As the countdown to the EU referendum debate continues, the momentum appears to have continued to swing towards Brexit: ‘Leave’ went ahead in the polls last week, with one survey putting them five points clear of ‘Remain’. What’s more, David Cameron has looked more and more rattled. Yesterday, he had to answer questions on Marr about whether he really believed his warnings over Brexit, given that the UK leaving the European Union now doesn’t seem so unlikely. So if Project Fear isn’t paying off, what can the ‘Remain’ camp do to try and regain control of the debate? The answer for the Prime Minister this week is to take a step back from the campaign trail. Instead, Labour figures from the past and present will be urging their party’s supporters not to back Brexit. Today, it’s the turn of Gordon Brown. He’ll say:
‘From now until 10pm on 23 June, we will not rest and I will not stop explaining why 9 million Labour voters have most to gain from remaining in the EU.’
So whilst Brown’s enthusiasm can’t be faulted, can his intervention actually help? One of the key parts of his strategy will be in putting forwards a ‘positive’ case for remaining in the EU. This could prove particularly powerful in reaching out to a core of Labour voters who will have been switched off by the warnings against Brexit issued by the Government. He’ll also talk about an EU ‘solidarity’ fund for areas overwhelmed by migrants, which, at least partly, is addressing one of the key factors which could swing this debate: migration.
Brown won’t be alone this week in trying to convince Labour voters of the importance of staying in: Jeremy Corbyn, Hillary Benn, Tom Watson and Harriet Harman are all hitting the campaign trail as well.