Debating against Better Stay in speakers always produces the same attitudes. They spend half their time running down the EU they want to stay in, and the other half scaremongering about coming out! They always say they do not wish the UK to join the Euro. They stress the protections of the UK’s opt out and subsequent negotiations over avoiding the costs and rules the single currency imposes. They usually rejoice that we are not in Schengen, implying that means we are also opted out of freedom of movement which of course still applies.
So the first question to Stay Inners is Why do you wish to belong to this organisation, when you disagree with its two central features, the currency and the common borders? It is like joining a cricket club, only to announce you have no wish to either play or watch cricket, and then to complain that people talk about cricket at the odd social you attend as a member.
They should be asked how does the UK keep itself out of consequences of Schengen, when we have freedom of movement obligations with Schengen members?
They should be asked if they support the Common Fisheries policy? Do they think it has helped or damaged the UK fishing grounds and industry? Why did it take almost 40 years to get some basic reforms of its damaging policies? Wouldn’t we have better fishing grounds and a stronger industry if we left and controlled our own fish stocks?
They should be asked if they support the Common Agricultural policy, still the biggest cost in the EU? Do we get benefits from subsidising continental farmers? Wouldn’t it be cheaper for UK taxpayers to just subsidise our own farmers? Why did we get less milk quota than we needed? Why did they show such hostility to British beef?
They should be asked if they support the common energy policy? Hasn’t the EU requirements on renewables forced us to construct large numbers of onshore wind turbines which have affected the landscape and left us without reliable power? Isn’t EU energy policy a damaging mixture of supply restrictions and high prices, the very opposite of what we need to tackle fuel poverty and increase industrial investment?
They should be asked if EU policy towards Croatia and more recently Ukraine has helped or hindered stability.
And they should be asked why they think £10 billion of our money should be spent on rich countries on the continent.