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EU Referendum

Time to halt the smears spin and threats: IAIN DUNCAN SMITH on how No10 is trying to bully Britain into staying in EU

  • Iain Duncan Smith with a devastating attack on No10 and bid to stay in EU
  • He claims ‘spin, smears and threats’ have been delivered by Government
  • Also said series of ‘highly questionable’ dossiers had threatened the public
  • He claims Number Ten and Foreign Office of ‘bullying’ Britain to stay in EU 

Writing in today’s Mail, he said a series of ‘highly questionable’ dossiers churned out by Number Ten and the Foreign Office had threatened the public with ‘almost Biblical consequences’ if they dared to vote to leave.

And he warns of lasting damage to British politics beyond the June 23 referendum if David Cameron and the other leading players in the Remain camp do not conduct the debate in a more ‘respectful manner’.

Iain Duncan Smith is attacking the ‘spin, smears and threats’ being deployed by the Government machine to ‘bully’ Britain into remaining inside the EU
Iain Duncan Smith is attacking the ‘spin, smears and threats’ being deployed by the Government machine to ‘bully’ Britain into remaining inside the EU
Two weeks after the Prime Minister returned from Brussels with his EU deal, the debate on the European Union has shifted significantly. The Remain campaign’s case seems almost wholly based on what they describe as the nightmare of leaving. This case has in whole or in part become characterised by spin, smears and threats.

This was not what we were told the debate would be about and so for those keen to stay in the EU I register a concern and also a challenge.

In the last fortnight we have had a series of highly questionable dossiers – threatening almost biblical consequences if we dare to consider a future outside of the European Union.

We’ve seen a series of stunts, whereby big businesses, big banks, and powerful politicians from other EU member states seek to bully the British people into believing their jobs and security are at risk. The impartiality and integrity of the civil service – on whose credibility the whole institution of Government depends – has even been called into question by Parliament.

The acrimonious manner in which all this has been conducted is troubling, and will I fear have consequences long beyond June 23. After all, such desperate and unsubstantiated claims are now being made that they begin to damage the very integrity of those who make them in the eyes of the public.

The biggest danger to the European Union comes not from those who advocate departure, but from those who denounce such thinking as heretical and dangerous.

This is the most important question we have faced in a generation, and it is vitally important that the debate is conducted in a respectful manner – where we maturely interrogate the issues, rather than indulge in scaremongering.

And so that brings me to the challenge.

In January 2013, the Prime Minister made an excellent speech, setting out his vision for a reformed European Union. He made a powerful case for ‘fundamental, far-reaching change’ – without which he said the EU ‘would make our countries weaker not stronger’.

Now, I know that the Prime Minister entered the negotiations with good intent. He said at the time that ‘with courage and conviction, I believe we can deliver a more flexible, adaptable and open European Union’.

The problem was that he was faced with the final reality that the EU is disinclined to make such fundamental reform.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3475696/Time-halt-smears-spin-threats-IAIN-DUNCAN-SMITH-No10-trying-bully-Britain-staying-EU.html

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