I Support Andy Burnhams Call for Early EU Referendum!

IMG_0210 Rita Potter and Andy Burnham 22-03-2015

Some change is now taking place within the politics that is now surrounding the Labour Party leadership election..

Andy Burnham, one of the favourites to be next Labour leader, has issued a surprise call for David Cameron to bring forward his plans for an EU referendum.

I welcome this move.

Sadly it was not Labour Party policy before the General Election. This is what I wrote back in 2013. Councillor Phil Bateman MBE -Wednesfield North (Labour Party) 4 June 2013 · Lets be clear on the European Union, coming out would be an act of folly! There would be a huge impact on our economy and there would be more job losses. But the British people and the Labour Party need to have a referendum now! We need to have it quickly so that the economy is not further damaged, and investors put off by the unknown. For goodness sake Ed, lets have a referendum at least we can then actively campaign both to stay in Europe, and win the next election. I am for a referendum tomorrow!”

Sadly that call was not heeded then by Ed Miliband or Labour.  In fact Labour has consistently argued against holding a referendum.

But what has happened is that Ukip has benefitted greatly by this mistake, they received four million votes in the general election campaigning on an anti-EU basis. They grew strong on the back of the LP not going to the Referendum early.

I am glad that Andy Burnham has now conceded that there is “clearly an appetite” for a vote on Britain’s membership of the European Union. It is a much needed thoughtful approach. I make it clear, I am very much for Britain remaining in the European Union.

The uncertainty about Brexit is not something UK industry or our economy needs. Therefore I support Andy  Burnham’s call today, as I did in my call back to Ed on the 4th June 2013 (Source Facebook). Lets get this referendum over quickly, lets get our case over to the British people now without delay.   Andy’s  demand for a referendum to be held by next year in order to avoid “a prolonged period of uncertainty and argument,” is something I support strongly and I hope this stance gains the support of our  local population and local political observers.safe_image Election!

Phil Bateman

Phil Bateman is Married to Mary and lives in Wednesfield North. He was a long serving local politician having served previously on the now defunct West Midlands County Council... read more

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