Author: Elżbieta Kużelewska
Institution: University of Białystok
Author: Bogusia Puchalska
Institution: University of Central Lancashire in Preston
Year of publication: 2017
Source: Show
Pages: 77-96
DOI Address: https://doi.org/10.15804/athena.2017.56.05
PDF: apsp/56/apsp5605.pdf

EEC/EU membership has been one of the thorniest issues in British politics over the last 45 years. The 1975 referendum confirmed the UK’s will to stay in the EEC, but it failed to put to rest the argument over Europe. The 2016 referendum took Britain into the opposite direction, but it also reinstated the issue of the EU to the prime slot in British politics, where it is going to stay for the many years needed to settle the new relationship with the EU. The main drivers behind both referenda were the power struggle between the main parties and the gradual entrenchment of Euroscepticism as the dominating standpoint in British right-wing politics. The substantive concerns with EEC/ EU membership were merely a backdrop to the partisan battles leading to both referenda, but the crucial differentiating factor in 2016 was the Conservative perception of the threat posed by UKIP. The Eurozone crisis and austerity policies at home added to the potent mix of disillusion among the voters, who became receptive to promises of return to past glories of the UK freed from the shackles of Brussels.

DWA BRYTYJSKIE REFERENDA W SPRAWIE UE, DWA KIERUNKI PODRÓŻY

Członkostwo Wielkiej Brytanii w EWG/UE było jednym z najbardziej drażliwych problemów w polityce brytyjskiej w ciągu ostatnich 45 lat. Referendum z 1975 r. potwierdziło wolę pozostania Wielkiej Brytanii w EWG, ale nie udało mu się wyciszyć sporów na temat Europy. Referendum w 2016 r. poprowadziło Brytyjczyków w odwrotnym kierunku, niemniej przywróciło kwestię UE do naczelnego miejsca w polityce brytyjskiej, gdzie pozostanie przez wiele lat celem uregulowania nowych stosunków z UE. Głównymi powodami obu referendów były walka o władzę między partiami politycznymi i stopniowe umacnianie się eurosceptycyzmu jako dominującego punktu odniesienia w polityce brytyjskich ugrupowań prawicowych. Istotne obawy związane z członkostwem w EWG/UE stanowiły jedynie tło kampanii zwolenników, prowadzące do obu referendów, ale istotnym czynnikiem różnicującym w 2016 r. było postrzeganie przez Partię Konserwatywną zagrożeń ze strony UKIP. Kryzys w strefie euro i polityka oszczędności w kraju przyczyniły się do silnego rozczarowania wyborców, którzy stali się otwarci na obietnice powrotu do chwalebnej przeszłości Zjednoczonego Królestwa, uwolnionego z kajdan narzuconych przez Brukselę.

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