Must admit I was never that keen on an EU In-Out Referendum. I thought it too complex a decision for a winner-takes-all question. But once David Cameron announced it, I went along with it. Saw no real choice. And though I thought a vote to Leave was unlikely and would create great uncertainty, I always knew I personally would vote Leave. And I did, on June 23rd 2016, with far less certainty than I would were there to be another referendum in the near future. I am much more certain Leave was the right decision today.
I simply cannot contemplate the damage it would do to UK society, national unity and morale, and the international reputation of the UK if in some way we did not Leave. Which is why I am so certain we will leave. And I also feel sure that the appallingly biased presentation of debate by some of the media, intended to undermine the UK in negotiations to the extent that we might reject the final negotiated deal is making the British people more in favour of leaving. The massive publicity given to Lord Heseltine, who was fired from his Government role months ago, and Lord Adonis, who jumped a few days ago before he was pushed. Anyone would think they were key players. They are not. They are given a supposed level of importance to give credence to a Preferred Option. Most people have never heard of Lord Adonis. Actually, they still haven’t.
I have no problem with them holding the opinion they do. Just as I continue to admire Ken Clarke and Anna Soubry. They are perfectly entitled to follow their beliefs, and vote accordingly. Those I find far less worthy of admiration are those who announce they “respect” the vote cast by over 17 million people in the referendum, and then do all they can to undermine it. Labour MP, Kate Hoey has written a great article in today’s Telegraph making that very point - about the Labour Party. She really is a genuine star. It really is depressing that a political party, which aspires to Government, treats the most important issue of our time as a matter of political opportunism rather than a matter of great principle. They will pay a price for this later on.
In my New Years message to constituents, I said I was feeling first shoots of optimism for a good while. Almost none of the threats that were supposed to land upon us the day after we voted to Leave have not come to pass. And I really don’t think they are going to. Quite a bit of commentary is about opportunity that Brexit presents. The reality is that the UK is leaving the EU. And it really would be best for our nation if we all focussed our efforts on securing the best possible arrangement for the UK and for the EU.