Michael Kelly

Labour, Argyll and Bute

The Oban Times - - Election Special -

I be­lieve we should be pur­su­ing as soft a Brexit as pos­si­ble. The fact is that we are so in­te­grated with the EU that any dis­en­gage­ment is al­ready go­ing to take years to im­ple­ment, and we need to ex­er­cise the ut­most care to avoid do­ing dam­age to the econ­omy and caus­ing mas­sive dis­lo­ca­tion in our so­ci­ety.

Fur­ther­more, we should main­tain our mem­ber­ship in the var­i­ous EU associated or­gan­i­sa­tions such as the Euro­pean Medicines Agency and Europol. These or­gan­i­sa­tions al­low for co-op­er­a­tion on im­por­tant is­sues such as med­i­cal stan­dards and counter-ter­ror­ism. The ref­er­en­dum was on mem­ber­ship of the EU it­self, not whether our po­lice should share in­for­ma­tion with other gov­ern­ments.

I am against an indyref2. We have al­ready had a ref­er­en­dum and I see noth­ing to sug­gest that any­thing has changed. We need an end to the un­cer­tainty. How can we plan our fu­tures if we have to keep a con­stant watch over our shoul­ders for what might hap­pen?

What we need is a con­sti­tu­tional con­ven­tion to es­tab­lish a proper de­volved sys­tem for the United King­dom. Brexit means that a host of pow­ers are go­ing to be re­turned to the UK, and the Labour Party will in­tro­duce a ‘pre­sump­tion of de­vo­lu­tion’, where for­mer EU pow­ers would be au­to­mat­i­cally de­volved to the re­gional level.

As an MP, the most tan­gi­ble ben­e­fit I could bring to Argyll and Bute in my first year would be an end to aus­ter­ity. As a so­ci­ety we need these ser­vices, but the Con­ser­va­tive govern­ment is un­will­ing to put the money in.

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