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Does your MP want to Remain in or Leave the EU

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The BBC have a useful web-site where you can find out whether your MP backs the Leave or Remain campaign supports your view.

Does my MP back the Leave or Remain campaign?

The official position of the Conservative party, and Government, is to remain in the EU. Individual Conservative MPs, however, can support either view and are free to campaign either to Remain, or to Leave, the EU. The Conservative MPs appear to be almost even split between Leave and Remain.

For Labour, the party line is to Remain in the EU. Almost all of the Labour MPs seem to be following this instruction from their leadership.

Both the Scottish Nationalist Party and Liberal Democrat party have indicated they want to Remain in the EU – all their MPs are following this instruction.

The Democratic Unionist party DUP have indicated that they will campaign to Leave and all their MPs follow this approach.

Of the other political parties represented in Parliament, only UKIP (1 MP) have indicated they wish to leave the EU.

The breakdown of the political affiliations represented in Parliament are as follows:

Conservative 330
Labour 229
Scottish National Party 54
Democratic Unionist Party 8
Liberal Democrat 8
Independent 4
Sinn Fein 4
Plaid Cymru 3
Social Democratic & Labour Party 3
Ulster Unionist Party 2
Green Party 1
UK Independence Party 1

Overall, the vast majority of MPs have indicated they want to Remain in the EU which may, or may not, be representative of the electorate as a whole.

update: 8 July 2016

Michael Fabricant is the MP for Lichfield. In a recent article for the Lichfield Mercury he mentioned:

… As for reflecting the views of my constituents, an MP is a representative not a delegate.

I am elected to use my own judgement on behalf of constituents and not to receive instructions from them.

MPs have to be independent. But in the event, I did in fact reflect the view of Lichfield with 59 per cent of the local electorate sharing my opinion that we should leave.

Full story at
http://www.lichfieldmercury.co.uk/8203-the-country-has-spoken-and-we-must-move-on-says-lichfield-mp-michael-fabricant/story-29451592-detail/story.html

Viewpoints

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There are a number of different organisations presenting their opinion as to the benefits, or otherwise, of remaining as members of the EU.

The UK Government is recommending that the UK should remain in the EU. Info available at

https://www.eureferendum.gov.uk

The Electoral Commission has designated Vote Leave Ltd as the lead campaigner for the Leave EU campaign and The In Campaign Ltd as the lead campaigner for the Remain campaign.

http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/find-information-by-subject/elections-and-referendums/upcoming-elections-and-referendums/eu-referendum/designation-of-lead-campaigners-for-the-eu-referendum

This allows each of these 2 campaign groups a spending limit of £7 million, 1 free distribution of information to voters, referendum campaign broadcasts and a grant of up to to £600,000.

The In Campaign Ltd company is also known as Britain Stronger in Europe and can be found at

http://www.strongerin.co.uk

Vote Leave can be found at

http://www.voteleavetakecontrol.org

There are a number of other organisations campaigning either to Remain In or to Leave the EU

UK Government

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The Conservative Government believes that it is in the best interests of the UK to remain in the EU and have produced a leaflet that outlines their position. This will be delivered to all households in the UK starting with England from 11 to 13 April and in Scotland Wales and Northern Ireland commencing the 9th May.

EUToryViewpoint

Please bear in mind that the document has been produced by the Cabinet office

https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/cabinet-office

and the official Government line is to remain in the EU. Thus the information is presented to represent that opinion.

You can view a copy of the leaflet on-line or download your own copy from the government web-site at

https://www.eureferendum.gov.uk/why-the-government-believes-we-should-remain/eu-referendum-leaflet/

Information used during the creation of this leaflet is provided at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/why-the-government-believes-that-voting-to-remain-in-the-european-union-is-the-best-decision-for-the-uk/why-the-government-believes-that-voting-to-remain-in-the-european-union-is-the-best-decision-for-the-uk

Based on figures supplied by the government, it has cost £9.3 million pounds to produce, distribute and publicise the leaflet which works out at approximately 34p per household (based on 27.4 million households). The cost can be further broken down as follows:

  • Production costs – £458,500
  • Print and delivery – £5,947,436
  • Digital promotion and website – £2,894,064

How much does membership of the EU cost the UK

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Being a member of the EU costs the UK money, by way of a membership fee, but (arguably) also creates jobs, trade and investment.

According to a UK Parliament research briefing entitled

EU referendum: UK proposals, legal impact of an exit and alternatives to membership,

published on February 12 2016 and held in the House of Commons library

There is no definitive study of the economic impact of the UK’s EU membership or the costs and benefits of withdrawal. Many of the costs and benefits are subjective or intangible and a host of assumptions must be made to reach an estimate.

While the actual economic costs and benefits may be difficult to calculate at least we know what we actually pay for membership, or do we ?

For example, read the explanation found at

The UK’s EU membership fee

which attempts to make some sense from the different sources such as the Treasury, ONS and Europes own data from the European Commission (http://ec.europa.eu/budget/figures/2007-2013/index_en.cfm).

The BBC website also has a breakdown of the UK’s net contribution in 2015
http://www.bbc.co.uk/guides/zgjwtyc#zct3wxs

Overall, through these source and others, there appears to be a consensus that the UK’s contribution in 2015, can be broken down as follows:

Amount that we should pay into the EU: £18bn

less the UK rebate 1 : £5bn

less EU payments to the UK: £4.5bn

leaving a net contribution of £8.5bn

Assuming these numbers are accurate lets look at them further

£8.5bn is actually £8,500,000,000

which works out at over 23 million pounds a day

or almost 1 million pounds an hour

(It is also worth mentioning, as a comparison, that total Public Spending in the UK in 2015 totalled around £748 billion so that payments to the EU represent approximately 1% of this figure

http://www.ukpublicspending.co.uk/spending_chart_2005_2019UKb_F0t).


Update 14/04/2016

In a recently published research briefing

http://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/SN06455

there are details of the UK’s contributions to the EU budget from 2009 to 20015

UKContributions

A copy of the document can be obtained from

http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/SN06455/SN06455.pdf


Update 30/11/2016

still a thorny issue …

Let’s look at figures provided by the EU themselves in the European Commission financial report for 2015

EU Contributions from the UK

and the full article at

https://politick.co.uk/how-much-does-the-uk-owe-the-eu/

so was the Leave Battlebus actually near the mark ?

Notes:

  1. The rebate was negotiated by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1984 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UK_rebate
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