In the 2016 Referendum the people decided to leave the European Union but had very little idea of the effects this would have on their country. Therefore when the terms of separation are agreed the people must have the right to decide again, provided they now understand these effects. To avoid another defective decision (which might lead to demands for further votes) we suggest a test of eligibility to register for the second referendum, so that those who have not sufficiently understood or informed themselves about the deal and its likely consequences can be excluded from the vote. It is important, however, that the total number of votes cast be comparable with that of the first referendum to avoid criticism that the choice was now only for the elites.
Since it is already not possible to hold the vote before the end of March 2019, when the Article 50 withdrawal process formally ends, this would be a vote on whether to re-enter the EU on the terms clearly stated in the negotiated agreement, provided there is one.
Here is our suggestion for this quiz:
HM Government: Voter Registration Test
To qualify for a vote in the forthcoming Referendum on whether the UK should apply to re-enter the EU you must achieve a pass mark of 50% or above by answering the following questions. Your answers will be marked by a team comprising members of the following impartial organisations: UK Treasury, IMF, CBI, Financial Times, The Economist newspaper. You have 30 minutes to answer the questions below. Please ensure you have entered your registration details then place your completed answer form in the envelope provided and hand it to the Returning Officer.
- How much worse off will you be in 15 years than if we had stayed as members of the EU? (A percentage expected change in assets and annual income will be sufficient.)
- How much better off will you be in 15 years than if we decide to re-enter the EU? (Assume the terms for re-admittance will include giving up the UK rebate.)
- What will the pound be worth against the euro by the end of September 2019? (Assume that the eurozone remains intact and that the ECB will have solved the Italian financial crisis, or at least postponed it as it has all previous crises).
- Will the UK be required to adopt the single currency if it re-enters the EU? (This is a mandatory for all new entrants.)
- Will UK defence forces be required to join the EU ‘s common defence arrangements, with military action decided by Qualified Majority Voting of member states? Which of the following examples of past conflicts do you think UK forces would have engaged in under similar QMV rules: Falklands/Malvinas (1982), Gulf (1990), Kosovo (1998), Sierra Leone (2000 – start of UK engagement), Iraq (2003), Libya (2011)? (Tick each of those that apply.)
- What types of decisions by the UK Supreme Court will be subject to appeal to the European Court of Justice? Give at least one example.
- If the UK re-enters the EU on the terms offered and eurozone member Italy were subsequently in danger of default, what would be the UK’s share in its rescue? (Answer to the nearest €10 billion and assume the UK’s share in such a rescue will be proportional to its share of the EU’s total GDP.)
- What value will the harmonised corporate tax rate be when the UK rejoins the EU?
- Under the proposed re-entry terms, what powers will the UK have to prevent or opt-out of further political integration? (Ever Closer Union is enshrined under the Treaty of Rome.)
- Under the proposed re-entry terms, might the UK be obliged to accept immigration or refugee quotas?