Brexit negotiations continue amid Russia investigation


Michael Eng

The United Kingdom is set to leave the European Union on March 29, 2019. The referendum occurred on June 23, 2016.

by Meena Gudapati and Srinath Somasundaram

Over a year after the British population voted to secede from the European Union (EU), the government has yet to complete the scandal-riddled journey of completely going through with Brexit.

English teacher John Docherty, who previously lived in Ipswich, a town in Suffolk, United Kingdom (UK), believes that Brexit will be a mistake.

“[It] diminished the role of Great Britain in a broader, global economy,” he said. “I have relatives and friends in Europe that are all questioning, ‘what’s going to happen to us, do we still have rights to stay?’”

The UK is currently investigating the possibility of Russia having influenced the Brexit vote through social media after the alleged Russian influence in the 2016 American presidential election was brought to light.

“I don’t think it’s just a group of people who got together and said, ‘we want to get out of Europe,’” Docherty said. “I think there was another factor in play here. The Russian influence on the global scale is pretty sweeping.”

British officials are working with Facebook and Twitter in an investigation of the possible Russian involvement while also trying to tackle the larger problems that accompany the large role of social media in elections in the 21st century.  

The official exit is scheduled to occur on March 29, 2019, exactly two years after British prime minister Theresa May activated Article 50 of the European Union, which describes the way in which a country should leave the union.

“The initial impact was actually in the currency, which was one of the largest single day moves in the British pound in the last 40 years,” Kris James Mitchener, an economics professor at Santa Clara University, said. “The lasting impact hasn’t been as much as people were fully predicting in part because Brexit has yet to be fully decided.”

The three main topics that must be addressed before the exit are the UK’s debts to the EU, citizens of the EU living in the UK and vice versa and trade relations between the UK and the EU.

This piece was originally published in the pages of the Winged Post on November 16, 2017.