The Brexit debate will pave the way to the “collapse” of the European Union because of Brussels’ failure to understand the mistakes made, several former British MEPs warned upon Britain’s departure from the bloc. Speaking to Express.co.uk ahead of their last appearance in the European Parliament last Wednesday, British politicians shared their ominous forecast for the future of the bloc now the UK has freed itself from the shackles of EU institutions. Brexit Party MEP Martin Daubney said: “It’s going to collapse.
“What the Brexit Party had done is really shine a light on this. People were sceptical before but through I-phones, through citizen journalism, we’ve shown the waste that goes on in committee meetings, the way votes are rigged.
“The President of the EC, Ursula von der Leyen was on a ticket of one the same week Kim Jong-un was on a ticket of one in North Korea. That’s not a democracy when there’s one person to vote for.
“People are now seeing this for what it is, it’s a pantomime Parliament with a fig leaf of credibility. People will see the Brits as trailblazers to end the great European dream just turned into a nightmare.”
The European Council put forward Mrs von der Leyen as a successor to Jean-Claude Juncker in July 2019 and she was later confirmed despite all political groups within the European Parliament (EP) having named their own candidates. None of the proposed 14 names however was selected to be the new European Commission President.
The EU has been warned lack of flexibility and failure to reform could cause the union to collapse
Both Heaver and Daubney suggested there are growing feelings of discontent toward the EU
Former MEP Micheal Heaver told Express.co.uk a growing number of colleagues within the EP have admitted they are waiting to see whether Brexit will succeed before openly advocating for their countries’ withdrawal.
Mr Heaver said: “One of the most interesting things I found here talking to other European MEPs is the eurosceptic saying, ‘at the moment, we can’t advocate leaving the EU completely because it’s still seen as being too radical.’
“What they are saying is, ‘we hope that you succeed and give us that blueprint so that we can then say we can have trade and cooperation with Europe but that doesn’t mean we have to be in the European Union.’
“I think Brexit Britain is going to be a global trailblazer. One thing I’ve learned as an MEP here just confirmed it to me – this place is set up, it’s all by design.”
Longworth insisted Brexit will be a “beacon of light” for other EU member states
He added: “The real power here is with people who do backroom deals, who are unelected, who are unaccountable. I don’t think that’s a very positive future for Europe.
“I think in the future you’re going to see eurosceptic feelings rising all across the continent.”
Daniel Hannan, a former Conservative MEP who spent more than 20 years in Brussels, said part of the reason he forecast the EU project will ultimately come to an end is Brussels’ failure to learn from the Brexit lesson.
Mr Hannan said: “The EU could have responded to Brexit by trying to become more flexible.
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Richard Tice suggested “money will tell” if the EU survives Brexit
Von der Leyen joined Sassoli and EU Council chief Charles Michel in expressing their “deep regret” over Brexit in a heartfelt letter
“They could have looked at whether they were doing too much, whether they were too remote, whether they could return some power to the member states.
“Who can say if they had offered Britain some power back, if they had offered David Cameron some recovery of jurisdiction, Brexit wouldn’t have happened. But that didn’t happen. There was no self-analysis, no willingness to accept any fault at all.
“On the contrary, the Eurocrats responded to Brexit by saying, ‘great, the Brits are gone. Now we can push ahead with the European Army and the European tax system and all the rest of it.’
“If they insist on pursuing that route, they make the withdrawal of other countries almost certain.”
As Britain prepared to depart from the EU on Friday, EP President David Sassoli admitted he could not exclude the possibility of an EU Army being formed in the near future to defend the remaining members from security threats.
David Sassoli picture hugging pro-Remain Labour MP Richard Corbett at the last plenary British MEPs attended
UK’s departure without a deal at the end of the transition could cost the EU several hundred jobs
Former British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) director-general John Longworth, who quit the BCC to openly campaign for Brexit and was elected in the EP as a Brexit Party MEP, agreed Brussels appears not to have learned from the results of the 2016 EU referendum in.
Mr Longworth said: “I think we will be a beacon of light for other European countries.
“And it may be that the EU reforms itself to some degree but at the moment it’s heading in the wrong direction.
“It seems to have no desire to do anything other than what it is doing which means it will become a very poor economy within the world scene.”
Brexit Party chairman Richard Tice, himself a former MEP, suggested the future of the European project could partially depend on how Brussels will seek to compensate for the loss of Britain’s budget contributions.
Mr Tice warned unemployment rates, as well as economic pressure faced in eurozone member states, will deeply affect whether the EU remains a viable project.
He said: “It’s just dawning on the rest of the EU27 that the UK economy is as big as all of the 19 smallest economies in the EU27. That is the size and the scale of us leaving.
“There is growing anxiety about the federalist superstate direction the EU is taking among other countries such as Poland, particularly some of the most recent arrivals from Eastern Europe who recognise the loss of sovereignty, the loss of control, the loss of independence. Who knows?
“At the end of the day, I think the money will tell. Not having our money, the eurozone struggling not growing, high unemployment – these things ultimately will weigh on the ballot box in many countries.”
Forecasts of the dire future of the EU bloc have exponentially increased since the Brexit vote, with some political experts suggesting Brussels could find it increasingly hard to address all the issues behind festering dissatisfactions among member states.
Speaking to Express.co.uk in 2018, Dutch academic Hans Vollaard said: “What I expect is that many other actors, whether it’s parties, governments, member states, are rather willing to stay in the European Union but are nevertheless very much dissatisfied about the EU.
“There are limited possibilities to fix the EU to such an extent the dissatisfaction will become less. If the Southern Europeans get what they want, meaning effective measures to address the migration problems which are key issues in Slovenia, Italy and Greece, that will require much more solidarity from the north of Europe and the north of Europe is less willing to do so.
“Effective ways to address this dissatisfaction are not available for the most dissatisfied voices.”