Brexit: Judges deny long-time expats right to vote

Mario Draghi, the President of the European Central Bank, has waded into the Brexit debate by warning against the consequences of Britain leaving the EU.

Relatively little has been heard so far from EU leaders on the once in a lifetime In/Out vote in Britain on 23 June.

But, in an interview, the Italian official said, “I cannot and do not want to believe that the Brits will vote to leave. However, if they do, it has to be clear: they will lose all the benefits of the single market.”


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His comments, in an article in the German daily Bild, are partly echoed by the Bank of England Governor Mark Carney.

In a letter sent to British MPs on the UK Treasury Select Committee, Canadian-born Carney says the only plausible consequences of a fall in sterling as a result of Brexit is, “a lower path for growth and a higher path for inflation.”

Elsewhere, U.S presidential candidate Ted Cruz has argued that the UK should be “at the front of the line” for a trade deal with the U.S. if it votes to leave the EU, dismissing President Barack Obama’s warning on the matter in his visit to the UK last week.

Meanwhile, a court has ruled that British expats who have been living in other EU countries for over 15 years will not have the right to vote in the EU referendum. The decision is expected to be appealed at the Supreme Court and affects some two million Britons abroad.

The court has rejected an attempt to force the government to grant millions of UK citizens living abroad a vote in this June’ s EU referendum.

The legal challenge brought by two disenfranchised expats on behalf of those living overseas for more than 15 years was dismissed by Lord Justice Lloyd Jones and Justice Blake.

The UK, the judges said, was entitled to adopt a cut-off period “at which extended residence abroad might indicate a weakening of ties with the United Kingdom.”

The ruling also noted that there would be “significant practical difficulties about adopting, especially for this referendum, a new electoral register which includes non-resident British citizens whose last residence in the UK was more than 15 years ago.”

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