In or out? That will be the question for British voters come June 23 when they’ll decide whether Britain should stay in or pull out of the European Union.
The term for the possibility of a British exit is being dubbed a “Brexit.”
This weekend Prime Minister David Cameron met with European Union leaders in Brussels and won special status for Britain within the EU. That means the country doesn’t have to pay for things like child-tax credits or other types of financial aid for EU citizens in countries other than Britain.
Marketplace European correspondent Stephen Beard said big businesses want to stay in the EU because they fear Britain will encounter major tariff barriers if the country pulls out. But small to medium businesses feel differently and actually support “Brexit.”
“These are the biggest employers overall in the country who don’t trade with the EU,” Beard said. “And yet they have the cost and the burden of all the EU regulations and the red tape.”
But ultimately it won’t be businesses making the decision on whether Britain will stay or go. The people making that decision will be everyday voters.
“The polls are indicating a 50-50 split. Right down the middle,” Beard said.
The big issue for people who want to get out of the EU is immigration. They believe that the situation is chaotic and that if Britain is no longer in the EU, immigrants will have a harder time trying to get into the country, according to Beard.
Marketplace is on a mission.
We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.
Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?