The EU Referendum
It’s been perhaps the greatest upheaval in political life in this Country since the war. I wanted to write to set out my views.
I did not campaign to remain, or to indeed to leave the European Union. I had a view and I made that clear towards the end of both (rather poor) campaigns. But my clear aim of this referendum was to engage people in the debate, and with record turn-out and levels of interaction, I believe we achieved the aim.
The electorate have now spoken; I am a servant of the electorate in Plymouth. Government is of the people, by the people, for the people. It would be entirely wrong to not accept the result of the referendum simply because one does not want the outcome. I have written personally to the over 200 people who have written to me today on this subject. I cannot support your position.
I am here to do a job for Plymouth, and Plymouth has given me very clear instructions. Since I was elected I made clear this was AN issue for me, not THE issue.
It was one issue amongst the complex challenges we face in Plymouth in improving the life chances of our most vulnerable, our local thriving economy, and helping us truly fulfil that incredible potential we all know Plymouth and all who live here have; seeing concrete progress by 2020.
Myself and my team remain committed to these tasks. It is clear the majority want us to leave the EU. We will now get on and do that. We live in a hard-fought for democracy, and I’m proud of it.
We have a bright future in Plymouth. My job now is to grasp the opportunities this change in direction affords us; protect our City as much as possible from any unintended consequences and keep us firmly on the road towards greater prosperity, opportunities and life chances in this wonderful City as we aim towards the important celebrations of Mayflower 2020.
Thank you for all the support; and for the ‘encouragement’ as well. I will continue to do what I do every day, and work hard for our great City and the people who live here.
The future remains bright.