The UK’s EU referendum in 2016
On 23 June 2016, British, Irish and Commonwealth citizens will vote in referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU. The question, as stated in European Union Referendum Act 2015 is following:
“Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?”
With two positions “Remain a member of the European Union” and “Leave the European Union”.
British Cabinet ministers are having personal freedom to campaign for or against Brexit. David Cameron in his speech announcing the referendum date recommended the British to vote for staying in the EU. He stated there is a need to reform Europe. Nevertheless, withdrawal would be a threat for UK’s economic and national security.
According to British PM, Brexit supporters are offering a risk at a time of uncertainty. For instance, in case of accessing EU Single Market by British businesses or combating cross-border crime and terrorism.
The Electoral Commission has a responsibility to register organisations or individuals who want to campaign in the referendum. Lead campaign group will be designated, for both, “Remain” and “Leave”, sides. Two official lead campaigns will be then allowed to spend a grant of £7m and get access to media broadcasts and free mailing.
EEC Membership Referendum in 1975
From a historical perspective it will be the second referendum concerning Britain membership in Intergovernmental Organisation. In 1975 the voters were asked whether the UK should remain in the European Economic Community (EEC) also known as Common Market.
Cabinet members were also publicly campaigning. Seven of the twenty-three ministers were against UK’s EEC membership. On 5 June 1975, the majority of British voters (67%) decided UK to stay in EEC.
“Leave” lobby. Pro-Brexit campaigns in 2016
Leave.EU – Cross-party campaign, co-founded by Arron Banks in July 2015. Britain’s fastest growing grassroots movement to leave the EU. Rival campaign of Vote Leave. Candidate for an official Leave campaign in the referendum.
— LEAVE.EU (@LeaveEUOfficial) February 14, 2016
Vote Leave – Vote Leave, take control. Rival campaign of Leave.EU, created in October 2015, backed up by six Cabinet Ministers from Conservative party including Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Justice and Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. Vote Leave postulates to become an official Brexit campaign in the referendum.
— Vote Leave (@vote_leave) March 1, 2016
Grassroots Out – Grassroots Out is a cross party campaign launched in January 2016, designed to bring together ordinary voters who want to back ‘Brexit’. It is supported by UKIP leader and MEP, Nigel Farage. Grassroots Out claims to become a lead Leave campaign.
— Grassroots Out (@Grassroots_Out) March 2, 2016
Business for Britain – business community exit campaign, coalition of 500 entrepreneurs, an alternative for pro-EU business pressure group – Business for New Europe.
— Business for Britain (@forbritain) February 26, 2016
Better Off Out –cross-party campaign formed by Freedom Association in 2006.
Cameron says our security is at risk if we leave the EU. Frank Gardner disagrees. Pls RT if you agree with Frank. pic.twitter.com/36ptPYFKtR
— Better Off Out (@BetterOffOut) February 29, 2016
“Remain” lobby. Anti-Brexit campaigns in 2016
Britain Stronger in Europe (The In Campaign Ltd) is a most popular pro-EU campaign launched in October 2015. Campaign leader is Stuart Rose, former chairman of Marks and Spencer. Main actions consist of leaflet distribution and video campaigns with politicians, entrepreneurs and celebrities.
The EU referendum will be on 23 June: the only choice for a stronger and safer Britain is to vote ‘Remain’. pic.twitter.com/UgIV3RtKsH
— Stronger In (@StrongerIn) February 20, 2016
British Influence – cross-party pro-EU think tank, founded in 2012 by Peter Wilding. Organisation is publishing policy reports on Britain’s role in global affairs, British Influence Scorecard and briefing papers.
Share → EU migrants, rather than coming to the UK to live on benefits, make a net contribution to our society pic.twitter.com/EVQ8ESncHC
— British Influence (@britinfluence) February 18, 2016
Business for New Europe – pro-European coalition of entrepreneurs. Founded by Finsbury’s chairman Roland Rudd in 2006. Campaign is an opposite and direct adversary of eurosceptic “Business for Britain” group.
— BusinessForNewEurope (@BNE_Group) February 23, 2015
European Movement UK – Britain’s longest standing pro-European cross-party organisation. It’s chaired by Laura Sandys, British Conservative Party politician. European Movement launched in-campaign addressed to British students – Students for Europe
— European Movement UK (@euromove) October 18, 2015
Scientists for EU – grassroots social media campaign run by British researchers to keep British membership in the EU.
Please share this Scientists for EU letter in The Times 22/5/2015 pic.twitter.com/uQA31xviso
— Scientists for EU (@Scientists4EU) May 22, 2015