Two days left to Independence Day!
Telegraph poll gives Remain a lead
Photo from the Indy – believe it or not
The Telegraph has a poll showing the Remain camp ahead 53% to 46%. The paper relates this directly to the Jo Cox tragedy. But the polls have been volatile, and a highly emotional news story might well cease to influence voting intentions as the public comes to realise that the actions of one evil and deranged individual should not be the basis for a great constitutional decision.
Sir Lynton Crosby https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lynton_Crosby, the leading political strategist, says the referendum “will go down to the wire”. Tory MP Dominic Raab says Thursday should be a vote of confidence in Britain, a chance to take back democratic control. Lord Glasman, a Labour peer, says Brexit would be a chance for Labour to lead “a renewal of democracy”.
In yesterday’s Telegraph Boris makes a passionate appeal to voters to take the last chance in a generation to take control and reclaim democracy, while Andrea Leadsom says “Throw off the shackles and we will thrive”.
The Times gets all schizophrenic
Having declared for Remain, it’s interesting that today’s Times offers us Melanie Phillips: “We’re choosing between freedom and serfdom”, and Matt Ridley “An exciting world is waiting outside the EU”. Great columnists, great articles, great ideas.
EU threat to pensions
The Mail headlines “EU threat to pensions”. Professor David Blake, who recently wrote the Cass Business School report rubbishing the Treasury’s Brexit forecasts, outlines a series of EU financial services measures which will add billions to the cost of state and private pensions.
Cameron knew his immigration target was impossible, but kept repeating it
The Mail quotes Steve Hilton, at one time Cameron’s closest aide, who has said that Prime Minister David Cameron was told directly and explicitly four years ago that his promise to reduce immigration to tens of thousands was impossible while Britain remain in the EU – but continued to repeat the pledge. And another thing: even if he hadn’t been told, he should have known. Which bit of “free movement” does he have difficulty understanding?
The Guardian backs Remain – Telegraph backs Leave
Now there’s a surprise. The Guardian backs Remain. And it runs a piece by George Soros saying that Brexit could reprise Black Wednesday. You will recall, of course, that “Black Wednesday” became “Golden Wednesday”, and led to a large and sustained recovery in the British economy. Maybe not such a bad outcome, George?
Meantime the Telegraph backs leave: “Vote Leave to benefit from a world of opportunity”.
Corbyn: “We should stay in the EU and improve it”
Obviously Jeremy hasn’t noticed that British politicians have been saying that for four decades, and it just keeps getting worse. All together now: “Jeremy, the EU doesn’t do reform”. And it will take absolutely no notice at all of the UK if we surrender, and run up the white flag, and vote to remain. But at least Corbyn has had the honesty (or carelessness?) to admit that there’ll be no controlling EU immigration if we Remain.
Juncker fails to endorse Cameron’s “Project Fear”
Perhaps surprisingly, Commission President Jean Claude Juncker has failed to back up Cameron’s claims for Project Fear. He appears to accept that Brexit could increase wages, and he doubts that Cameron’s “renegotiation” will curb immigration. Funny that. I doubt it too. And so do the British people.
Riots in Calais
The Express reports that migrants in Calais have been rioting, shouting “F**k the UK”, and throwing bricks at British cars. French police reportedly battled several hundred migrants desperate to get into the UK ahead ofThursday’s referendum – though few would expect an instant clamp-down immediately following the vote.
Fury in Gibraltar over Spanish flag
A large Spanish flag was erected briefly on the Rock of Gibraltar, apparently as a publicity stunt by Spanish interests. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy meantime expressed his displeasure with David Cameron’s visit to Gibraltar. Since the Gibraltarians are expected to vote Remain, Leave campaigners in Britain may not be too happy about the visit either.
“They’ve stopped laughing now”
Senior Brussels apparatchiks used to laugh at the prospect of Brexit. Finally they’re taking it seriously. There is talk of other nations – Sweden and Denmark have been mentioned – also wanting to leave. And the idea of a “Nordic trading bloc” has been mooted. On Thursday we make a great decision for Britain, which could also usher in a new, dynamic and democratic future for the Brussels’ other vassal-states.
Farage accuses Cameron of exploiting the Jo Cox tragedy
Initially there was a degree of respect shown following the appalling death of Jo Cox a few days ago. But increasingly politicians and commentators have hinted at a link between the outrage and the Brexit campaign, suggesting that aggressive campaigning on the immigration issue could have contributed to a climate of anger and hate. Few direct claims have been made (though the Daily Star explicitly made the link), but nudges and winks and subliminal messages. Nigel Farage rightly takes the Prime Minister to task over the issue.