Much of the Remain campaign has been focused on the obvious negative economic impact of leaving the EU. Even many who favour leaving accept that there will be damage to the economy and jobs. However, the Leave campaign appears more positive because they can appeal to our emotions: “Britain can be great again”, “We want our country back”. This is easy to do, but it is not an argument for anything. What exactly do we want our country to go “back” to? It is a very nostalgic view of the UK. However, the world has moved on, as must Great Britain, and this is where the positive case for the EU can be put.
Today it is global, multinational corporations that have the most power over us, not “faceless bureaucrats in Brussels”. These big companies need to be in Europe and so they have to abide by EU rules, such as environmental regulations, workers’ rights, consumer protection, etc. Multinationals have budgets bigger than many countries and so if there was no EU all the European countries would be competing for them to come to their country, resulting in a race to the bottom.
It is the EU that has been pushing for better measures to stop tax evasion; It is the EU that tried to stop China dumping steel that resulted in Tata Steel closing the Port Talbot site; it is the EU that has pushed for the protection of bees from damaging chemicals. What is common in all these areas is that it has been the UK that has vetoed these measures!
It is only by working together with our EU partners that we can be strong enough to stand up to multinationals and demand that they pay their taxes, don’t damage our environment and respect workers’ rights. This is the positive case for remaining in the EU.