Conservative Diary

« End of term polls: Cameron and the Conservatives not damaged by Hackgate, continued grassroots support for the Coalition, and Labour's unconvincing fiscal message | Main | Call for fairer petrol prices from Robert Halfon MP zooms to near top of epetitions website »

Cameron to Better Off Outers: You had your vote on Europe 36 years ago

By Tim Montgomerie
Follow Tim on Twitter.

"I am writing on behalf of the Prime Minister to thank you for your letter of 12 July regarding our membership of the EU.

We understand the strength of feeling of some who would prefer us not to be in the EU at all and that, like you, would like an in/out referendum to take place. There are some perfectly respectable arguments in favour of holding such a referendum. But there are also many strong counter-arguments, such as the fact that we had a referendum on that issue in 1975, which produced a very clear result..."

And so begins a letter from the Prime Minister's office to Tory activist Anita Segar, setting out why she and the rest of the British people shouldn't have a referendum on EU membership. You can read the full text of the letter here.


The Sunday Express has described the letter as "extraordinary" and they quote my response to the idea that we all had our say in 1975:

"It's both ridiculous and insulting for Cameron's office to suggest that the 1975 referendum means we don't now need a vote on whether we should stay in the EU. For a start, anyone who's now aged under 53 wasn't able or eligible to vote in 1975.

Just as importantly the EU was then described as the Common Market or the European Economic Community. Since then the Common Market has moved very substantially towards a political union. Some of us would like the opportunity to go back to what our parents and grandparents voted for in 1975.

A referendum now would either take us out of the EU or force European leaders to give Britain a better deal in return for remaining members."

> You can sign The Express' e-petition for an EU referendum here.


You must be logged in using Intense Debate, Wordpress, Twitter or Facebook to comment.