Britain and its exit from the European Union (EU), also known as “Brexit,” has been the subject of discussion for some time now. Brexit brings up some big questions about what Britain’s future — in or out of the European Union — would actually look like.
The fronts are parting on Britain’s political stage about whether or not to stay in the EU. The British Cabinet has formally agreed to go ahead with a campaign for Britain to stay in a “reformed” EU, although several of its ministers openly support Brexit.
“David Cameron and Boris Johnson are set to clash in the Commons as the Prime Minister lays out his case for staying in the European Union,” says an article in the The Telegraph.
The burden of decision
David Cameron has called for a referendum about Britain’s membership in the EU, which is scheduled to take place on June 23rd, 2016.
The majority of the cabinet gave their heads up to support the deal that was agreed on “in Brussels with 27 other EU leaders reforming Britain’s relationship with the rest of the bloc,” according to The Guardian.
The Cabinet has agreed to recommend that the UK remains in a reformed European Union. I will be making a referendum announcement shortly.
— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) February 20, 2016
Cameron said while everyone would be able to campaign freely, the ultimate decision would still lie in the hands of the British people, says The Guardian.
“We are approaching one of the biggest decisions this country will face in our lifetimes: whether to remain in a reformed EU or to leave. The choice goes to the heart of the kind of country we want to be and the future we want for our children,” Cameron said in a public speech.
Chiseling out the details
The British prime minister is preparing to present his plan for the June 23 referendum to the Parliament. The referendum will formally deal with the debate whether Britain should remain a member of the European Union or exit it.
While Cameron is campaigning for a continued membership of Britain in the EU, this membership does not come without conditions, as Cameron’s proposals show.
The main areas of focus for the British PM, have so far been:
- The wish for a tighter control on British borders
- A regulation of welfare payments to immigrants
- Support in terms of protection from the Euro Zone
- More liberty in the financial sector
Cameron wants Britain to have the freedom to ‘opt out of an EU legislation.’
According to an article by RT, this would prevent Britain from being formally and legally bound to any political and legislative regulations the European Union would make in the future.
Those who want to exit
Mayor Boris Johnson announced on the weekend that he is in favor of leaving the European Union, while Cameron wants Britain to remain part of the “28-nation bloc,” says an article on ABC.
Even Cameron’s Conservative Party is split on whether to stay or exit the EU, with “at least six of the 23 Cabinet ministers” in favor of leaving the EU.
Cameron argued that leaving the EU might seem like a good idea at first, but with certain threats to the security of Britain in mind, it might be safer to stay a member of the EU.
“Leaving the EU may briefly make us feel more sovereign,” he said, but argued the U.K. would be “stronger, safer and better off” within the EU, according to an ABC article quoting Cameron.
Cameron might now be facing the toughest time of his term as British prime minister as the Brexit conflict and its outcome carries a historical magnitude. For the British people, the question whether to stay in the EU or exit it might be less a question of political solidarity than a inner conflict of identity.