Brexit may 'ignite true reform' in the EU says MEP
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Michiel Hoogeveen, a member of the European Conservatives and Reformists Group, has taken the place of Dirk Jan Eppink in the assembly after the latter quit, having been elected to the Dutch Parliament last month. And he did not hold back in his maiden speech in the Parliament today, in which he sent a stark message to colleagues about the risky path the EU was now on.
Let Brexit be a warning for the European Union
He said: “Brexit is here to stay. As a sovereign country, the UK had its right to leave, and that choice should be respected.
”In the meantime, let Brexit be a warning for the European Union.
”Because the direction our union is heading will only lead to more countries wanting to leave.
“Our combined fiscal deficits is at nightmare proportions.
“The European Commission has even started issuing common debt and the European Central Bank prints money like there is no tomorrow.”
Mr Hoogeveen warned: ”Colleagues, we are at a crossroads.
“Are we heading towards this federalised European Union, or do we want a community of sovereign European nation states?
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“It is often stated that my generation is the so-called anti-Brexit generation, but I’m standing here today in front of you as a representative of a new generation of conservatives that doesn’t want to open borders.
“That doesn’t want to pay for the excessive debt that is needed for capital transfers from north to south.
“And that doesn’t want an overarching ever-expanding bureaucracy that tells us what we can or cannot do.
“Let Brexit be the spark that ignites true reform in the European Union and an EU where sovereignty is no longer a dirty word.
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“But instead, the cornerstone of our common future.”
Mr Hoogeveen’s comments about Brexit and the UK came on the day the Parliament discussed the ratification of the EU’s post-Brexit trade deal with the EU.
Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Union, said: “This agreement comes with real teeth with a binding dispute settlement mechanism and the possibility for unilateral remedial measures when necessary.
“Let me be very clear, we do not want to have to use these tools, but we will not hesitate to use them if necessary.
“They are essential to ensure full compliance with the TCA.”
Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, added: “This is a divorce. It’s a warning, Brexit, and it’s a failure – a failure of the European Union.
“And we have to learn lessons from it as politicians here in the European Parliament, in council, in the Commission, in all of the capitals.
“Why did 52 percent of the British vote against Europe? There are reasons for that – social anger and tension which existed in many regions in the UK but also in many regions of the EU.”
Meanwhile, in contrast to Mr Hoogeveen, Manfred Weber, the German leader of the centre-right EPP Group, pointed the finger at the UK. with a bitter swipe at Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
He said: “When I grew up, UK diplomacy was for me a symbol of credibility.
“Today, when we see the Northern Ireland Protocol implementation and how Johnson behaves, the message is ‘I don’t care, I don’t care even about my signature’.
“That’s the new Great Britain we have as a partner on our side.”
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