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Brexit had to happen – this is why

This government is committed to pushing on with the Brexit programme (Getty/iStock)

The case for Brexit was very simple: it was the retrieval of self-government by the British people. When the Heath government joined the EU in 1973, with a referendum in 1975 under Harold Wilson’s Labour government, both governments argued that British self-government was not at risk: we were joining a customs union only.

Tony Benn and Enoch Powell, at opposite ends of the political spectrum, warned that this would eventually lead to the loss of sovereignty, and in the intervening 40 years have been proved right. The EU has moved steadily towards its stated aim of a federal state of a “united Europe”, acquiring power over not merely trade but also regulation of all industrial and social areas of life, owing to the creation of the single market and then the Social Chapter.

The final straw for the British public was uncontrolled immigration from EU…

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