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Category Archives: The EU

May’s foreign policy gambit

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Another day, another upheaval in British politics. In the 21 days since the EU referendum, we’ve had more changes of more consequence than in any time since the second world war. All very grand to say that, but where are we going with all this? Until yesterday, it was very hard to say, precisely because […]

What’s the EU going to do?

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It’s telling that almost all the British public debate since Friday’s announcement of the result of the EU referendum has been about British politics: who’s succeeding David Cameron? What’s happening to Jeremy Corbyn? Or Scotland? Almost nothing has been discussed about how this decision will play out with the rest of the European Union. At […]

Is the UK leaving the EU?

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Thursday’s historic vote was specifically about British membership of the European Union, but subsequent events appear to have raised the question of whether the decision to leave will actually result in it happening. Here we consider some aspects of this. Why it will happen Constitutionally, any referendum in the UK is advisory, since Parliament is […]

What the EU referendum campaigns say on social media

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With last than a week to go until the EU referendum, the campaigns on both sides are now in overdrive. Since late January, we have been following the social media campaigns, particularly on Twitter, to understand better the messages that different groups are making, the way in which they frame and the extent to which […]

Complacency is a killer

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One of the most interesting aspects of the EU referendum campaign so far has been the extent to which things haven’t changed. Six weeks into the official period, we still have polling that gives no clear advantage to either side, nor even an indication that attitudes have changed at all: the don’t knows still make […]

The curious case of Grassroots Out atomising campaign

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Earlier this week, I was quoted in a Daily Telegraph piece about Grassroots Out (GO). The article had noted that ten seeming-offshoots of the group had been registered with the Electoral Commission as participants in the referendum campaign. If the Commission were to consider them as separate, then taken together they would be free to spend as […]

Leave’s painful choices

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The opening of the official campaign on the EU referendum hasn’t been all fireworks; instead, it’s been mostly more of the same. Each side trading consequences and perils, questioning the other side’s competence or intent. In particular, we’ve been lacking vision. The vision thing is an easy one of trash: too many overtones of Tony […]

The EU referendum: Second-order or just second rate?

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The return from whatever Easter break there might have been marks the opening of the last long phase of the EU referendum: There’s a clear stretch now through to late June, which will split into two parts. The first will be until early May and the local elections, the second through to the vote itself, […]

Achieving lift-off in the referendum

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  There’s not much that’s clear so far in the referendum, but one thing that looks pretty certain is that the campaign has yet to catch the public’s interest fully. Indeed, it might not be pushing things too far to say that most people don’t really care. The reasons for this are many and various. […]

What’s the state of the EU referendum campaign?

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The other night I was very happy to talk as part of UCL’s European Institute event on ‘Brexit Divisions‘. Of course, I might have been even happier if the two individuals from the main campaign groups in the referendum hadn’t decided at all-too-literally the last minute to duck out, but actually I doubt it, since […]

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