
independent states has helped our economy, our wealth, our science and
development, and our status on the world stage.
Much of the "interference" that the "out" campaign so dislikes is actually legislation to protect the rights of ordinary people, to protect the environment, to protect consumers, to force phone companies to reduce roaming charges, or to require greater transparency from financial operators to combat money-laundering and tax evasion.
In addition, the biggest burdens on business in the UK today have nothing to do with the EU. For instance", the new "living wage", a major cost to business, is intervention by the UK government, not by the EU.
The EU is a force for peace and stability in a continent that has long been fractured by wars and national rivalries. It was set up, and still functions, to defend and promote peace, democracy and democratic institutions throughout Europe.
The last thing Europe wants is to return to being a continent divided by rival nationisms, as it was in 1914 or 1939, with the consequences that we all know. Many Brexiteers seem to imagine that a Brexit will turn the clock back to some golden past, when Britannia ruled the waves and the Empire.But no amount of imagining will bring back the past.
intervention, and even more so EU intervention, interferes with natural
market forces, therefore is bad for the economy. By leaving
EU, Britain will take
and be able to get rid of a lot of unwanted Brussels legislation in
fields such as consumer protection or employee rights.
Freed from unnecessary bureaucratic intervention, British firms will become more efficient and profitable.
The European Union is an attempt to deprive the nations of Europe of their independence and sovereignty, by the creation of a massive European superstate run by unelected bureaucrats. Boris Johnson likens the European Union to Adolf Hitler, in the way that it is trying to unite Europe under a single authority.
Brexit and business
businessmen, and in particular the leaders of exporting companies and
large companies, agree that leaving the EU would seriously damage their
business and employment opportunities in the UK.
There are some who feel "Big business wants the UK to remain in the EU for its own interests, for its big profits." Well maybe it does... But profitable businesses create jobs; and their profits mostly go to big investors, notably our pension funds.
A Brexit will hit our big companies and our small ones; and while it may mean some people don't get fat-cat bonuses, a far bigger impact will be that a lot of ordinary people lose their jobs, or can't get the jobs that have been moved to the Continent or to Ireland. And pensions will be smaller if business are less profitable.
minority of business leaders and company owners dislike the EU because
it imposes an extra cost, and extra rules on their freedom to act.
These include EU workplace legislation, social legislation, employee
standards. Some business leaders also complain that EU
legislation restricts Britain's freedom to set up bilateral free-trade
agreements with non-Eu countries.
James Dyson (whose company has moved all its manufacturing from the UK to southeast Asia) wants to leave the EU on account of European vacuum cleaner energy regulations, and because the EU requires vacuum cleaners to be equipped with different types of plug for different countries.
Jobs, mobility and employment
|The free movement of people
within the EU has been of massive benefit to Britain. Many of our firms
and public services could not survive without recruiting
workers from other parts of Europe. Actually, EU citizens working in
Britain pay more in taxes than they take back in benefits. And millions
of Britons live and work in other countries of Europe, where they enjoy
the same services and benefits as other EU citizens. If we leave the
EU, all this will change.
Many firms depend on labour from the EU to do jobs that British workers cannot or do not want to do.
There are some 65,000 EU nationals claiming jobseeker’s allowance in the UK : but that is only half the picture. 2.5% of Britons who live in other EU countries are also claiming unemployment benefits in those countries, notably in Ireland, Germany and France.. which is a similar rate.
|The free movement of people
within the EU has led to millions of people from Europe coming to
Britain to benefit from our welfare system. They put pressure on our
hospitals, our schools, our housing, our roads; and ordinary British
people are having to bear the cost of this .
The influx of workers from eastern Europe has been driving down wages in some sectors, and ordinary British workers have suffered from this. Leaving the EU will allow wages to rise again.
Healthcare and Brexit
9 June 2016. Tory
Sarah Wollaston, chairman of the House of Commons health select
committee, has quit the "Leave" campaign over its untrue
about the health service, and will vote to remain in Europe.
Remaining in the EU is vital for the National Health Service. The NHS benefits from EU research grants, and from the free movement of specialists within the European Union. Many of our leading specialists are from other EU countries. The argument that EU immigrants are breaking the NHS is a lie. Thanks to the EU health-care agreement, hundreds of thousands of UK citizens have a free EHIC card, and thus get treatment on health services in other countries of the EU. Arrangments are reciprocal. Everyone benefits, including holidaymakers. "Healthcare tourism" is very marginal... and it works both ways.
|According to the Daily
immigration has put a huge strain on A&E waiting times."
Leaving the European Union will reduce
pressures on limited resources. A number of leading figures in the
"leave" campaign have misgivings about the way the health service is
According to Nigel Farage, there is plenty of room for cuts in the NHS; and according to Boris Johnson, people should be made to pay for certain services so that they "value them more". Tory MEP Daniel Hannan claimed on American television that the NHS has been a "60 year mistake", and that a national healthcare system is not a good way to run healthcare in any country.
The cost of belonging to the EU
|Belonging to the EU costs us
of our wealth: domestic taxation in Britain, by contrast, costs
us 35% of our wealth – 100 times more. The small cost of
belonging to the EU is actually is vastly outweighed by the benefits of
membership. Though leaving the EU might allow some of our
richest people to get even richer, it would make most ordinary people
The figure of "£360 million a week" banded about by the Leave campaign is seriously wrong, as it does not take account of what we get back. The real figure is less than half.... and a good bit of that pays the salaries of the thousand or so UK nationals employed by the EU civil service
|Belonging to the EU costs
Britain billions of pounds each year, money that could far better be
spent on reducing taxation, or spending more on our public services.
There is no point at all going on spending all this money to pay for
unnecessary bureaucrats in Brussels, or to pay the salaries
and expenses of MEPs.
The consequences of leaving the EU
|For the last 70 years,
Britain has basked in an aura of goodwill from other nations in Europe,
as the nation that saved Europe. In 1939, inspired by great Europeans
like Churchill, we went to war for Europe and we didn't count
the cost. With the help of our allies, we won, and Europe has been
grateful to us ever since.
If Britain leaves the EU, Britain will change from being the nation that saved Europe to the nation that abandoned it, or maybe that contributes to a major crisis in the EU, by unleashing nationalisms all over the continent.
It is pure wishful thinking to imagine that in this new Europe, the UK will benefit from any special favours. Europe will not listen to us, and we will not be in a position of force to make them do so. As a small island off the coast of a disgruntled Europe, our future could be very bleak.
According to the IMF, a British exit from the EU would be likely to have serious consequences for both Sterling and the UK stock market, damaging investment, pensions, and the UK's balance of trade. Experts suggest that sterling could rapidly fall by 10 -20 % against the dollar.... which will make everyone in Britain poorer, by considerably increasing the cost of foreign holidays and everything we import.
In addition, if Britain leaves the EU, the remaining countries will certainly lay out the red carpet to attract international investment away from Britain and back into the EU.... and to develop an international financial centre in the EU that will eventually rival and maybe overtake London.
It would take a few years, but it is foolhardy to imagine for one minute that the EU would just acquiesce to having Europe's major financial hub in a nation that is no longer part of the Union.
|Britain has everything to
gain from leaving the European Union, then negotiating lots of
bilateral trading deals, visa deals and citizen exchange deals with
Freed from EU rules and bureaucracy, the UK will be free to negotiate deals that are in Britain's best interest, and this will be far more beneficial to British business than being obliged to set up international deals in the framework of the European Union, as happens now.
Since Europe exports more to Britain than Britain exports to Europe, European countries are going to do whatever we ask them to do, to make sure that their firms can still compete in the UK market. They are not going to erect trade barriers.
If Britons vote to leave the EU, there will quite likely be short term consequences on the stock market and for the value of sterling; but these will not last long.
A fall in the value of Sterling will make the cost of holidays abroad more expensive, and will drive up the cost of imported goods - cars, computers, electrical goods, but not by a lot. But on the other hand, it will make British goods cheaper, so our exporting companies will be more competitive in international markets, which will generate more jobs.
As for the IMF, their predictions are not always right.
Besides, London is so well established as the world's leading financial centre, that this will not change whether we remain in the EU or leave it.
Collateral consequences - the future of the UK and Europe
|All opinion polls show that
Scots and Welsh voters will vote strongly in favour of remaining in the
Any victory of the "leave" campaign in the UK as a whole would open the floodgates towards victory for Scottish nationalists in a new Scottish Independence referendum, leading to a breakup of the United Kingdom within maybe less than five years. Nicola Sturgeon has already said that a new referendum could be organised.
This will leave England even more isolated – on the outside of Europe and no longer even a United Kingdom.
If Britain leaves the EU, the whole EU may rapidly collapse... which will have catastrophic geopolitical and economic consequences for Britain, Europe and the West in general
Britain leaves the EU, this will weaken the cohesion of the EU and
encourage Eurosceptics in other countries to demand referendums too.
The new EU that emerges from this will be much weaker and
attractive than the UK. which will benefit from being out. In
this new order, the Scots will prefer to remain with a stronger
independent UK, than with an increasingly uncertain European Union.
If Britain leaves the EU, other countries with strong nationalist movements may follow, leading quite quickly to a collapse of the European Union. This will allow all the nations of Europe to regain their sovereignty and take back their authority – which will be a good outcome
|See also :||Why Britain needs Europe||New: Britain Brexits - who's to blame?|