Entry 25

The British government officially sets out its agenda for EU reform

After months of leaks, the changes that the British government wants from the EU are now officially public. They are:

protection of the single market for Britain and other non-euro states;

a target date for reducing the “burden” of red tape;

Britain to be outside an “ever-closer union”

bolstering national parliaments,

and restricting EU migrants’ access to in-work benefits such as tax credits.

This list was in a letter (10.11.15) from UK Prime Minister Mr Cameron to the President of the European Council of Member States, Mr. Tusk.

The leaks had made sure that its content came as no surprise to EU politicians but the negotiations over its contents will be hard fought for months and months ahead.

Within hours of the letter’s release, The European Commission was saying that restricting benefits to migrants was “highly problematic” because that limited the “fundamental freedoms of our internal market”, and amounted to “direct discrimination between EU citizens”.

MR Cameron said he was on ‘mission possible’ but his UK and EU critics started testing him within hours of Mr Tusk opening his letter.

2 thoughts on “Entry 25

  1. Let’s keep looking at the stats about ?Brexit.

    The UK journal of comment (Prospect, December, p.38) reports that pollsters YouGov found a modest but consistent majority in the UK for voting against Brexit during the first six months of this year. But then came the EU troubles of Greek solvency and the ongoing story of refugees desperate to reach Europe. Since then (August) the polls have been neck-and-neck between staying ‘in’ and getting ‘out’.

    Prospect also gives us a somple method for assessing public feeling: fundamental factors (e.g. judgements about UK economic well-being) drive the direction of support but these can be knocked off course by incidental factors (such as refugee crises).

    How underlying trends and extraneous events interplay could be divisive for the result of Britain’s Brexit referendum.

    Liked by 1 person

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