It’s not too late to be honest about Brexit

by Hugo Dixon | 11.10.2017

Theresa May is struggling to tell the truth. She couldn’t even say how she’d vote if there was another referendum on Brexit in her LBC interview yesterday.

At least Philip Hammond is trying. The chancellor wrote in The Times this morning that “we must be honest about the near-term challenges and complexities”. He went on to tell the Treasury Select Committee this morning that a no-deal Brexit could lead to a “bad-tempered breakdown” of relations with the EU. There was even a theoretical possibility that planes wouldn’t be able to fly to the EU, though he said nobody seriously expected that to happen.

Hammond will no doubt be condemned by Tory hardliners for being miserable. They want politicians to fuel their fantasies of sunlit uplands.

This is the game Boris Johnson has been playing. But you can’t buck reality for ever. Eventually it catches up with you – as indeed it has been catching up with the foreign secretary. His reputation has sunk as people realise he hasn’t been telling the truth.

Dishonesty is also destroying May. Her promise not to call an election. Her pretence that her multiple u-turns – notably on the dementia tax – haven’t been u-turns. Now her inability to say how she’d vote if there was another referendum. All these are eating away at her credibility.

Even worse, dishonesty is destroying our country. We are hurtling towards a disaster based on a pack of lies. There may be a few voters who know what’s in store and are happy to put up with the havoc – or to inflict it on the next generation. But many others have been deceived.

It’s not too late for May, a vicar’s daughter, to start telling the truth about what she thinks is really going on. Treat the voters as adults and, if they are happy to press on regardless, so be it. But if they change their mind when they see what Brexit means, then stop the madness.

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Edited by Luke Lythgoe

7 Responses to “It’s not too late to be honest about Brexit”

  • This is one shambles after another.its not just May its all of them with their arrogance and lies.they need to go for the good of the nation and its people.She won’t say which way she would vote in another referendum,the people are in the dark with them messing with peoples lives so do the right thing and go for heavens sake before the six week deadline demanded by the only industry left,the banks,after they sold our manufacturing base and infrastructure,before they move to Europe.the advertised fire sale on treasure Island has come back to bite the Tories on the bum with inward investment gone when this utter Tory charade reaches its conclusion.absolute madness,what are they going to trade on the world stage matches ,clothes pegs and lucky charms or are they going to ask the nice men in Europe,India and anybody else who has our trading marks to give it all back.

  • We must now for credibility, for honesty, the well being of this nation; have a vote in December, when we will further note the dread consequences of the incompetences and lies that were proffered. Why wouldn’t we vote. More people than ever are concerned?

  • Imagine sitting around the kitchen table and deciding to go somewhere near the sea

    As you near the destination some of the people in the car notice that the car is going down a road which appears to disappear at the edge of the coast

    Some members in the car start to get worried and then some others shout can we just pull over

    Others in the vehicle shout ‘no we must not stop, pull over or waiver we all voted in the kitchen to go down this road and we must proceed’

    others proclaim but what is at the end of the road…..we don’t know, we will only know when we arrive there

    I wish there was a way of revoking my British Citizenship

  • Another subject for honesty is Ireland. I have just listened to a House of Commons sub-committee on Ireland and the three experts there have not come up with any solutions, so this problem will always be with us whether we have hard, soft Brexit or walk away with no deal. The hard line Brexiters seem to be prepared to ignore that problem altogether presumably in the hope that somehow it will just disappear.

  • The Ireland problem being insurmountable – is reason for another vote. Or, because of this unresolvable problem – reason enough to stop this leave lunacy. It is – still possible. We need brave politicians – where Are you?

  • The irony is that if you ask hard line Brexiteers how their lives have personally been impoverished by the EU, you only get generalised answers about unelected bureaucrats, gravy train, wanting to take back control etc. Of course reading article after article over their breakfast in the Daily Express/Mail about all of the above, may get them frothing at the mouth, but that’s not the same as actually making their lives poorer.