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June 16, 2016

Brexit vote: New Statesman, FT and three big regional dailies all come out in favour of staying inside the EU

By Freddy Mayhew

With one week to go until the EU Referendum and polls showing the nation is split down the middle on whether to leave or remain, a number of publications have nailed their colours to the mast.

Three regional dailies have come out in favour of Britain remaining within the European Union: the Manchester Evening News, the Liverpool Echo and The Journal, Newcastle.

It comes as Press Gazette launched its Brexitometer today, showing natuonal newspaper coverage from the last month has been weighted heavily in favour of Britain leaving the EU in this last month of the campaign.

The MEN said it “believes Greater Manchester will be better off inside [the EU]”, adding: We don’t live in a perfect world.

“We live in a more and more unpredictable world, one more in need of peace, calm and stability than at any time since the 1940s. One where agreement and unity, however hard-won, are precious.

“What has been true for Greater Manchester is true of Britain as a whole: although co-operation requires compromise, it is the only way to move forward.”

The Echo said staying in Europe was “right for the New Liverpool” and urged its readers to “keep Calm. Carry On. And vote Remain”.

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The Journal urged its readers to “do what’s best for the North East and vote to remain in the European Union”.

The Journal EU Front

Joining them for the Stronger In Europe campaign is the Financial Times, who declared in a leader column published online yesterday that “Britain should vote to stay in the EU”.

It said: “This is no time to revert to Little England. We are Great Britain. We have a contribution to make to a more prosperous, safer world. The vote must be ‘Remain’.”

Political weekly the New Statesman also today backed Remain, saying the EU is a “troubled institution” but that Britain should stay in so it can lead reform.

On the opposite side of the debate is The Spectator who joined The Sun in coming out for Brexit.

In a lengthy piece, the weekly political news magazine said: “On the week of the 1975 referendum, The Spectator’s cover line was: ‘Out – and into the world.’ We repeat that line today.

“Since 1975 the EU has mutated in exactly the way we then feared and now resembles nothing so much as the Habsburg Empire in its dying days. A bloated bureaucracy that has outgrown all usefulness.”

It added: “…Whatever happens, Britain will be better able to respond and adapt as a sovereign country living under its own laws. The history of the last two centuries can be summed up in two words: democracy matters. Let’s vote to defend it on 23 June.”

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