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We must revoke. But first let’s get a People’s Vote

by Luke Lythgoe | 21.03.2019

People are right to be concerned about the reckless course Theresa May is charting for our country. Hell, they should be furious – I am. But it’s not too late to salvage our democracy from the Brexit carnage this government has created. The best way to do that is to keep up the pressure for a People’s Vote.

A parliamentary petition to revoke Article 50 and stop Brexit outright had received one million signatures at time of writing. The nation is frustrated and scared. The date on which we could crash out of the EU is  only eight days away. The consequences would be horrific.

However, for those of us who feel sick at the thought of “no deal” but aren’t willing to be blackmailed into May’s miserable deal, there are still better options. The best is to get a People’s Vote, win a People’s Vote – and only then revoke Article 50.

Brexit began with a democratic process, and it should end with one. It may have been a mistake to hold a referendum in 2016. But it’s like driving into a cul-de-sac: we shouldn’t have done it in the first place; but the best way out is the way we went in.

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  March 23rd | Noon | Park Lane, London  

Our country is divided. The last two and a half years of broken promises and painful uncertainty have made the resentment worse. But simply pulling the plug on Brexit could mean these divisive arguments continuing for years.

Far better is making a democratic bid to heal the country. It’s up to pro-Europeans to make the positive case for the UK staying in the EU.

We need to show how working with our European allies gives a huge boost to our power and prosperity, how it brings opportunities for the people of this country, and safeguards peace in Northern Ireland. Now that people know the costs of Brexit, and the benefits we’re throwing away, they should have the final say on the future.

There’s still time. Much media reporting has presented a black-and-white choice between May’s deal or crashing out – with a longer extension off the table and any Brexit outcome that requires more time dead with it.

That’s not the case. Donald Tusk, who oversees the meetings of the 28 EU leaders, has not taken a longer extension off the table, as InFacts wrote yesterday. The UK would need to ask for one, but MPs still have the chance to force the prime minister’s hand next week.

That’s why the message of this Saturday’s big march on Parliament is so important. Put it to the people. It’s going to be loud. Our politicians must not ignore it.

Edited by Hugo Dixon

2 Responses to “We must revoke. But first let’s get a People’s Vote”

  • If Parliament does not approve the Withdrawal Agreement next Tuesday, then the condition for the short extension of Article 50 will not be met, and only 2 days left to find alternatives. Parliament will have to approve a People’s Vote before 29 March, in order to get the longer extension (promised for a second referendum by the EU) for that referendum to take place (plus a requirement to take part in EU elections. If a People’s Vote is rejected, and no extension can be made available, then either we crash out on 29 March with No Deal (to the delight of Brexiteers) or Parliament has to vote to revoke Article 50 at the eleventh hour to end the whole sorry business!

  • With the revoke article 50 petition now at over 5 million and counting, if more publicity could be given to this and all those who would vote remain in a second referendum persuaded to sign up, it is possible that it could exceed the brexit vote of 2016.

    In that case would another referendum be needed?