Prime Minister Theresa May has today announced that Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon will be triggered in March 2017. Article 50 outlines the process for leaving the European Union – a notice period of two years is set to negotiate the terms of departure from the Union, with a set exit date being placed – whether or not negotiations are complete or not.
This comes just days after it surfaced that Brexit Secretary David Davis favours a ‘hard Brexit’, which is to say one that forgoes Single Market access to have stronger immigration controls. A research poll by BMG for the Independent showed that 52% of the British public favoured a ‘soft Brexit’ – one that involves staying in the Single Market – to lessen the impact that leaving may have on the economy.
Meanwhile, former Secretary of State for Education, and Women and Equalities Minister Nicky Morgan has said that ‘hard Brexit’ would breed new bigotry, and Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn said that the vote to leave must be respected, but not at the expense of the economy. The Lib Dems and their leader Tim Farron are still campaigning on a ‘don’t leave/rejoin the EU’ platform.
In a straw poll held at the Societies Fair in 2015, 83% of UCLan students were in favour of remaining in the European Union – as opposed to 53.2% wanting to leave for Preston as a whole.