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Speaking at the annual Sakharov debate

Speaking at the annual Sakharov debate

The Brexiteer view was championed by me at the annual Sakharov debate in London today, entitled Control taken Back? Brexit, the People and Parliament.

Organised by the European Parliament it was always going to be pro-remainer – with the main speaker Gina Miller, but they listened and debated politely to my alternative view point.

Also on the panel at the Europe House event were academics Dr Ronan McCrea and Matthew Goodwin with BBC news presenter Martine Croxall in the chair.

I re-iterated it was the people's vote in 2016 that delivered the leave result, and that during the referendum campaign the issues of the Irish border, a no deal scenario and leaving the customs union were well covered in the 40 plus debates I took part in.

In the wake of recent Project Fear 2 economic forecasts, I reminded the audience, of around 150, of the unreliability of forecasts which have repeatedly been proved wrong.

I discussed the Irish Border issue, and how I believed the EP had really been taken in by the Sinn Fein narrative about the Peace Process, pointing out that the guarantors of the Belfast Agreement are the British and Irish governments and Northern Ireland’s political parties - none of whom have threatened a hard border.

When the issue of a trade deal was discussed, I explained my view is that money speaks louder than politics, so if we left with no deal, there would be considerable pressure for a trade deal with an independent UK from EU manufacturers and producers.

I cited examples of how plans for Ever Closer Union are moving forward at a quickening pace in the EU and how our previous relationship could not be retrieved, with issues such as the UK rebate being a bone of contention.  In fact, that was one area of agreement from all the panellists – that our relationship would never be as it was.


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