Friday 9 December 2016

Brexit referendum - Cameron's last-ditch plea to voters: 'Brits don't quit'

David Beckham declares for Remain side, saying ‘you can’t win in Europe unless you’re on the pitch’

Laura Hughes

Published 22/06/2016 | 02:30

British Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a statement on the steps of Downing Street outlining his position on the future of the United Kingdom. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
British Prime Minister David Cameron delivers a statement on the steps of Downing Street outlining his position on the future of the United Kingdom. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

British Prime Minister David Cameron appeared outside No 10 Downing Street exhorting voters to remain within the EU, saying: "Brits don't quit".

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Mr Cameron said: "We get involved, we take a lead, we get things done. If we left, they would be making decisions about us, without us."

Mr Cameron said he wants to take "a pause" and make a personal plea to the nation about this important decision.

He claimed membership of the EU "helps" him to keep Britain safe and "my main responsibility is to keep you safe".

He added: "When we are part of these institutions we have a bigger place in the world. When we are in these organisations we become a bigger force in the world with a bigger influence.

"In the European Union, with 27 other countries behind us, we can take a stronger lead", he said. "Above all, it's about our economy. It will be stronger if we stay, it will be weaker if we leave. In the short term facing recession, in the medium term a decade of uncertainty, in the long term living with fewer jobs.

"I know Europe isn't perfect. That's why we negotiated and enhanced our status. We have the best of both worlds.

"So as you take this decision whether to remain or leave, think about the hopes and dreams of your children and grandchildren.

"Their chances to work and travel rests on this outcome. They can't undo the decision we take. If we vote out that's it, we will leave Europe for good.

"The next generation will have to live with the consequences far longer than the rest of us."

He was speaking as the campaign for Britain to stay in the European Union lost some of its lead over the rival 'Out' camp ahead of tomorrow's EU membership referendum, according to an opinion poll published yesterday.

The Survation poll put support for 'In' at 45pc ahead of 'Out' on 44pc, IG said.

Survation's previous poll, for the 'Mail on Sunday' newspaper and published late on Saturday, had shown 'In' ahead of 'Out' by 45-42pc.

The new Survation poll was conducted by telephone on June 20, IG said.

Yesterday, David Beckham urged people to vote to stay in the European Union, saying the UK should be "facing the problems of the world together and not alone".

The ex-footballer and Unicef ambassador said people should think of their children and grandchildren before the vote.

He said his experience playing across Europe instilled in him the importance of a "vibrant and connected world".

However, 'Vote Leave' said they had support from other footballers, like Sol Campbell.

Meanwhile, Victoria Beckham has accused 'Leave' supporters of trying to "misuse" comments she made in the past about Europe.

Ms Beckham said she shared her husband's views and attacked the Leave.EU campaign after it posted a message on Twitter suggesting she believed EU bureaucrats were "destroying" the UK's "national identity and individuality". It went on to suggest David Beckham "should have listened to the missus".

Writing on Instagram, the fashion designer said 'Leave' campaigners were "trying to put a spin on quotes made 20 years ago about keeping or losing the pound", which she said had nothing to do with the current debate.

"I have to say strongly my comments should not be misused in this country," she said.

"I believe in my country. I believe in a future for my children where we are stronger together and I support the 'Remain' campaign".

Mr Cameron, who worked closely with the footballer in the unsuccessful bid to bring the 2018 World Cup to the UK, said people should heed what the Beckhams were saying.

Read more: Brexit: What do these famous faces think about the EU referendum?

"There was a very moving statement today from David Beckham talking about his children and saying how effectively, what he said to me was, 'you can't win in Europe, unless you're on the pitch'," he told ITV's 'Lorraine'.

But 'Leave' campaigner Michael Gove told the BBC it had the support of former England internationals Sol Campbell and John Barnes and joked that, being a QPR supporter, he relished being the underdog.

Irish Independent

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