Thursday, February 04, 2016

Double Standards?

1)  Brexit supporters and the Eurosceptic press: (loudly, for months)

"It's wrong for ministers to be forced to support "Remain" or face damage to their careers: everyone should be free to vote on the merits of the issue and what they think is best for Britain!"

2) Michael Fabricant (Lichfield) (Con): (In the House of Commons yesterday)

"Given the difficulty of getting any change to our EU membership approved by the other 27 countries, what we have got is as good as anyone, I think, might have expected and more. I congratulate the Prime Minister on his achievement. Will my right hon. Friend confirm that once the European Council have made its decision, he will respect the views of those Ministers who might publicly express the opinion that the United Kingdom should now leave the EU, and that the careers of those Ministers in this Government will not be jeopardised or threatened as a consequence?

3) The Prime Minister: "I can certainly give my hon. Friend that assurance. We are still in the process of negotiation. The manifesto we all stood on said that we wanted to get the best possible deal for Britain and that we would all work on that together. That is exactly what we are doing. If the deal is agreed—whether in February or perhaps later, if it takes more time—there will then be a meeting of the Cabinet to decide whether we can take a recommended position to the British people. If that position is to recommend we stay in a reformed European Union then, yes, at that point Ministers, who, as I have said, have long-standing views and want to campaign in another direction, will be able to do that. The Government will still have a position. This is not a free-for-all. It will be a clear Government position from which Ministers can depart. Yes, as I have said, they should not suffer disadvantage because they want to take that view."


"This is a very important issue for our country, but in the end it will not be decided in this Chamber. We will all have to reach our own conclusions, and if hon. Members passionately believe in their hearts that Britain is better off outside the EU, they should vote that way. If they think, even on balance, that Britain is better off in the EU, they should go with what they think. Members should not take a view because of what their constituency association might say or because they are worried about a boundary review, or because they think it might be advantageous this way or that way. People should do what is in their heart—if you think it is right for Britain, then do that."

4) Brexit supporters and the Eurosceptic press: (apparent thought process)

What? - Is Cameron suggesting that the right to make up your own mind without risk to your career and argue for what you think is best for Britain should actually apply to people who want to vote "Remain" as well as people who want to vote "Leave"? OUTRAGEOUS!

5) Headlines this morning in Eurosceptic newspapers and media outlets:

"Fury of the Tory Grassroots"

"Fury as Cameron tells MPs to ignore the views of voters"

"Ignore your constituents, Cameron tells MPs"

"Tory uproar as Cameron tells MPs to ignore grassroots

In my humble opinion the EU referendum is far too serious and important an issue for either side to bludgeon people into campaigning in a direction they don't believe in.

It was right for the "Leave" side to ask David Cameron to let ministers who wish to support "Leave" have the ability to do that without resigning or damaging their careers.

It is preposterous double standards for them to attack him when he agrees to that demand and says that people on both sides should have the freedom to campaign for what they believe in their hearts to be in Britain's interests.

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