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Tories flirting with EU exit, Lib Dems fighting to keep Britain IN

May 7, 2014 10:09 AM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

IN or OUT?

The Liberal Democrats are the only party prepared to make the case for Britain remaining in the EU.

While the Liberal Democrats are fighting to protect millions of British jobs linked to trade with the EU, the Tories are openly flirting with exit, a move which would put these jobs at risk.

When it comes to the debate about whether Britain should be IN or OUT of Europe, it is clear what British businesses want and that is to remain in the EU. But unlike these major players, there are a number of Tories who want to risk millions of jobs and billions of pounds worth of investment by indulging in a Europesceptic fantasy. Here's what some of those senior Tories who want Britain OUT have to say:


Boris Johnson, Mayor of London

"We should be prepared to pull out. That goes without saying."

"I don't think we would lose millions of jobs. I think the economic benefits and disbenefits are now much more balanced."

Syed Kamall MEP, Leader of Tory MEPs

"I would probably vote to leave."

Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

"If the British people decide the decision is they want to leave the European Union, then that isn't something that I'd be afraid of, I'd embrace the opportunities that would create."


Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Education

Gove was quoted by friends saying very explicitly that if there was a referendum now he would vote to leave the EU. When asked by Andrew Marr if this was still the case, he openly answered: "Yes".

He also said: "Life outside would be perfectly tolerable, we could contemplate it, there would be certain advantages."

Philip Hammond MP, Secretary of State for Defence

"If the choice is between a European Union written exactly as it is today and not being a part of that then I have to say that I'm on the side of the argument that Michael Gove has put forward."

Owen Paterson MP, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

"We want to get our country back which means making our laws in our own Parliament."

Adam Afriyie MP

"Like Michael Gove, if we had the referendum today, like Michael Gove, I'd vote to come out."

Douglas Carswell MP

"We need to leave the European Union. We need some wise men with the clarity of thought to recognise this, and prepare a way out."

David Davis MPKey_davis.jpg

"We have to start by recognising that leaving is a real possibility, and make our partners recognise that. This starts with realising exit from Europe is not something to be afraid of. It could be a huge opportunity, and is less risky than scaremongers would have you believe.

"They say that, outside the EU, Britain would be isolated, European allies would refuse to trade with us, and it would be a one-way street to declining employment, waning influence and decreasing prosperity. They say it

would endanger our security. Nonsense.

"A new relationship with Europe could trigger a bright new future for the UK."

Bernard Jenkin MP

"He is right that the UK's prosperity and security depend so much on what happens in the rest of the world, but wrong to suggest that the UK must stay in the EU. Unless there is a fundamental change in our relationship with the EU, the UK will simply have to leave the EU, so British business is free to compete."

Liam Fox MP

"If the choice for me was between going in the current direction - which, let's face it, is towards ever-closer and ultimately a greater and greater loss of British sovereignty, then personal preference would be to leave. I don't want to have ever-closer union, I don't want to be European first and British second."

Grant Shapps MP, Conservative Party Chairman

"If we can't get any powers back at all then we'll be in a different position."


Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

"We shouldn't stay at any price."

Jacob Rees-Mogg MP

"The EU makes too many decisions, passes too many laws and controls too much of our lives.

"I am optimistic because the Conservative party is offering a referendum which will allow us to exit."

Lord Lawson

"I'll be voting to quit the EU."