Keith, Graham and Iain

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Lib Dem councillors make positive case for Britain to remain in EU

by Iain Roberts on 19 May, 2016

Graham, Iain and Keith are urging local people to vote for Britain to remain in the EU in the 23rd June referendum.

“We are better off, stronger and more influential inside the European Union,” said Iain. “By staying in it your family and mine will be better off and safer. Our children will have more opportunities to work and study across the continent. We’ll be better able to tackle environmental problems – pollution doesn’t respect national borders.”

“There have been a lot of claims thrown around by both sides,” said Keith. “It’s hard to know who to believe. One thing almost everyone agrees on is that we will be poorer outside the EU than in – the disagreement has been about how much poorer. The experts, the international organisations, the world leaders – all agree that Britain will be wealthier and more influential in the EU.”

The Lib Dems will be campaigning for an IN vote on 23rd June.

“It’s important that young people vote in the referendum – this decision will affect them the most,” said Graham.

Anyone who is registered to vote in normal elections is also registered to vote in the referendum. If you are not registered already, you can get your vote here.


41 Responses

  1. Phil Johnson says:

    Spoken like a true Tory.

  2. David Booth says:

    I would very much wish to be ruled by people I can remove instead of faceless unelected bureaucrats.
    The EU Commission who propose legislation are unelected and unaccountable. EU Finance Ministers have not exactly done much for the countries that suffered most since 2007/2008. When will EU Accounts be signed off?
    TTIP – no thank you. I hope President Hollande will put an end to it all.
    The U.K. needs to put together, without interference, a 30 to 40 year plan to cope with our ageing and expanding population. The money we will save from leaving, scrapping HS2 and Trident may just be able to provide the necessary funding.
    Free movement of labour will simply make the urgent social project mentioned above an impossibility.

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Hi David,

      The EU accounts have been signed off every year – it’s a myth that they haven’t. The EU Commission might propose legislation (as the civil service does in the UK) but it’s our elected representatives who have to agree to it.

      • Bruce says:

        Half-truth again Iain – they have been signed off but always qualified. In other words they cannot sanction them as being correct.

  3. Harry Bull says:

    I get the feeling that Iain, Graham and Keith are parroting LibDem opinion and policy; I for one would be much happier if this forum was used merely for local matters and leave the general population to make its own mind up on national matters without any urging from our local councillours.

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Hi Harry – we are telling local people what our views are on an issue which will affect every single person in Cheadle and Gatley. I could not in good conscience do otherwise.

  4. Robert Cohen says:

    The truth of the matter is, sadly, if we stay in we know where we are and, to some degree, the future. If we leave, which most people deep down would really like to do (based on dozens of conversations I’ve had in the last year) we don’t know what the future will hold. My heart says out, my head stay in. My parents generation (and older ones) who voted in favour of joining the ‘Common Market’ feel that they were duped, which they certainly were. It’s up to our political leaders, therefore, to fight our corner from within.

  5. Jb says:

    This country managed very well before it joined the EU and it will again if it leaves the EU.

    I prefer that we regain our independence and make our own decisions.

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Yes, it will manage. If you or I lost our job and had to take one where we worked longer hours for less money we’d manage. We wouldn’t be happy about it though. When you say “make our own decision”, who is it that’s going to make those decisions. You? Me?

  6. Halifaix says:

    Many of the people who want to remain are protected from the negative effects that mass immigration from the EU has brought us, they live in the leafy suburbs, have good jobs or are independently wealthy.

    However, try living in parts of the country where you can’t get your child into your local school, of if you can the school may have to manage 20 first languages other than English, you can’t get social housing and you are competing against more a more low skilled labour for a job, and you may think differently about the benefits fi Europe.

    I’m voting out and with good conscience

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Except all the evidence we have is that EU migrants are not taking jobs from local people and they are contributing far more in taxes than they take out. Outside the EU we’ll be poorer, with fewer jobs and having to pay higher prices. So no, I wouldn’t want that on my conscience.

      • Halifaix says:

        Iain – There is no such evidence, also I take it also there is no evidence the EU migrants take up school places either

        • Chris Reynolds says:

          Well said. I would love to see the ‘evidence’ Iain is talking about. As far as jobs and school places are concerned, we see the real evidence every day, in Starbucks, at schools and pretty much every shop job, construction site and everywhere else. The point being, with the prospects of a continued stay in the EU making this worse, leaving is the only sane option. I also think this is crossing the line as far as ‘local’ affairs are concerned and when you lot can’t even plan a diary around local road repairs over the next 12 months, you hardly broadcast competence in managing European affairs.

  7. Malcolm Ealand says:

    I want to live in a democratic society no one ruled by faceless and unelected people. We will be much better off out of the EU which will collapse in the not to distant future. If we stay in we might just as well get rid of our politicians and the houses of parliament as all our laws will be made by Germany. Do we really want to say goodbye to all the democratic values this country has laid down over hundreds of years.

    • Iain Roberts says:

      I agree on democracy, Malcolm. The EU isn’t perfect (but then neither is Westminster). However, the EU is democratic. Decisions are made by the Council of Ministers and the directly-elected MEPs. At the moment a small proportion of our laws (around 12% I think) originate from the EU.

      • Bruce says:

        Half-truth again Iain – EU regulations and regulations influenced by or related to the EU — accounts for 53%

  8. Harry Bull says:

    We have our own dream and our own task.
    We are with Europe but not of it.
    We are linked but not combined.
    We are interested and associated but not absorbed.
    If Britain must choose between Europe and the open sea,
    She must always choose the open sea.

    Winston S. Churchill

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Unfortunately, that quote is made up, Harry.

      This one isn’t though – it’s from a 1946 speech Churchill gave in Zurich

      “Yet all the while there is a remedy which, if it were generally and spontaneously adopted, would as if by a miracle transform the whole scene, and would in a few years make all Europe, or the greater part of it, as free and as happy as Switzerland is today.

      What is this sovereign remedy?

      It is to re-create the European Family, or as much of it as we can, and provide it with a structure under which it can dwell in peace, in safety and in freedom.

      We must build a kind of United States of Europe.

      In this way only will hundreds of millions of toilers be able to regain the simple joys and hopes which make life worth living.”

      • Harry Bull says:

        Keith says almost everyone knows we’ll be worse off out – what planet is he living on.
        Iain you say the EU accounts have been signed off – then why hasn’t this been made abundantly clear ? The fact that they haven’t been signed seems to be the predominant opinion.
        I’d like your ideas about what you’d propose to do with Cheadle & Gatley’s share of 350 million quid a week – or don’t you believe that either?

  9. Bruce says:

    Notice there is no mention of the biggest threat to the UK – immigration! Strange how Iain leaves it out

    There is only one sane option – vote LEAVE. The EU is undemocratic with a currency that has no country!

    Read this

    The LibDems want Stockport to take in thousands of migrants – where do they all go?

    read this

    The NHS is in dire straits – if we remain there will be millions more arriving – something has to give.

    Greece is bankrupt and Italy is almost as bad. Unemployment across the EU is MUCH HIGHER than the UK. Schengen is collapsing – do we really want to part a corrupt EU?

    • Iain Roberts says:

      Hi Bruce – you’re right that if you want to live in a poorer country with fewer jobs but also slightly fewer immigrants then voting to Leave the EU might well achieve that. I don’t, as it happens and I don’t want that future for my children.

      • Bruce says:

        Iain – is ‘fewer’ a euphemism for millions?

      • Halifaix says:

        iain – there is no evidence there will be fewer jobs, only people opinions.

        And there is more to life than an economy, as I said earlier, if you can’t get your child into a local school or that school has to manage 20 different first languages other than English, you can’t get social housing and you struggle to get a job because you are competing with 350,000 extra people a year, what relevance is a few fractions of a percentage of GDP.

        However, as I said at the begging there is no evidence, there are only opinions. If there is evidence show it

  10. Ken says:

    I totally agree with the comment made by Halifaix.
    Vote out and you may get rid of Cameron and some of his merchants of doom.

  11. John Hartley says:

    I’ll be voting to stay in. The EU provides protection for ordinary workers against being forced to work excessive hours, equal rights at work for agency and temporary emplyees and a whole raft of other issues. Those important will be significantly at risk if we leave and workers rights are at the mercy of a Conservative government in the pockets of big business.

    Better off out? Someone’s having a laugh!

    • Halifaix says:

      Norway is outside of the EU, do you really think their workers’ right are compromised because of it.

      Please stop listening to Project Fear, or at least if you do, question it.

      Iain, like all project fear supporters, keep stating that the evidence support the ‘in’ campaign, but the reality is there is no such evidence, only opinions. So when anyone from Project Fears states ‘evdidence’ they must be lying because until we are outside of he EU the evidence doesn’t exist.

      The only evidence that does exist is the actial number of EU immigrants that are here, and the numbers that have the right to come here

      • John Hartley says:

        Norway is not the UK.

        And I am more than happy to accept that Priti Patel is an honest politcian who believes what she says. The threat to workers rights by an unconstrained Conservative government, working hand in hand with the multinational companies, is plain for anyone to see. You only have to read what Patel has said.

        • Halifaix says:

          John – it does nothing to help the workers rights when every year we have a net gain of 350,000 people to compete with. Wages and jobs terms and conditions are based on supply and demand

          high supply of labour = worst terms and conditions
          low supply of labour = better terms and condition.

          So if you are concerned about workers rights, vote out

  12. Arthur Lampkin says:

    I feel this is to emotive to be part of this discussion I believe everyone has a view on this point but feel it is better on your own individual Facebook or Twitter or whatever other social media site you use this is not the place for it. I personally think you have overstepped the mark here, just like the Conservatives are doing.

  13. Roy says:

    Iain once all the sane people had voted for out and to control our own Nation.
    Then Iain You Graham and Keith can if you wish emigrat to that wonderful placed called the EU and good luck to you but I don’t think any of you will leave.
    I don’t want to pay over the odds to belong to a club that wastes my money Enough Said.

    • John Hartley says:

      You’ve got it the wrong way round I’m afraid, Roy.

      At present, our councillors could indeed choose to go and live in that wonderful place called EU. Some 3 million other Britons already work and live in other EU countries. We have full rights to do that.

      But, if we leave, you’ll probably be stuck with the councillors. If we put up barriers to immigration from the EU, then it’s reasonable to assume that they would put up similar barriers to us moving there.

      By the by, I have a pal who has worked in France for many years and hopes to spend the rest of his days there. Because of the threat of us leaving the EU might ahave on his status and rights to access to French healthcare, etc, he’s decided to apply for French citizenship, to hold alongside his British nationality.

      Two thing, you see.

      • Halifaix says:

        If you have the skills (or wealth) you will still have freedom to move country. I know several families who have upsticked and moved to Australia and New Zealand (despite them being outside the EU.

        There is no way Spain would want to get rid of British retires from Spain, as they bring in a lot of much needed income

        • John Hartley says:

          I think you’ll be wrong about British retirees living in Spain. Many have moved there when it was cheap to do so because they did not have large incomes so are not major contributors to the economy. Add to that, the fact that they are obviously older and needing to call more often on Spanish public services, for healthcare, social services, etc you have a situation where Spain is unlikely to want more of us living there, if they don’t have to. Simple economic facts of life, I’m afraid, Halifaix.

          Of course, what is likely to happen if we leave the EU, is that those elderly Brits will be wanting to come back and live in the UK, adding to the demands on stretched geriatric services. It is already an issue for the retired ex-pat community in Spain – easy for you to check the facts, Halifaix, and confirm for yourself that this is accurate.

          • Halifaix says:

            The ex pat community in Spain will often come back to the UK for major medical care.

            Regarding the comment that they went when Spain was cheap – have you been to Spain recently, I have and it is very cheap compared to the UK.

            Spain will not deport the ex pats, as I stated their UK pensions are very useful to an economy where over 25% of the youth in unemployed.

  14. Mr S Powell says:

    the council should stick to local affairs – which is what theyb were elected for. As far as the EU goes – I want to be able to make our own decisions instead of a lot of overpaid politicians in Brussels – the sooner we get our independence back the better.

  15. John says:

    I just wish to say that i am just am more than a little bit disappointed by the way such an important decision is being handled by our Government, and by every other commentator and party too. No surprise from the newspapers, cherry-picking their sensationalism as always. BBC News is just as bad, picking out mostly the more sensational, newsworthy as they think, bits. None of this stuff helps me, or most of us, to decide IOR, does it.

  16. Rick says:

    At the last referendum (in which I voted) we were asked if we wanted to be part of a European Economic Community – not a European Union. We were certainly conned, as Robert Cohen stated in his response.

    I also totally agree with Harry Bull who stated ‘he would prefer if this forum was used merely for local matters and leave the general population to make its own mind up on national matters without any urging from our local councillours’.

    I find it rather condescending that ‘politicians’ think we are not intelligent enough to make up our own minds on this matter. I know which way I am voting and always have known. I don’t need to be swayed by the IN’s or OUT’s.

    It is easier to hold to account ones own government rather than another 27 dodgy governments hell bent on a European Federal State with little or no chance of holding them all to account!

  17. John Hartley says:

    Hey Halifaix

    There’s only you talking about deportation. No-one would seriously expect Spain to deport existing residents. Similarly, I presume Brexiters not suggesting the UK deport existing residents.

    But, in the event of the UK leaving the EU, it is entirely reasonable to assume that EU countries would limit immigration from here to there – in the same way as the Brexiters intend that we limit immigration from there to here. As for the contribution to the Spainsih economy, you really are trying to have this both ways and it simply doesnt wash. Immigrants either make a positive contribution to the economies of Spain and the UK or they do not. You’re just cherry picking your arguments without any logic being applied. Such, unfortunately, is the whole nature of the Leave campaign – folk will see through it.

    • Halifaix says:

      I am not cherry picking –

      Eastern Europeans have caused a mass influx of economic immigrants arriving here, why because our minimum wage and welfare benefits are something they couldn’t even dream of in there country.( Some of the newer EU members have no welfare provision)

      This is not the same when going from the UK to Spain, they are not moving there for economic benefits, they’re doing it because of better weather/lifestyle. So when moving the Spain they are taking their pensions with them – something a Romanian arriving here couldn’t do

      • Peter Franklin says:

        Exactly, and besides claiming child benefit in this country because its higher here than in their own country (even though those children still live in their homeland) they also ship a lot of there earning out of the country as well. Meaning it doesn`t get recycled where we need it, here.

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