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Manifestos: Nationality and Europe

Manifestos: Nationality and Europe Baloncici
Where do the parties stand on Europe and nationality?

CONSERVATIVE

• Hold an ‘in-out’ referendum on membership of the EU before the end of 2017.

• No to ‘ever closer union’. No to unnecessary interference. And no to the Euro, to participation in Eurozone bail-outs or notions like a European Army.

• See powers devolving from Brussels.

• Continue to ensure that defence policy remains under British national control, maintaining NATO and the transatlantic relationship as the ‘cornerstones’ of UK defence and security policy.

• Expand the Single Market, breaking down the remaining barriers to trade and ensuring that new sectors are opened up to British firms.

LABOUR

• Return Britain to a leadership role in Europe. Reform the EU so that it works for Britain.

• Secure reforms to EU immigration and social security rules and will push for stronger transitional controls, which ‘will enable member states to manage the flow of workers for longer when new countries join’.

• Open up EU decision-making, and implement institutional reforms.

• Work to strengthen the influence of national parliaments over European legislation and will argue for a ‘red-card mechanism’ for member states, ‘providing greater parliamentary scrutiny’.

euCountries of the EU (Image: DW)

LIBERAL DEMOCRATS

• Hold an ‘in/out’ referendum when there is next any Treaty change involving a material transfer of sovereignty from the UK to the EU. Campaign for the UK to remain in the European Union when that referendum comes.

• Remain a committed member of the EU to complete the Single Market in areas including online industries, the energy market and services, and negotiate EU international trade agreements for British business opportunities.

• Continue to work with other EU governments on foreign policy issues towards Russia, Ukraine, the Middle East and North Africa. Will build on defence cooperation with France, the Netherlands, the Nordic states and other European countries, as ‘the most reliable basis for British security’.

• Scrap national barriers to British firms trading online and by concluding ambitious EU trade agreements with key markets like Japan and India.

• Support negotiations at the World Trade Organization as well as an ambitious Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the EU and the USA.

• Only support an agreement that upholds EU standards of consumer, employee and environmental protection, and allows us to determine how NHS services are provided.

• Reform the EU to make it more efficient, ‘reducing the proportion of the EU budget spent on the Common Agricultural Policy, abolishing ‘unnecessary’ EU institutions like the European Economic and Social Committee and will scrap the second seat of the European Parliament in Strasbourg.

• Enhance the role of national Parliaments in scrutinising EU decision-making and by giving a combined majority of national Parliaments the automatic ability to block unwanted legislation.

GREEN PARTY

• Support the proposal to have an ‘in/out’ referendum on the EU. ‘Endless debate on membership is a diversion from more important matters, such as ending inequality and adapting our economy to One-Planet Living.’

• Yes to Europe, yes to reform of the EU, but also yes to a referendum.

UKIP

• Want an ‘in/out’ referendum on the EU as soon as possible.

• Only British citizens will be allowed to vote and there will be ‘strict spending limits for both ‘yes’ and ‘no’ camps, together with fair, balanced and equal media coverage of both arguments.

• Question of choice will be: DO YOU WISH BRITAIN TO BE A FREE, INDEPENDENT, SOVEREIGN DEMOCRACY?

• Following a vote to leave, two legal options: 1) Repeal the European Communities Act 1972 and leave immediately. 2) Activate Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and notify the European Council that the UK has decided to leave the EU in two years’ time.

identityEthnicity and National Identity in England and Wales, 2011 (Image: ONS)

PLAID CYMRU

• Wales to be an independent country, a member of the EU with a seat in the UN.

• An independent Wales to have a seat at the EU council, an EU commissioner and an increased number of members of the European parliament representing Wales.

• Push for EU presidency to work in the ‘best interests of Wales, including hosting a major international summit in Wales and shared discussions over priorities between the UK and the devolved governments so that the presidency period is in the Welsh national interest’.

• Push for the closure of the second European parliament in Strasburg.

• Oppose the EU–US free trade agreement, the TTIP, on the grounds that it puts ‘power into the hands of international corporations, threatens to weaken our democratic institutions and undermine hard-earned improvements in public services, intellectual property, food safety, health and environmental standards’.

SCOTTISH NATIONAL PARTY

• Oppose a referendum on membership of the EU.

• If an ‘in/out’ EU referendum does go ahead, will seek to amend the legislation to ensure that no constituent part of the UK can be taken out of the EU against its will. 

• Propose a ‘double majority’ rule – meaning that unless England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland each vote to leave the EU, the UK would remain a member state.

• Support free movement within the EU.

• Supports Scottish participation in the European Arrest warrant.

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