The EU Referendum: Obama speaks

When Barack Obama made his recent visit to the UK, he did all the usual things. There was a cute photo opportunity with the Royal Family, he played some golf in Hertfordshire, and glad-handed David Cameron for the benefit of the cameras. There was also some talk of our ‘special relationship.’ This is something that has never really been clarified, since it was first mentioned by George Bush and Tony Blair, who was then keen to support the war in Iraq.

President Obama then decided to give an ‘exclusive’ TV interview to a reporter. What followed seemed much more like a scripted conversation, allowing the US President to say what was on his mind. And what was on his mind was the forthcoming EU referendum, and the scant chance that the British people might actually vote to leave this failed experiment. He set about telling us, in a forthright manner, that a vote to leave was not acceptable to the USA. We would find ourselves excluded from trade deals, he told us, and America would continue to trade with the EU whilst making sure to leave Britain out in the cold, as punishment for doing what he didn’t agree with.

Personally, I don’t think he could care less. I doubt that anyone in the US cares whether or not we leave the EU, from a farmer in Wisconsin, to the Commander in Chief. I would hazard a guess that many Americans don’t even know what the EU is. Even in the UK, where the issue is supposedly ‘crucial’, many people cannot name more than a few other member states, and understand little of its setup and organisation. And Obama is leaving the presidency anyway, handing over to Ms Clinton, so why should he give a fig? Maybe they have offered him a lucrative job, but I very much doubt that. Perhaps he fears for the ending of the much-vaunted ‘special relationship’? I doubt that too.

He was probably just doing Cameron a favour. Maybe repaying some similar service, or an old debt from the times we have supported his country’s antics around the world. Who knows? He gave the interview, frightened the pants off of many waverers, and said pretty much what Cameron hoped he would say. The truth is, Cameron doesn’t want to be the Prime Minister at the helm if Britain leaves the EU. Just in case…Add to that the fact that he is representing the European business interests of so many pals and cronies, and it was understandable that he felt nervous enough to ask Mr President to step in on his side.

But just what was Mr Obama thinking? Is it really acceptable to tell the citizens of another country how to vote, then throw in a few veiled threats about what will happen if they don’t do as he says? I can only imagine the reaction of voters in the US, if a European leader like Cameron popped over there, had his photo taken with Michelle and the girls, played some golf at Augusta, then told them just who they should vote for in November. He might even be brave enough to throw in some vague threats about what might happen if they didn’t do as he asked, but I doubt it.

The world had high hopes for the first black president of the US, back in 2008.
I just have three words for him, in 2016. Shame on you.

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9 comments

  1. emmakwall

    I agree, I think Dave just asked him to say something for his campaign HOWEVER it really wound me up hearing him ‘threaten us’ and if anything would make to vote to leave. I really disliked Obama when I saw that! Whether or not it was a favour for Dave, stay OUT of our politics and if we’re “such good friends” you’d support us whatever decision we made.

    xxx

    Like

  2. 2581john

    Valid comment Pete. This entire referendum has been a real education about how Cameron works. Rather than be a confident leader for this nation regardless of the outcome, he has sought to bully, intimidate, and terrify his people. This morning, he delivered the threat of war. Preventable only by continued membership in the EU apparently. In 2014 British police discovered over 30,000 EU citizens who were living in the UK while being wanted for serious crimes in their own countries. To help Cameron with his immigration target deficit, the College of Policing gave all officers refresher training in the hope that police could catch and presumably deport, even more. Maybe, he forgot to ask Mr Obama to mention that bit! Obama has been an ineffective President at best and should accept some responsibility for creating a US that looks to Trump for its future instead of meddling in a UK referendum. Just a thought!

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    • beetleypete

      All very true mate. They obviously thought that the country might just vote to come out, and threw everything at the scare tactics to keep us in. The facts got glossed over of course, and the machinations behind the scenes can only be imagined.
      As for Obama, he and other presidents have had the UK in their pocket for so long, they get miffed when they think we might do something they don’t like, and come over to slap our legs.
      Cheers, Pete.

      Like

  3. Eddy Winko

    I’d hazard a guess that the comment relates to the TTIP agreement, probably the only reason Obama was in the EU in the first place. The UK supports the idea which is a good enough reason the keep them in the EU. Personally the one reason I’d vote for the UK to leave the EU is so that it couldn’t be part of the TTIP, but thankfully the French (farmers) look like they have the power to scupper the whole deal so I’m a happy man and I don’t have the vote.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. democratizemoney

    Initially I was going to comment that I, one American, not only know what the EU is, but also have an opinion about whether or not the UK should stay in or get out. I care. However, it is none of my business so I shan’t share that opinion. Indeed, I am not prone to share it privately either. I live in an experiment. Phase one if that experiment was a country of sorts under the Articles of Confederation. That had a few glitches that needed fixing so a convention was called to amend the Articles and instead came up with a whole new plan. Does that suggest anything to you?
    Then I was going to comment on Obama telling citizens of the UK how to vote and the threats you cite. However, I was going to ask to have as many of your and other EU dignitaries come over here and support Donald Trump by telling American Citizens to vote for him or else. Please send them by the thousands. But then I figured we have voters too stupid to understand that they really should not vote for him and might actually be swayed. After all, they have put him in the presumptive Republican nomination without the kind of help I would be asking for. Reverse psychology may not work with the stupid who vote for him because they think he is actually saying something that makes sense.
    So, my final thoughts on commenting on this entry, Pete, is to say Thank you for posting it.
    Theo

    Liked by 1 person

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