IAN HART: Still very much in the '˜don't know' camp
My referendum polling card arrived on the door mat this week and although I'm more than happy to accept the invitation to Offington Park Methodist Church on Thursday, June 23, I'm still not sure which box I'm going to be putting my cross in.
While I can remember 1975 as a year, my recollection, as a ten-year-old, of the dynamics of the yes/no EEC vote back then is extremely minimal.
Having read up on it since it must have been unique to have the likes of Enoch Powell and Tony Benn, both great statesmen but poles apart politically, campaigning on the same side, and the same can also be said this time with Messrs Cameron and Osborne effectively standing shoulder to shoulder with senior members of the opposition parties.
The ‘fear’ campaign is well and truly in operation – the ‘stay in’ lobby have gone from predicting a European war to Britain going back into recession if we leave.
Meanwhile the Brexit campaign has looked into the future and predicted the UK engulfed in a sea of illegal immigrants if we stay.
Another trump card by the ‘stay in’ lobby is the possibility of a fall in house prices, but bizarrely with Harty Junior on the move next month and having to get a 40-year mortgage, anything to help the generation of first-time-buyers in this country is, to my mind, a positive rather than a negative.
What does seem certain is that come June 24, whatever the result, certain political careers could be blighted forever.
If we vote ‘out’ it makes Cameron’s position as Prime Minister untenable, and while he had previously said he would step down before the next election, he’d be hard pushed to make it through to the autumn party conference.
While over at Brexit, is Boris Johnson using the vote to make his ultimate political move?
Effectively, the referendum is also an indirect election of the next Prime Minister.
Osborne or Johnson? Perhaps an even more important choice than staying in or out of Europe?
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