Brexit: There's 'no case' for returning to the EU says Starmer
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Brian Cox said Brexit “has failed” while Guy Verhofstadt gloated about Britain’s GDP after the “con”. The University of Manchester’s professor of particle physics issued the call after a poll showed only a third of people who backed Brexit think it was a success two years on.
Speaking on Twitter, Prof. Cox noted leaving the EU had merits, but has been upended by the global economy and events.
“In 2016 one could have made a plausible case for Brexit based on deregulation, low taxes, smaller more nimble state”, he said.
“But as a real world policy, particularly given the geopolitical, economic and trading realities of 2022, it has failed.
“Political challenge is now how to unwind it. By political challenge, I mean that each small step will have to command a healthy majority (not just 52 – 48!) and this will require strong leadership.”
Meanwhile, Mr Verhofstadt has mocked leaving the EU as a “con” after a report said the UK’s GDP shrank by 5.5 percent in the second quarter of this year.
The Belgian MEP said: “Taxes up. Pay down. An economy 5.5% smaller..all thanks to #Brexit.
“Is this the future British people voted for? or was Brexit a con?”
Prof. Cox and Mr Verhofstadt’s comments came after a survey by YouGov for the Times found 41 percent of Leave voters think Brexit had been worse than they thought during the 2016 referendum.
Just under a quarter said Brexit had damaged Britain’s place in the world, 34 percent said it had had a negative effect on the economy and 41 under said it had been bad for immigration.
However less than half of all voters – 47 percent – would reverse the Brexit referendum vote, even though only 20 percent think it was a good idea.
Following the survey, pollster John Curtice told The Times the number of people who voted to Leave in 2016 was falling because of old age, replaced with younger people who largely think Brexit was a bad idea.
“Unless the Tories can convince middle-aged voters that Brexit was a good idea, then it is an idea that will die on its feet as the electorate changes”, he said.
“There are very few voters under the age of 24 who think Brexit was a good idea.”
Tory MP Iain Duncan Smith, a prominent Leave advocate, said the results showed the government needed to do more to take advantage of Brexit.
He said: “I’m not surprised Leave voters are unhappy,” he said. “I’m bloody unhappy.
“Boris settled for way less than he should have done in the trade deal and then didn’t do what he should have done to reshape the economy to take advantage of having left the EU.
“We need to change the face of the economy to make the UK much more competitive, but nothing has been done.”
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