The European Union: The Four Forces Driving the Leave Campaign

By: Freddie Saunders, Student Voices writer

There are four forces currently building momentum behind the ‘Brexit’ Campaigns.

A new online survey conducted by Opinium identified the Brexit side at 43%, 4 points ahead of the Remain side, who are at 39%. The survey also found 18% to be undecided and 1% who refused to identify their position.

Earlier in the year when David Cameron was ‘fighting’ for a better deal for Britain in Europe, there was a large amount of scepticism around what he would be able to achieve, and parties, including his own, saw this negotiation as simply a healing exercise, to try and heal and reduce the split within the Conservative party on the issue of membership of the European Union. When Boris Johnson rebelled against his friend, battle lines were drawn, and it seemed that the majority of Parliamentary politicians backed Mr. Cameron to remain, but not necessarily his vision of Europe. Boris, on the other hand, chose to represent a minority of Parliamentary politicians, but a majority of grassroots Conservatives.

Since then, through a range of polls, online surveys and other outlets we have seen the Remain side take a lead in terms of public opinion, and the likely public outcome come June 23rd, when the United Kingdom will decide whether or not to Remain or Leave the EU.

However, the most recent poll from Opinium, as well as other outlets have identified that the Brexit side is moving into the lead. Despite, the fact a proportion of people, who are undecided, did say they would most likely vote to Remain, they are ‘swing’ voters, and could be persuaded by either side of the battle, before June 23rd.

A range of political analysts, journalists and academics have all attempted to identify how the campaigns are picking up support, and maintaining it. The Remain campaign has been criticised of only throwing around the ‘economic’ argument, which has been perceived and described as big businesses trying to save money, rather than the economic argument for local Bob or Hannah. The Remain campaign has also been criticised of recent of scaremongering, regarding the future state of the United Kingdom if the public decided to vote out. These factors most definitely have played a part in terms of aiding the Leave campaign to gain momentum as June 23rd gets ever-closer.

Brexit backers have stated the Steel industry crisis in the UK as a sinking ship, as the United Kingdom are unable to safeguard or intervene within the industry, as the USA and Canada have done in reaction to cheap Chinese steel, due to EU regulations.

On the other hand, I believe there are four flagships, which are allowing the Leave campaign to sail ahead for the time being and these are:

1. Economic

The Brexit campaign are doing an effective of job of informing the public of how the EU is affecting the UK economy in more ways than one. An argument which is regularly put forward over the years, especially in coastal towns, is the EU regulations imposed on local fisheries, which affects jobs and fishing practices on the coast of the United Kingdom. More recently, the Brexit campaign has advertised Boeing’s announcement of moving their European headquarters to the UK, despite the looming worry regarding the potential lack of investment the UK may face if deciding to Leave. Additionally, Brexit backers have stated the Steel industry crisis in the UK as a sinking ship, as the United Kingdom are unable to safeguard or intervene within the industry, as the USA and Canada have done in reaction to cheap Chinese steel, due to EU regulations.

2. Immigration

Immigration is an argument which is one of the most decisive factors for all EU voters, but this issue is particularly growing Brexits backing. Recently, we have seen destructive and saddening terror attacks in Paris and Belgium, which is causing people to really question the EU immigration policy of ‘open borders’. People want assurances of their security, and we are seeing recent protests in Dover, of people protesting against further immigration, including helping people from Syria, as people perceive them as economic migrants, as they have not decided to take refuge in closer countries. To add to this growing concern, the sexual assaults that took place in New Years in Germany, did not help the EU’s case for their current immigration policy. People are also greatly concerned regarding the upcoming membership of Turkey to the European Union, as Turkey are geographically located next to Syria, and on their joining of the EU, would be part of the EU immigration policy.

3. Patriotism

The issue of patriotism, I believe, is an issue which has not been covered in the national media as a factor for people voting to Remain or Leave the European Union, but I think it is having a major influence, and the Brexit campaigns are using it as a tool. Statements such as: “United Kingdom is the fifth largest economy in the world”, as well as emphasis on the rich history of the United Kingdom is making voters resent the unelected ‘bureaucrats’ of the European Union much more. This as well as the clear democratic deficit of the European Union, which continues to encroach on the laws and foundations of the United Kingdom.

4. Fighting the State

As all major political parties are backing the vote to Remain within the European Union, other than UKIP, people are seeing this opportunity to rebel and protest against the state. It is almost as if it this image of the Westminster bubble, and big businesses fighting against the little people within the country, and as a result I think the idea of leaving the EU, which was previously viewed as this xenophobic action is being largely withdrawn, and instead leaving the EU is about fighting for the everyday people, almost like Braveheart but in a referendum.

We still have over 8 weeks until the ballot box and polling stations open, and we decide to Remain or Leave, but the pressure is on for both campaigns to win over voters, and secure their ideal result. Anything can happen from now to then, and the campaigns can only become more desperate as the deadline closes, but as it stands Brexit are leading.

Meet the author:

Freddie Saunders
My name is Freddie, I am currently studying Business Information Systems at Cardiff University, and I am originally from Greenwich, London. I have interests in Politics (Conservative Party Member), Football (Charlton Athletic FC Fan), Technology, Business and Economics. Currently at University I hold a few positions which enrich my student experiences, including: Student Representative, Education Executive Committee Member, and Science Technology Engineering Mathematics Ambassador. Starting in June, I being my Year Placement at General Electric (GEHC) as a Business Intelligence Analyst at The Grove
Centre in Amersham, Buckinghamshire. Hopefully, I can utilise all these difference interests, aspects and experiences to create interesting and dynamic articles which readers of Student Voices will enjoy.

Twitter: @FreddiePSS

The European Union: The Four Forces Driving the Leave Campaign The European Union: The Four Forces Driving the Leave Campaign Reviewed by Student Voices on 13:48 Rating: 5

No comments:

Share your views here! But read our Comment Policy first, found on the about page.

Powered by Blogger.