Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Newspaper column 29 June 2016 - Brexit fallout

There is no doubt that the result of the EU Referendum last Thursday was a surprise to many people. But the fact is it was a legitimate democratic decision made by the British people. The country voted to leave the EU by a majority of over 1.2million votes and every region of the country with the exception of only London, Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to leave.

Whilst I am pleased with the outcome, I do understand the strong feelings those who wanted the UK to remain in the EU feel. We need to accept this decision and now work together for our future outside the EU. Calls for a 2nd referendum are, in my view, undemocratic and unworkable.
I have been contacted by many people asking about the affect this decision will have on our country and on us as individuals. Let’s be clear this result is neither the end of the world nor is it the answer to all our problems. But what it does do is give us as a nation the opportunity to once again run our own affairs. We can now recover control of things such as VAT, our borders, our fishing waters and the regulations on our farmers.  

The fact is virtually nothing has changed since last Wednesday. We have not yet left the EU and there will be a lengthy process of negotiation before we leave that is likely to take at least two years. I would urge that we do not jump to conclusions about what life outside the EU will like – especially negative ones. Let us wait and see what the negotiations will bring and precisely what future trade deals and agreements will be made before passing judgement.

One of the greatest dangers we face is that we talk down our country’s prospects. There is a very real danger that we create a self-fulfilling prophesy by saying all will be doom and gloom. I believe in our nation’s ability to stand up for ourselves. We are a great country with a strong economy and a significant player on the world stage. There is no reason we cannot be successful and prosper outside the EU. We should be proud and confident of our country’s future. 

I was very pleased that a majority of voters in Cornwall voted to leave the EU. By a margin of 12%, significantly bigger than the national average, Cornwall demonstrated its desire for change. Legitimate questions have been asked about the impact of this on Cornwall and especially with regards to EU funding for our economy. Once again it is far too soon to answer those questions. But I can assure everyone that, along with my fellow Cornish MPs, I will be working tirelessly to ensure Cornwall continues to get the investment and support we need and deserve.

There will undoubtedly be some bumps in the road ahead. The Conservative Party needs to elect a new leader and Prime Minister as well make decisions about when to begin the process of leaving the EU. But I want to assure everyone that through all this I will continue to work for the people of this constituency and represent you in Parliament. My team and I are here to serve you and are available to help in any way we can. You can contact me my email or phone 01726 829379.