They're here not just to sell to 70 million Brits but to be part of the huge EU that Britain might conceivably leave. CORNISH: There's this massive campaign - right? - pushing to leave the EU. Who's in it? SIEGEL: Well, there are nationalists. The UK Independence Party is very much in favor of leaving. Many members of the Conservative Party have been Euroskeptics, as they say, ever since the 1970s when Britain first joined what was then called the Common Market. And there are ordinary folks who just think that Britain is giving away too much of its sovereignty to this Brussels-based super-national organization. Yesterday I went to a stronghold of the leave campaign to hear what some of its complaints are.

And that's what this is all about. It's our ability as a sovereign nation to manage our own destiny as opposed to being run from a clique in Brussels. SIEGEL: The idea that Britain has gotten caught up in something undemocratic, something fiber optics to its people's needs and demands is central to the leave campaign. 

I was at the formidable border that has long kept England separate from Europe, the English Channel. On a gray day at the beach Dumpton Gap in the coastal town of Broadstairs, the waves were choppy, and Martin Taylor-Smith, British soldier turned high tech executive turned activist for the leave campaign, was pointing to the unseen land 20 miles off in the distance. MARTIN TAYLOR-SMITH: Well, if it was a little bit brighter today, you would be able to see the coast of France and Belgium.

A long may there be the water between the two of us (laughter). SIEGEL: This is the cherished barrier between England and the continent, right? TAYLOR-SMITH: Absolutely right. The Normans were the last ones to successfully come over this a little while backing anyway - 1066.

 I've got more. Let me say that we're expecting more leaflets in tomorrow. I promise I'll contact you as soon as they come in - but appreciate all the efforts - well done. SIEGEL: As a young man in the 1970s, Taylor-Smith says he was pro-Europe. TAYLOR-SMITH: When I was 18 or so, I was part of a campaign to get us in, as was Margaret Thatcher. SIEGEL: But over the years, his enthusiasm waned as the free trading area evolved into a stronger European Union. TAYLOR-SMITH: And that's not what we joined.

 

It's where Charles Dickens spent his summers. Nowadays it is festooned with leave signs. Martin Taylor-Smith drove me around town and told me about the leave campaign that he's coordinating in this part of the county of Kent. At least he tried to tell me when he wasn't interrupted by phone calls. TAYLOR-SMITH: Sorry. Excuse me. Hello. SIEGEL: Volunteers in need of more campaign brochures.