British europhiles don’t think very highly of the EU, do they?
Liberal Democrat MEP, Catherine Bearder, recently said to a House of Lords select committee: “My concern is that if we vote to leave that the deal we’d be given would be such that no one else would want to leave. We would bear the brunt of the angry other 27 EU countries”.
If this is not just baseless fear-mongering (bad enough) and Ms Bearder is serious about what she says, then one has to ask an even more serious question: Why would an elected representative support such a capricious, anti-democratic organisation? The thought that the EU would respond to an expression of sovereign will with “angry” reprisals casts the EU in an extraordinarily bad light—and would be reason enough for Britain to disengage from such a grouping.
This pragmatic analysis from LeaveHQ sets the record straight.
Ms Bearder and her europhile associates may be that petty and small-minded but the EU is a rules-based organisation that is bound by treaty and convention to negotiate in good faith with international partners. There should be no great difficulty agreeing a mutually acceptable Brexit deal—though the discussions will be complex and highly technical—provided that both sides are willing to compromise.
Compromise for the EU would assure Britain’s trouble-free exit from political union, without adding to the ongoing crises in the eurozone or compounding the migrant crisis—both created and facilitated by EU policy. Compromise for Britain would assure trouble-free access to and participation in the Single Market as part of a phased withdrawal that recovers national independence and policy control in stages.
From a political perspective it is as simple as that. A short-term compromise on the issue of freedom of movement as part of an interim solution and British civil servants and their colleagues in the Berlaymont spend the two-year negotiating period—specified under the terms of Article 50 of the TEU—picking over the kinds of arcana that need not preclude debate about the future direction of the country.
Making it clear that Brexiteers envision a phased approach to EU withdrawal—and communicating that message to the wider British public—also has the happy consequence of changing the focus of the referendum debate to the question of: Who governs Britain? Which is, after all, what we are really debating when we discuss the matter of Britain’s EU membership.