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The UK’s post-election relationship with the EU

THE UK’S POST-ELECTION RELATIONSHIP WITH THE EUThe United Kingdom’s soured relationship with the European Union since the Brexit referendum eight years ago could improve somewhat, with Britain’s new Labour government led by Sir Keir Starmer.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the EU’s current relationship with its closest partner, the United States, in the lead up to its November election.

The EU hardly got a mention from either the centre-left Labour or right-wing Conservative parties during the run-up to the British election, which gave Labour a landslide victory. The Conservatives, who had been in power for 14 years, fully endorsed the outcome of the Brexit referendum, which resulted in just short of 52% of voters choosing “leave”. Many do not regret that result, even though it bitterly divided the nation, and has led to a serious economic downturn.

Portugal, historically the UK’s oldest ally, is an unequivocal supporter of the EU and was shocked by Brexit. While Britain’s Labour Party opposed Brexit, it agreed to “uphold the wishes of the British people.”

Labour avoided the subject during this year’s election campaign and manifesto, for fear of upsetting disaffected Conservative pro-Brexiteers they wanted to swing their way. However, Starmer has said that under his leadership he will not try to fully rejoin the EU, but will seek to soften the unpleasant relationship that has developed.

This is viewed as of special importance to the EU, as the bloc is still the UK’s largest trading partner. There are common problems too, such as tackling the high rate of illegal immigration.

The EU may not maintain its close partnership with the United States, unless Joe Biden steps down and is replaced by a much more competent Democratic Party presidential candidate for the November election. His age and recent follies make him much less likely to win the presidential race against Donald Trump. A return to the White House by Trump is widely predicted to be disastrous, not only for the EU, but much of the whole world due to his attitude to such things as NATO, the war in Ukraine and the existential global warming crisis.

Written by Len Port -  Photo courtesy of Depositphotos.com

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