Douglas Carswell

19 FEB 2016

The 'renegotiation' charade is over. Let the campaign begin!

This morning the PM will come back from Brussels duff deal in hand. Months of talks that we were promised would reform Britain's relationship with the EU have changed nothing. Today marks the end of the 'new EU' myth. Now the real campaign begins.

The PM intended these talks to show that the question before Britain wasn't In or Out. He wanted to show there was a third way – that the EU could change. Instead, he has proved it can't. We now know categorically that the EU will hold onto the 'acquis communautaire' come what may. Powers once taken by Brussels will never be given back.

It's because the EU will never stop centralising that the stakes are so high. This referendum isn't just In or Out; it's now or never.

The important thing in the Leave campaign is that Leave wins. It doesn't matter who leads it. It doesn't matter who said what about which campaign group. It doesn't matter who takes the credit.

Instead of focusing on the few big names, we need to look toward the many. To win the referendum, we need to build a broad coalition of voters – bigger than any political party has assembled in recent history. If the campaign is narrow and sectional, we will lose.

We need multiple voices to reach out to people of multiple different backgrounds and opinions. We have to emphasise that people who disagree on everything else should vote Leave to ensure that those disagreements are thrashed out in a democratic, sovereign Parliament, not ignored by remote officials. Above all, we need to be positive, and show that Britain will be better off out.

We have four months to secure a bright future for Britain. Let's work together to Leave.

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