Cameron: Brits Will Vote on EU Exit

But he'll have to win reelection in 2015 first

By Liam Carnahan,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 23, 2013 7:18 AM CST

(Newser) – British PM David Cameron made an impassioned case today for his country to stick with the European Union, but said it's time for Britons "to have their say" on the matter, reports the New York Times. He promised an "in-or-out" referendum as early as 2017—provided, of course, he wins reelection in 2015. The Conservative Party leader acknowledged that many Brits "feel that the EU is heading in a direction they never signed up to," citing increased regulation by the European Commission as particularly problematic.

The Times notes that Cameron's move could be an attempt to pick up votes in the next election, but it is reverberating throughout the globe: "Germany, and I personally, want Britain to be an important part" of the EU, said Angela Merkel, while noting that a "fair compromise" must be found. Meanwhile, the BBC notes that Germany's Bild is running a headline that asks, "Is Britain destroying the EU?" In Washington, the Obama administration has been open about its desire to see the UK remain part of the EU. Cameron noted that an exit from the Union would be a "one-way ticket."

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron makes a speech on having a referendum on staying in the European Union in London, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013.   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
British PM David Cameron walks past a map of Europe after a speech on whether his nation will stay in the European Union in London, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013.   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron answers a journalist's question after a speech on staying in the European Union, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013.   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron makes a speech on having a referendum on staying in the European Union in London, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013.   (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
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