Brexit will strengthen the Union

Brexit will strengthen the Union, not weaken it. The vast majority of Scottish & Ulster trade is far and away with the rest of the UK. Scottish trade with the EU is down 20% in the last year with the USA being Scotland’s single biggest export country. The Republic of Ireland accounts for only just over 4% of Northern Ireland sales (which is more than Northern Ireland sales to the rest of the EU put together)

A report from Barclays concludes: “In that environment, Scottish voters could be even less inclined to leave the relative safety of the UK for an increasingly uncertain EU.”

The combined Nationalist vote in Northern Ireland has dropped consecutively in the last 3 election to 36%.

Both Scotland & NI run huge deficits.

Both are subsidised through the barnett formula giving much higher spending per head of population than England.

The price of oil is rock bottom which leaves a huge black hole in the SNP independence referendum numbers.

An “independent” Scotland within the EU is an oxymoron. Scotland would have to vote for independence and then give away powers to the EU and join the Euro.

We now have a Welshman (David Davis) in charge of Brexit & a Scotsman (Dr Liam Fox) as the first UK trade Minister in 40 years which is a prime example that cultural, economic & political ties throughout the UK are much stronger than anything in the undemocratic EU.

Former SNP Deputy Leader Jim Fairlie has stated If the 2IndyRef includes the SNP devotion to the EU, it will split the Nationalist movement

Despite Nationalist politicians being in Brexit denial, the referendum question was “Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or Leave the European Union?”. When they put their x in the box, that is the question they were answering – it did not reference constituent parts or regions of the UK.

EU Ballot

Rather than border polls & all-island Brexit forums we should be using existing bodies such as the North-South Ministerial Council, The British-Irish Council and the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly all of which have already held discussions about Brexit.

The latter two include representatives from around the various legislative bodies across the British Isles and as such would provide a much better setting for Unionist engagement in such discussions and avoid duplication as many of the issues affect other parts of the UK.

Indeed their is scope to further enhance these East-West bodies and also strengthen the Common Travel Area and Commonwealth ties.  Indeed Royal Commonwealth Society polling shows strong support for a visa free travel/work bloc between the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. and free trade deals.

There is also scope for genuine much needed constitutional reform in the UK post devolution and recently we have seen Westminister report calling for a new Act of Union, effectively a federal UK.  The Deputy leader of UKIP has previously released a similar plan that would see the House of Lords becoming the UK Parliament.

I have previously written about both a federal UK and a border poll.

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