Cameron’s Euro vote victory is far from certain

David Cameron has outlined his plans for the renegotiation of Britain’s membership of the European Union and the concessions he intends to win in the hope that this will convince British voters to remain in the club when they cast their ballots in the forthcoming referendum.

The World Today Updated 11 December 2020 Published 11 December 2015 2 minute READ

Professor Matthew Goodwin

Former Visiting Senior Fellow, Europe Programme

His core demands would not have surprised those watching the debate. He spoke of the need to boost competitiveness in the single market, of exempting Britain from ever-closer union, strengthening the role of national parliaments in EU law-making, and, crucially, curbing access to in-work benefits for EU migrants.

It was a speech, however, that largely failed to silence his critics. That ardent Eurosceptic Tory backbenchers dismissed it as ‘pretty thin gruel’ comes as no surprise; they have been agitating for Brexit since the 1990s and were never likely to be won over.

More worrying for the pro-EU camp should be the response among voters. Since Cameron has assumed a more prominent role in the debate there has been no bounce in support for Remain. On the contrary, the race has tightened as the Leave side has gained ground.

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