Michael Gove's full Brexit speech on Today programme

Posted On: 
19th April 2016

Justice Secretary Michael Gove laid out his case for Brexit on BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

"I want us to vote to leave the EU before it’s too late because that’s the safer choice for Britain. If we vote to stay we are not settling for a secure status quo, we are voting to be hostages locked in the back of the car driven head long towards deeper EU integration. Brussels has already set out some of its plans for the next great transfer of powers to the EU in what’s called the five presidents report. The EU is clear; it wants more power over our taxes and our banks.

"Sadly, we’ve surrendered our veto on these moves and what’s worse, if we try to object the European Court of Justice can overrule us. The court has been strengthened recently, through the new charter of fundamental rights. It can now control how we apply asylum rules, how our intelligence services monitor suspected terrorists, and even who we can deport. And just as we’re losing all this power we are also on the hook to pay more money to the EU, as new countries join the union. But if we were to leave, we can take back control.

"We can take back the £350m that we give to the EU every week. We can then spend more on our priorities, like the NHS. We can take back control of our economy. The EU has failed to secure trade deals with the huge economies of India, China and America. Outside the EU, we can cut those deals. Outside the EU, we’d still benefit from the free trade zone which currently stretches from Iceland to the Russian border, but we wouldn’t have all the EU regulations which cost our economy £600m every week.

"We can take back control of our borders. Inside the EU we have to accept that anyone with an EU passport, even if they have a criminal record, can breeze into Britain. That freedom will be extended to people from countries in the pipeline to join the EU; Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey.

"Outside the EU, we could have a points-based system like Australia. We could welcome talented people from across the world, but block those whose presence here isn’t in our interests.

"Britain is a great country, it’s the world’s fifth largest economy with the world’s best Armed Forces, best health service and best broadcaster. We’re first in the world for soft power, thanks to our language, culture and creativity. And yet the In camp try to suggest that we’re too small and too weak, and our people are too hapless and feckless to succeed without Jean-Claude Juncker looking after us. That’s a deeply pessimistic and negative vision. Britain could do better, we are a uniquely inventive nation and our greatest invention is representative democracy: the principle that the people who run our country should be chosen by us and can be kicked out by us.

"That’s why it’s time to take back control."