Campaigns

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    Campaigning leaflets from the first European Parliament election in 1979

Campaigning leaflets from the first European Parliament election in 1979

LSE Library curator Daniel Payne shares some of his favourite images from the first European Parliament elections in 1979.

The first ever European Parliament elections were held 40 years ago, with an average voter turnout across the member states of 62% (the UK had just 32%). Since then, LSE Library has been documenting the UK’s relationship with Europe through an […]

When a tactical vote may not work: the complex choice facing Remainers in the EP elections

Remainers seeking to maximise the impact of their vote in the European Parliament election face a difficult choice. Heinz Brandenburg (University of Strathclyde) explains why district magnitude is such a key factor in the d’Hondt system, and why it means that different regions call for different voting strategies.

The European Parliament (EP) Elections in the UK on 23 May will […]

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    It is the interplay between economic factors and individual attitudes that explains Brexit

It is the interplay between economic factors and individual attitudes that explains Brexit

Economic and cultural factors are often presented as alternative explanations of Brexit. Miguel Carreras, Yasemin Irepoglu Carreras, and Shaun Bowler (University of California, Riverside) explain why both actually matter and how they are related to each other.

Recent political developments in advanced democracies have generated a scholarly debate on what led to these results. While some scholars argue that economic grievances among […]

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    Deal or No Deal, or Remain: the only way out is to ask the people exactly what they want

Deal or No Deal, or Remain: the only way out is to ask the people exactly what they want

There is deadlock over Brexit because the “will of the People” is contradictory, argues Anthony McGann (University of Strathclyde). The people voted to leave the EU, but do not support any of the feasible Brexit options. This paradox is an example of a social choice problem called the “Discursive Dilemma”. The only way out is a referendum that asks the […]

These European Parliament elections could remake our politics

If the European Parliament elections go ahead in May, writes Patrick English (University of Exeter), the contest will be phenomenally intriguing. He looks at where the votes of former Conservative and Ukip supporters are likely to go and finds that Labour’s ambiguous Brexit stance does not appear to be doing much damage to the party’s support among Remain voters.

Few […]

Voting for Brexit has already made the UK poorer

How has voting to leave the EU affected the UK’s economy? The difficulty in answering this question is that we do not know what would have happened to the economy if Remain had won. Consequently, researchers look for ways to estimate what would have happened. For example, how would the UK’s economic output have changed since June 2016 if […]

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    Notes on compromise: joining the EEA is not the same as staying in the EU

Notes on compromise: joining the EEA is not the same as staying in the EU

On behalf of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has urged that the UK leave the EU but remain within the Customs Union. It should seek also to join the European Economic Area on the same terms as Norway and Iceland enjoy. Many others have defended the same proposal. On a free vote, it would probably command a majority in the House […]

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    Had austerity not happened, Leave support could have been up to 10% lower

Had austerity not happened, Leave support could have been up to 10% lower

A series of cuts since the Coalition government curtailed the welfare state, activating this way a range of existing economic grievances. As a result, in districts that received the average austerity shock UKIP vote shares were up, compared to districts with little exposure to austerity. Thiemo Fetzer writes that the tight link between UKIP vote shares and an area’s […]

Brexit and British exceptionalism: the impossible challenge for Remainers

Since 2016, a number of high profile ‘Revocateurs’, among them Tony Blair, Alastair Campbell and Andrew Adonis, have appealed for a fresh referendum on the EU in Britain. Leaving aside the complex practicalities and politics of the ‘neverendum’ idea, Oliver Daddow (University of Nottingham) argues there is no evidence either that Revocateurs were the victims in Act One of the ‘Britain and Europe’ story, or that […]

Campaigners for a second referendum must be clear about what voters would be asked

The offer of ‘a second referendum’ is too vague to elicit a useful response, writes Jennifer Hornsby (Birkbeck, University of London). It is unclear to voters whether the option of staying in the EU would still be on the table, whether such a vote would be a rerun of June 2016, or if they would be voting to accept or […]