Whilst the Prime Minister, Theresa May, has not made things easy for herself, she has been dealt an unplayable hand, and it would have been just as bad, perhaps even worse, had she secured a workable majority in the 2017 general election. The current saviour of a proper Brexit are the DUP; more Conservative MPs may have taken the opposite view. In a sense, I have some sympathy for her predicament, though the lack of leadership and competence all round is likely to spell the end of her tenure sooner rather than later.
Of the suggested political solutions made by various parties, their tenor determined solely on whether they wish to remain or leave, none address the problem, which is:
The people made a firm decision to leave the EU, yet also populated the House of Commons with people who were determined to oppose that decision. The problem, although exacerbated by the Prime Minister, would remain, whoever were to take over the Conservative party leadership or the Prime Ministership.
The fact that MPs overwhelmingly voted for the referendum and to invoke Article 50, as well as passing the repeal bill, was illusory. It was a strategic move by people who would bide their time for a later opportunity to frustrate the referendum decision within a technically complicated parliamentary process that allows them to attribute all the blame to another party, currently Theresa May.
If the Tories remove Mrs May and install Boris Johnson or anyone else as Prime Minister, a Brexit cabinet will be united, but the votes in the house for a clean Brexit still wouldn’t be there.
If there is another referendum, it is highly likely that Leave would win with a greater majority, the rationale being that, when the referendum was won, Leave stopped campaigning but Remain continued with 80% of the airwaves and the press behind them. However, another referendum means another campaign, together with the enforcement of broadcasting impartiality. In the original referendum, those who voted to leave didn’t like the EU, its detachment, its intransigence or its undemocratic constitution. To that end, and as a Brexiteer, I give hearty congratulations to the EU, throughout the ‘negotiations’, in reinforcing the stereotype of a dictatorial classroom bully with exemplary exactitude.
If there is a general election, somebody will win most seats, but the overall make-up of the Commons in term of the anti-Brexit majority will remain. People tend to vote for parties and will return to form, or abstain, depending on how angry they are. There is no third option now that UKIP has left the field of play to court the anti-Muslim and anti-foreigner ‘Tommy Robinson’. Hardly a day now passes without a senior and longstanding UKIP member walking away. There is no time, even if the next general election were to be as late as 2022, for a new party to build the infrastructure and membership to contest a general election (though it is perfectly possible for European elections, should Article 50 be delayed, because of the voting mechanism).
This is a conundrum within which there appears to be no route to Brexit. The above options, and all others, work extremely well for remaining in the EU, but that’s not the mandate.
The answer is a coalition of independents.
Well, I say the answer, it may not be, but it is a feasible, practical and innovative solution, that could not only change the constitution of the House of Commons but also change the face of the political landscape forever. It would certainly cause a stir.
The impasse is inbuilt, with a Parliament that wants to remain, and an electorate that wants to leave. There is no certainty, that even if the Conservatives with a new leader, won a significant majority, those new MPs would be any more favourable to Brexit than the current crop.
The awful thought occurs, that with a big majority the Prime Minister may well have got her terrible deal passed.
If Parliament opposes the people, to achieve resolution one of them must change. Changing the referendum result is the purpose of the second referendum campaign. Nobody has considered a practical and feasible way of changing the other, until now.
I’m currently in the process of building the COI website, but there is much to do. We need supporters and helpers and we musts get the message out that there is an alternative. If you would like to help, then please let me know.
In part 2, I’ll explain more about how this would work in practice.
Read part 2 here.