David Cameron should hold the EU referendum sooner, says Scunthorpe MP Nic Dakin
MPs in North Lincolnshire have called for a referendum to be held sooner rather than later, as Prime Minister David Cameron gave his keynote speech on Europe.
Mr Cameron has promised a referendum by 2017 and warns that democratic consent for EU is 'wafer thin'.
He said: "Those who refuse to contemplate consulting the British people, would in my view make more likely our eventual exit.
"Simply asking the British people to carry on accepting a European settlement over which they have had little choice is a path to ensuring that when the question is finally put - and at some stage it will have to be - it is much more likely that the British people will reject the EU.
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"That is why I am in favour of a referendum. I believe in confronting this issue - shaping it, leading the debate. Not simply hoping a difficult situation will go away.
"The next Conservative Manifesto in 2015 will ask for a mandate from the British people for a Conservative government to negotiate a new settlement with our European partners in the next Parliament.
"It will be a relationship with the single market at its heart.
"And when we have negotiated that new settlement, we will give the British people a referendum with a very simple in or out choice. To stay in the EU on these new terms; or come out altogether.
"It will be an in/out referendum."
MP for Brigg and Goole, Andrew Percy, said: "As someone who has voted for a referendum in Parliament, I strongly support the Prime Minister's speech and promise of an in/out referendum.
"I know many people across North Lincolnshire want to have a say on our relationship with the EU and now they are being offered that.
"The Conservative Party will be the only party going in to the next election offering a referendum and capable of delivering it."
But Scunthorpe MP Nic Dakin is concerned about the delay.
He believes an in/out referendum should be held sooner rather than later.
He said: "If we are to have an in/out referendum on Europe we should have it as soon as possible.
"To delay is to increase uncertainty and risk losing out on jobs and economic growth. It is particularly important for us locally that we don't do anything to put at risk jobs in the steel industry and its supply chain when so much of the market for the goods we make here is in the European Union."
Speaking about trade, Mr Cameron said: "At the core of the European Union must be, as it is now, the single market. Britain is at the heart of that single market, and must remain so.
"But when the single market remains incomplete in services, energy and digital - the very sectors that are the engines of a modern economy - it is only half the success it could be.
"It is nonsense that people shopping online in some parts of Europe are unable to access the best deals because of where they live. I want completing the single market to be our driving mission."
Cleethorpe's MP Martin Vickers said: "I warmly welcome the announcement. As far as I'm concerned the referendum should be done the sooner the better. It's only right that the British people should decide the direction that the country goes in and it's now clear the only way people can achieve the much-needed and wanted referendum is to vote conservative.
"I am staggered at the attitude the Labour Party has taken."
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