Josh Larwood voted Leave two years ago. He had time to think again and has now changed his mind. No doubt in his mind: he wants a People’s Vote.
Imagine voting in a general election. You go into the ballot box, but this time there are only two options. The question reads “Do you want to change the governing party?”
You make your mark next to ‘Yes’ and stroll out of the ballot box happy with your decision.
At no point were you asked which party you would like to be in power. No one was. There are parties A, B, C, D and E to pick from and the current government hasn’t got a clue what people voted for, so they guess.
A general election would never be run this way, so why is it that the Brexit referendum was? No one was asked how they wanted to leave. Or at what cost. The government, at best, are guessing.
It explains why the Tories can’t agree with themselves, everyone’s guess is different, and why there are so many versions of Brexit, with the supporters of each claiming they represent ‘the will of the people’. Options include chequers, no deal, Canada+++, Norway style and full unicornist.
Whereas there’s only one version of Remain. Categorically and unequivocally, the support for Remain is far greater than the support for any individual version of Brexit.
Will of the people.
Speaking of the will of the people... It’s not, is it?
For a referendum to be binding, a majority for change needs to be well in excess of 52%. So, either it is binding, in which case the result wasn’t high enough for Leave to enact the change, or it is advisory.
Furthermore, citizens from a number of EU countries that may have lived here for decades leading up to the vote, but didn’t seek British citizenship as they had EU citizenship (ergo saw no need for it, until now) were denied a vote. These are the people, our neighbours, our friends, who will likely be the most affected. Yet, they had no voice...
How about the thousands of British citizens living abroad who were also denied a vote? Or the 16 and 17-year olds (who are ironically now old enough to vote) who will be living with the fallout from a decision made by their parents and grandparents?
The will of the people is actually the will of 37% of the people in June 2016.
And it’s been hijacked.
2017 General election result.
Let’s address this myth too. The general election result in 2017 does not represent a mandate for Brexit in any way.
Both main parties stood on a promise to enact Brexit. It’s the largest single issue in politics, yes, but IT IS STILL A SINGLE ISSUE.
It wasn’t a re-run of the Brexit referendum; it was to decide who runs the country. Any party standing on a manifesto promising to stop Brexit is not going to win everyone’s vote if the rest of the manifesto is terrible.
There’s much more to play for in a general election. Otherwise, the current government should assume nothing else from their manifesto is important or has any support from the public.
They can’t have it both ways.
Vote Leave broke the electoral law, according to the Electoral Commission.
You were lied to; we were all lied to. We were victims. But normally, if you are lied to, you have the right to change your mind.
If you buy something, but later find out it’s not what’s advertised on the box, you can take it back.
“But the Remain campaign lied too…” Two wrongs don’t make a right. In fact, it’s even more justification that the campaign was illegitimate!
Shift in opinions.
Polls are consistently saying the UK is #RemainerNow. The lead that Remain has over Leave has been put as high as 1.9 million very recently, higher than the 1.3 million lead the Leave vote achieved in 2016.
This is fuelled by many more voters switching from Leave to Remain than vice versa. The traffic is almost entirely one way (with the exception of Tory party faithful falling in with the party line).
Simple. A People’s Vote. Do we want whatever the government has agreed, no deal or to Remain? Those are the three options on the table.
Don’t let anyone tell you we can’t undo this mess. Article 50 can be cancelled, as said by the author of Article 50 himself.
The EU won’t stop us cancelling the whole thing. They’ve said it on many occasions: Brexit is regrettable and the door is still wide open.
Despite the Brexiteers’ propaganda, the EU is not some horrible dictatorship with a grudge against Britain.
It’s time we look again at this madness and decide whether it’s what we really want.
After voting Leave in 2016, I am now a committed #RemainerNow pushing for a People’s Vote on the final deal for Brexit. Join me!🔷
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(This piece was originally published on The Reflective.)