Balearic Partido Popular MEP Rosa Estaras was in Palma this week and she told the Bulletin that the time has come for common sense to prevail over the Brexit process, especially in the United Kingdom with the all-important parliamentary vote on Theresa May’s deal this Tuesday.
Estaras, who has been a Member of the European Parliament since 2009, said that Brexit is a painful process for both the UK and the European family. "Instead of growing, we are losing an important member and the project now is not reversible. We’ve all read the 600-page deal which Jean-Claude Juncker signed off on and now it’s up to Westminster to decide what they what they want for the United Kingdom.
"The tragedy in all of this is that Brexit was based on fake news and nationalist populism which is taking root across the European Union. The people of the UK were lied to, they were cheated and the individuals responsible for all that have since disappeared. And what Brexit has shown is that that the European project is not irreversible. It’s a solid family.
"This is the time for common sense to prevail, this is not the time for populist politics which pose a threat to democracy as a whole. As incredible as it seems, democracy is again in danger by the emergence of extremist political movements, nationalist, populist and authoritarian. Apart from Brexit, the European elections this year are the most decisive in history, and we all need to be thinking on the same page.
"Fine, the United Kingdom has decided to leave, but we all have to seriously think about what happens next and I feel that neither the UK nor the EU reacted quickly enough to the result of the referendum two years ago. Had the EU responded earlier, perhaps all this uncertainty and this messy divorce could have been avoided.
"My advice to MPs in the UK ahead of the vote on Tuesday is to think about the welfare of the country, society at large, the future and not about themselves. There are big issues which still have to be resolved, the judiciary, customs, the movement of trade and people, security, cross-border policing. Even when the UK has finally left the EU, there are still going to be matters on which we are going to have to continue cooperating.
"There is still the issue of Gibraltar, for example. Spain wants to offer dual nationality, build a better working relationship, instal some much needed fiscal rules and regulations, but there is a lack of willingness to sit down and seriously discuss these matters.
"Brexit, which is much more of an issue than just immigration, which is how it was sold by those with vested interests in leaving the EU, has had a damaging effect not only on the EU but also the UK. It has split society, there is a massive social divide in the UK and it is all because of the fake news people were fed in the run-up to the referendum. Now that the majority of people have come to realise what the real consequences could be, that divide has become even wider. There is real concern about what is going to happen. For all we know, there may be no deal. Tuesday is going to be one of the most important days in modern history for the United Kingdom.
"The rise of populist nationalism in politics, be it on the far left or right, has already hurt the UK and now poses a threat to the future and well-being of everyone living inside the European Union and it has to be curtailed. Democracy has to prevail."