Why Americans should be paying closer attention to Brexit

brexit u.s. (Large)
Two very big reasons you should care about Brexit: the economy and Trump

At the start of 2019, I spent five weeks exploring the far reaches of Africa, Asia, and Australia, meeting as many locals along the way as possible.

No matter what country I was in, everyone wanted to pick my brain about the same topic: President Donald Trump.

I wasn’t surprised foreigners found our celebrity president as interesting as we do, but I was surprised with how much the rest of the world knew about American politics.

In Cape Town, I was asked about members of the U.S. Cabinet; in Singapore, I had discussions about Republicans’ chances of taking back the House in 2020; in Sydney, I was schooled on American history.

Honestly, how many Americans can name our Secretary of State or first president post-Reconstruction?

I was also humbled about how little I realized I knew about world politics. This American investigative/political reporter knew less about Brexit than the random bloke I met at the bar in Christchurch, N.Z.

It prompted me to learn what I could about Brexit. I learned it could be a big enough implosion that Europe’s economic shrapnel would threaten to shatter America’s decadelong economic prosperity.

And as goes America’s economy, so goes Trump’s biggest 2020 campaign asset.

In short:

— British citizens voted to leave the EU by a 52-48 percent margin in 2016, with EU regulations and immigration among the biggest issues.

— Unable to strike a satisfactory compromise between Britain’s House of Commons and the European Union after three years, Prime Minister Theresa May announced her resignation Friday, effective when a replacement is named this summer.

— Conservative leader Boris Johnson, a friend of Trump, is the presumed front-runner to succeed May. That seemingly makes a compromise with the EU even less likely, given Johnson’s numerous hard line stances.

The result of all this could be a “no-deal Brexit,” which means Britain would leave the EU later this year with such immediacy that no agreements would be in place, leading to quite a bit of chaos.

Trade would be disrupted, immigration would be a disaster, and everything from driver’s licenses to phone data plans could be invalidated.

That’s just fine with some British conservatives, but effects would be felt beyond Europe, too. A “no-deal Brexit” could shake the world economy so significantly that everyone feels pain.

No matter how great you believe President Trump is for the American economy, there’s little a president can really do to stop the ebb and flow of the world economy.

At some point, America’s prosperity will slow down, and it won’t be good for whomever the U.S. President is at the time.

If that happens to come later this year, even if triggered by a Brexit meltdown, Democrats and Republicans will both feel the financial pain. But only one party is likely to feel it politically as well.

Noah Pransky

Noah Pransky is a multiple award-winning investigative reporter, most recently with the CBS affiliate in Tampa. He’s uncovered major stories such as uncovering backroom deals in the Tampa Bay Rays stadium and other political investigations. Pransky also ran a blog called Shadow of the Stadium, giving readers a deep dive into the details of potential financial deals and other happenings involving the Tampa Bay- area sports business.


  • Jim Donelon

    May 24, 2019 at 4:27 pm

    Noah, I have been following the Brexit situation since the beginning on C-SPAN every Sunday night at 9 p.m. at the House of Commons. It’s some of the best entertainment on T.V.

  • gary

    May 24, 2019 at 7:16 pm

    Why is it that adults are scared of pain? In every life a little rain must fall! Trump is doing exactly what the Brits are doing! Escaping a New World Order! The founders wanted America to have limited relations beyond out boards. But the past 200 years of administrations has done the exact opposite! Trump and a lot of voters understand that braking ties that do not benefit America needs to be done regardless of pain! The Brit’s are clearly smart enough to want the exact same thing! World order be damned!

  • Andrew Nappi

    May 24, 2019 at 7:41 pm

    The reason Americans should pay attention to Brexit is to understand that peaceful divorce from a union that offers no advantage yet takes liberty away is unhealthy.
    Brexit should be the clarion call to the states to begin thinking about an exit from the forced union they have been in since 1865. The states ratified the Constitution only on the grounds that their sovereignty would remain and only those powers they ceded to their creation would be implemented. Now these same states are vassals to a national monolith that has become despotic at home and aggressive abroad. It is time for FLexit, Calexit and many more.

  • Jerry Lane

    May 25, 2019 at 10:04 am

    A media narrative in 2016 was our economy was going to tank under Trump. EU is run by unelected bureaucrats who are enforcing regulations on Britain whose people have no deliberative/legislative say in them. “A “no-deal Brexit” could shake the world economy so significantly that everyone feels pain.” Or maybe it won’t. Too many media predictions have been so wrong.

    • Thomas

      May 25, 2019 at 11:43 am

      Bravo! I seem to remember hearing about some English colonies having a problem with not having parliamentary representation in the UK at one time. Their quest to extricate themselves took over a decade of building sentiment and virtue to fight for Independence!

  • Ron

    May 26, 2019 at 12:21 am

    What a shallow report. Why not talk about the links between Brexit and Russia, the same kind of attack on British voters as perpetrated on American voters in 2016. Or the links between both of these events and the Yellow Vest riots in France? Your look only at potential economic ramifications missed the bigger picture entirely–the destruction of the post-WWII Western Economic Order.

Comments are closed.


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