Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not


by Éoin Clarke    
6:49 pm - October 3rd 2011

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The latest YouGov poll questioning voters attitudes towards the EU show that more Labour voters think the EU has been a negative thing for Britain than a positive.

In total 50% of UK voters think the EU has been a negative thing and just 28% a positive. This at the very least is justification for giving voters an in or out referendum on EU membership.

The left of the Labour in particular have become increasingly estranged with the EU as it has adversely affected British manufacturing and has been perceived to have damaged the viability of the welfare state and put pressure on home grown employment through increased immigration.

Perhaps the biggest incentive for the intellectuals in Labour to become increasingly suspicious of EU membership has been its hegemonic role it has played in facilitating the expansion of capitalism and imperialism  at the expense of the environment peace and social justice.

It should not go without saying the the EU has been great for European peace and harmony. It has also helped reduce regional inequality. The introduction of equality (particularly gender, racial and sexual) legislation and the spread of human rights has been an advantage of EU membership.

The flow of information and cultural integration has brought Europe closer together.  Some might also argue it has slowed the damage to the environment through European cooperation

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About the author
Eoin is an occasional contributor. He is a founder of the Labour-Left think-tank and writes regularly at the Green Benches blog.
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Reader comments


Breaking News.

Labour supporters can be blinkered idiots as well. Just because there’s more of them doesn’t mean they’re right.

The party split is a result of the class split; working class voters believe EU membership has been bad for Britain by 55% to 21%.

3. Leon Wolfson

@2 – Yea, it’s amazing what a barrage of press propaganda from anti-EU papers will do.

Leon @ 3:

Of course, the pro-EU people don’t exactly do their cause any favours. See Chris’ comment at # 1 for an example.

5. Rob the crip

The EU did not mess up the welfare state otherwise Germany France would be in the same mess, they are not.

It was Blair that messed it up big time and since Blair’s politics are Cameron;s are the same god help us all

Perhaps the biggest incentive for the intellectuals in Labour to become increasingly suspicious of EU membership has been its hegemonic role it has played in facilitating the expansion of capitalism and imperialism at the expense of the environment peace and social justice.

Imperialism?

7. Leon Wolfson

@6 – Wingnut translater says “has defended civil liberties the government wanted to abolish”

Also, this representative of the fact the left no longer vote for labour, so the EU’s supporters are not properly represented…

@6 – Wingnut translater says “has defended civil liberties the government wanted to abolish”

Er.. what?

9. Leon Wolfson

If you don’t want an answer, don’t ask the question.

@ 9:

I don’t think it’s that he didn’t want an answer; more that the answer you gave seem didn’t seem to have any relevance to what he said.

11. Leon Wolfson

@10 – Of course it does. The days-in-detention row, anyone? *bang*, a Labour policy shot down largely because of a fuss the EU raised. And one of many.

Imperialism!

Leon, are you saying that Éoin Clarke is a wingnut?

@10 – Of course it does. The days-in-detention row, anyone? *bang*, a Labour policy shot down largely because of a fuss the EU raised. And one of many.

Do you mean 90 days? That was shot down by Tories, LibDems and about 50 Labour MPs. IIRC very little, if anything, to do with the EU.

13. Leon Wolfson

@12 – No, the later 42-day row.

IIRC, victory against 42 days was again little if anything to do with the EU, but rather won in the Lords by the Tories, LibDems, 25 Labour and Crossbench peers. I can find no mention of the European Union or EU in that debate:

http://www.theyworkforyou.com/lords/?id=2008-10-13a.491.4

The results of the division, for reference:
http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/division.php?date=2008-10-13&number=1&house=lords

15. Leon Wolfson

There was a major fuss about it which started from the EU Human Rights commissioner, who kept it in the press.

Come now, there are plenty of examples…are you quibbling with my premise?

Well Labour is the original anti Europe party.

17. Chaise Guevara

“Perhaps the biggest incentive for the intellectuals in Labour to become increasingly suspicious of EU membership has been its hegemonic role it has played in facilitating the expansion of capitalism and imperialism at the expense of the environment peace and social justice.”

What does this mean, exactly? And how does the idea that the EU is the enemy of social justice square with your later statement that the EU is a driver of equality?

For the record I am a supporter of the EU, warts and all. But EMU was an insane plan, foisted undemocratically on the European politicians (notably by Mitterand and Kohl, both of whom were postumously shown to have been deeply corrupt). Its problems were all too forseeable – if anything, critics didn’t warn enough. Brown and Balls haven’t had enough credit for keeping Britain out. The pro-EMU politicians in all three parties – and the European politicians and bureaucrats who produced it – haven’t received anything like the stick they should be getting. They ooze contempt for ordinary people – if the voters don’t like what the EU propose, they are patronised as not understanding the great plans of the elites. Usually democratic processes are by-passed. Otherwise you get farces like the Danes rejecting the Maastricht Treaty in the 1992 referendum, only effectively to be told to do it again the next year and this time to vote the right way. It can’t be said enough – EMU was a policy mistake on a colossal level, for which millions are paying a very high price.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/XVJsj1XC

  2. Luke Bozier

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/XVJsj1XC

  3. Luke

    oh dear god help us… “@libcon: Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/KulCgwp5”

  4. David Smuts

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/XVJsj1XC

  5. Polittiscribe

    @libcon: Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not. This disease is spreading… http://t.co/ewmFa0QQ

  6. Christy Tuohy

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/XVJsj1XC

  7. sunny hundal

    Big change: Poll shows Labour voters are now more sceptical of the EU than not – http://t.co/3plc5xC8 (by @theGreenBenches)

  8. M Humphrey-Gaskin

    RT @sunny_hundal: Big change: Poll shows Labour voters r now more sceptical of the EU than not – http://t.co/qwo7YLqc (by @TheGreenBenches)

  9. Gawain Little

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/XVJsj1XC

  10. Dr Eoin Clarke

    RT @libcon: Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not http://t.co/G0kBOaaX

  11. Less EU is More

    RT @libcon: Labour voters now more sceptical of #EU than not http://t.co/QWK5oBek < time for a referendum #No2EU

  12. paulstpancras

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not – http://t.co/Tf68Rst8 #eu #eurochat #labour

  13. TheCreativeCrip

    Labour voters now more sceptical of EU than not – http://t.co/Tf68Rst8 #eu #eurochat #labour

  14. mkpdavies

    http://t.co/xRrzrCnn
    "The latest YouGov poll… http://t.co/IHdkme7Y

  15. Ed Miliband – are you listening? : Vote UK Out of EU

    [...] Clarke, on the left-of-centre blog Liberal Conspiracy, has written an article based on the Vote UK Out of EU/YouGov poll which looks at the rising Euroscepticism amongst Labour [...]





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