One of the recurrent complaints constituents make to me is that they were deceived during the referendum campaign of 1975 with respect to the consequences for national sovereignty of remaining in the Common Market. They say that they were explicitly told that no decision could be made in Brussels without the agreement of a British minister responsible to Parliament. Were they lied to, as they believe? They were not: what they were told was true – at that time.
The fact is that the European Union is a continuously evolving institution. The rules changed: British ministers no longer enjoy such power to prevent decisions which they judge to be against our national interest, and they are over-ruled. The choice in the referendum is being presented as one of sticking with the certainties of the EU, against the unpredictable consequences of leaving. This is a false prospectus: there is no certainty about what the EU will evolve into next.
The only certainty is that we have been offered an opportunity to reclaim the ability to govern ourselves, or to leave increasing power in the hands of Brussels.