If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact

Will (or indeed should) the UK ever rejoin the EU?

  • 16-10-2021 7:46pm
    Registered Users Posts: 8,925 ✭✭✭

    At the moment Brexit is still in it's infancy, but the problems and realities of it grew up quickly,

    So as the title asks, in light of the ever increasing lists of mess after mess after mess and the realities of Brexit, the damage it is causing to the UK, will reality bite (perhaps 20/30/40 years later?), and should the UK at some point in the future (obviously in need of leaders more in tune with said reality who admit defeat) apply for EU membership?




  • Registered Users Posts: 19,256 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    It might be a case that they might try to apply but might not be admitted.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,331 ✭✭✭landofthetree

    No insults.

    Post edited by ancapailldorcha on

  • Registered Users Posts: 81,988 ✭✭✭✭Atlantic Dawn

    Having to admit defeat and additionally having to surrender the 'mighty'' Sterling for the Euro would be humiliating, mind you having to q for petrol like some third world county is also humiliating. I couldn't see it happen within the next 20 years.

  • Moderators, Politics Moderators Posts: 39,362 Mod ✭✭✭✭Seth Brundle

    It will be another generation before the UK is ready to properly consider rejoining. However, there is a lot of issues at home that the UK need to resolve beforehand including a more representative form of democracy.

    They need to have a proper mature fact-based discussion at home as to what happened previously that led to them leaving and why they want back into the union.

    I think they also need a better understanding of what they get from their membership rather than the nonsense and lies spouted over the last four decades

    They really do need to take a long hard look at how their media shape political views simply to suit the agendas of the owners of those media outlets.

    When they rejoin, they need to show full involvement including adopting the Euro. I think a five year probationary period should be set in place (as it should be with other potential new members).

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,331 ✭✭✭landofthetree

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 10,969 ✭✭✭✭alchemist33

    As Seth said above, it'll take a generation for the Brexiteers' voices to diminish and maybe then they will attempt to rejoin. But by then I expect the UK as we know it won't exist anyway and Scotland will already be in the EU.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,331 ✭✭✭landofthetree

    In another generation the EU will be a lot different. Greater ever union will be further down the road. Can't see the Brits wanting to join it.

    As Guy Verhofstadt said " To survive in the long-term, the Eurozone will need a proper banking union and a fiscal union."

  • Registered Users Posts: 81,988 ✭✭✭✭Atlantic Dawn

    Greece should never have been allowed join the EU in the first place.

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 19,537 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    Whatever about the EU, they should never have been allowed to join the Euro. They fiddled the books to qualify.

  • Registered Users Posts: 435 ✭✭GoogleBot

    UK will never join EU. Sovereignty more important than communal farming.

  • Advertisement
  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 19,537 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    Would the UK want to re-join the EU? I would not think so for a few reasons. Wil he UK be a single entity - or will it break up? An independent Scotland probably would, but England - no.

    Would the EU accept them back? Well, de Gaulle did not want them - vetoed them twice.

    So on balance - No they will not be back.

  • Registered Users Posts: 68,496 ✭✭✭✭L1011

    Extending on above - it won't be the UK deciding to rejoin, because it won't exist.

    Within a decade Scotland will be gone and (at least on its way) back in and NI will be... somewhat in in some way; be it some variation of the Protocol or reunification or any stage in between.

    England and Wales, possibly still trying to call itself "the UK" would need a political revolution to go back in; but if FPTP can somehow be killed that would be the start of it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 716 ✭✭✭techman1

    In a simple answer, No they won't rejoin even if Labour get back in.

    Ireland will now be facing big questions regarding the EU itself, will Ireland have to join the EU army because that's the direction things are going, that's what macron wants increased militarization and an EU with proper power.

    At the moment Poland is defying the European court of justice saying it has no jurisdiction over the polish supreme court. The EU has no real power here because it cannot send around the EU police force or army to enforce its edicts . That's why macron wants an eu army

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,135 ✭✭✭screamer

    The European Union will fail eventually or rather, it will diminish back to its original purpose a trading agreement. We’ll all be better off out of it. The EU needs to change or fail altogether.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 18,279 CMod ✭✭✭✭Nody

    Sure; and other countries will abandon EU soon(tm); any day now... You can keep dreaming about the "good old days" but EU is not going back from where it's today dragging populist politicians in countries such as Hungary and Poland with it because no matter what it's politicians think their voters prefer EU and UK is making a great example of why for them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,568 ✭✭✭20silkcut

    De Gaulle was spot on all along. Britain should never have joined. Trouble is we would never have joined either. Maybe we would be joined in some form at this stage. Britain would be a lot better off now if it had gone down the Norway route. It would have deprived the eurosceptics of oxygen over the last 30 years and they’d probably never have gained the traction they did. Again to reiterate the point De Gaulle was right. He saw what it was like to be in a sort of union/humiliation with Britain during the war. Of course we ourselves here in Ireland know full well what it’s like to be in a union with Britain as well. Britain can’t countenance any Union of equals.

    But trading difficulties with Britain does create problems for us they being our nearest neighbours there is no getting away from that reality that is why we are so excercised by brexit

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,272 ✭✭✭fash

    When was it ever a "trading agreement" - the very first treaty said it was a political project - furthermore, how could it possibly be a single market without common rules enforced by a common court and freedom of movement of goods, services & people?

    And why would Ireland ever want to go back to a place where the UK starves Ireland, deprives it of medicines, blocks trade,wages economic & propaganda wars - to force Ireland to submit to the will of a vicious corrupt British elite?

    No thank you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,272 ✭✭✭fash

    Lucky for Ireland that the UK joined as Ireland could never have become economically independent otherwise.

    UK could never have been a Norway - which must follow EU rules with relatively little input: UK wanted, wants & believes itself entitled to dominate others.

    Ireland's problems with brexit primarily come down to Northern Ireland. Long term that's the UK's problem also: if they create an unstable situation there it is unsustainable for them which means a United Ireland. The only thing preventing a United Ireland is an operable NI protocol.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    I would welcome Scotland back in and NI as part of a UI. England, no I wouldn’t want them back in they are still of the mighty Britain mindset, many still think in WW2 battle terms and a belief that they are just better than everyone else.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    So the UK has fallen so low that favourable comparisons to Greece are acceptable???

    I've dropped my monocle

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 920 ✭✭✭ujjjjjjjjj

    Impossible to say now whether Brexit will benefit the UK or not, it is simply far too early to make any assessment. Covid of course has muddied the waters with every problem in the UK being used as a middle class hissy fit and by the Pro Remain sections of the media to say ' I told you so'. It will be a generation before any of us can look back and make an honest assessment. Regardless of the motives for leaving and the rights and the wrongs of it, leaving a trading bloc like the EU and untangling from it was always (and it would be the same for any country) going to cause a period of substantial adjustment.

    Impossible for the Irish to have a rational discussion on it as we have so firmly staked our claim to being good little Europeans and blowing smoke about how good the EU is and awful the Brits are and it is a little tedious.

    Like most things the reality is much more nuanced. Ireland and many other member States have big decisions ahead about where the European Project goes in terms of ever reducing national sovereignty and big decisions like an EU army etc. Clear as day that the power lies with Germany with French support and there is a clear push to increasing EU power. If that is what people want fine but rational and logical discussions need to take place. A recent simple example is the massive u-turn on our tax policy, personally I think it is morally the right thing to do but anyone under any illusions that it was an Irish decision is deluded, clear and simple messaging from the EU, Macron etc made it absolutely clear that Ireland had no room to manoeuvre on this one and we did what we were told despite it being directly against a core Irish sovereign policy.

    Ireland isn't in a place to have these discussions now as all we seem concerned about is watching and hoping that Brexit turns into a sh*t show so we can be proved right. We have to move on.

    Personally I hope the UK prospers and in time as the middle class hissy fit recedes they need to move on. I have doubts as to increasing EU powers as ultimately history teaches us that policy will be driven largely by German needs with the French tagging along.

    I read very little actual of any sense in any sections in the Irish media or on message boards of this nature that is actually asking wider questions about where we go with the EU but plenty of tedious and boring 'Brexit disaster' commentary making out that the UK is falling apart at the seams due to all the morons who voted for Brexit. This has been going on since 2016 and after 5 years you might think we could move the discourse on a bit.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,364 ✭✭✭micosoft

    Does repeating that lie make you feel better? I mean, at this stage this has been done to death so I can't imagine you don't know the truth of the matter that the EU was never created as a trading agreement even before the inception of the European Coal and Steel Community? So why post it? Plainly the EU has radically changed and continues to change to this day. But you know all this and instead repeat debunked talking points from the far right.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,163 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    Eventually, yes. Either that or they'll negotiate ever closer alignment so as to make the difference meaningless. This is years, if not decades away. Brexit needs to fail on its own terms and we can see that happening now.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 134 ✭✭d4v1d

    Personally I dread the thought of a United Ireland. As a 26 county country we are doing pretty damn well for ourselves overall and introducing the pile of sh**e that is NI politics (that being generous) into the new Republic would be a complete mess.

    There is an alternative that no-one seems to be speaking about. Should Scotland secede I think NI and Ireland would be served much better if NI were to form part of a United Scotland. The traditional ties between GB and NI have always been stronger with the Scots than the English and this potential marriage of nations may satisfy nationalist and unionist both in that neither Dublin or London would be involved. If the United Scotland is accepted into the EU then border issues on Ireland cease to be a concern and we can finally bury the current idea of UI.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,364 ✭✭✭micosoft

    To answer the question, the UK will never rejoin because the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland as currently constructed will not exist given the direction of travel of NI & Scotland.

    Secondly, it's not a binary choice. There are many levels before full membership. The likely outcome will be an EFTA like membership for England & Wales. i.e. follow all the rules but get none of the input rights. It will take decades for this final defeat of the British Empire to filter through to it's population i.e. the Brexiteers die off, and a revised education system and genuinely free press emerge along with a functioning democracy replacing the current failed system. This would be prerequisite before the EU could consider having a political relationship with England and Wales.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 38,163 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha

    The union is busting at the seams. Sure, Johnson can always just refuse independence referenda but that's not really sustainable in the long run, especially in Northern Ireland. It's also going to be a serious embarrassment for them on the world stage about half of the UK's landmass wants to break away because of their leader's ambitions.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith

  • Registered Users Posts: 49 BuckoA51

    I think whatever's left of it might re-join one day, but before the EU would even have them back they'd need an overhaul. A switch to a decent democratic voting system full PR would be great but those in power in the UK have resisted that for generations.

    I'm just really grateful to be here now, way better. At this point it's starting to affect those middle class older voters who were so keen on it in the first place (and, ironically, the least vulnerable to having their jobs/businesses turned upside down as a result). As gaps appear on the supermarket shelves and fuel becomes more scarce, but you must never underestimate the British electorate's ability to blame anyone but themselves for the consequences.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,272 ✭✭✭fash

    It's "impossible to say" in the same way as it is "impossible to say" if gravity works or if evolution is a thing. The basic rules of economics say that brexit can only be a failure.

    The tax thing was an OECD decision - 193 countries for it - Ireland against. Is France so powerful now it controls all those countries? If so, it's a good thing we are in the EU so that they can't trample us the way the British have tried and continue to try.

    Considering the UK is back again trying to dismantle the Irish sea border- which will allow Ireland to be flooded with the UK's excess BSE infected beef they can no longer sell abroad, the sewage soaked sea food they similarly cannot & the various lowest common denominator pesticide-soaked & GMO food - you'll have to forgive Irish people for giving a ****.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,122 ✭✭✭mick087

    The UK will never give up sterling the UK will never accept the Schengen Area.

    Unless the EU it self’s changes then IMO I don’t see the UK will ever re-join the EU in its current format.

    UK elected governments come and go EU Presidents come and go people’s opinions change much can happen in 10 years.

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 920 ✭✭✭ujjjjjjjjj

    Your post is exactly the type of posting I am talking about.

    I studied Economics and don't remember a basic rule that states that an independent country in charge of its own borders and trade agreements can't be economically stable and successful. You are simply assuming that by leaving a trading bloc a country will long term suffer economically but that assumes it stands still and does nothing else.

    If you don't believe EU pressure, soundings and specifically French influence (Macron was in Dublin shortly before the u-turn) had nothing to do with Pascal's sudden change of tune fine but I think you being naive as to the influence senior EU figures have over domestic Irish policy.

    Of course the UK are trying to dismantle the Irish Sea Border. Would you like a border around Cork for example ? I am fully aware Brexit has caused massive issues with the North but the defacto reality of the UK leaving the EU was having a border between the North and the South the only practical solution yet it was deemed politically impossible in Ireland so we ended up with a solution that can never work. The British and Boris signed up to it as Boris saw little choice to batter Brexit through and yes they are at fault for that and it is an unpleasant side effect of the whole Brexit process but a border in some shape or form between the UK and the EU is (and this means the North too) is the only long term solution bar of course a United Ireland. Anything else is a fudge and will continue to cause problems.

    As for your comments on BSE and sewage laden seafood I am not too sure where to go with those. BSE is over in the UK with the UK due next year to apply for and restore the lowest possible risk level for BSE. Was it a mess yes but hardly the only food scandal in Europe. The UK is not selling BSE infected beef. As for the seafood sewage comments again no idea where to start on that and considering Ireland is in never ending trouble with the EU over sewage discharge into our seas and rivers very much a case of get our own house in order before critical commentary on other countries.

    In time will Brexit prove to be an unmitigated mess for the UK, quite possibly. Might another narrative play out, quite possibly.

    I know Brexit bashing is fun but maybe we could look past it now as it has happened.

    To get back to the post topic I dont think the UK will rejoin the EU or even consider it for at least a generation and much will depend on exactly what happens in the EU and how the European Project plays out in the next 20-30 years.