Sunday morning interviews open thread

This morning, politicians are lining up to talk to the Sunday political programmes – but those in favour of a People’s Vote don’t seem to have been invited to the party.

There is no serious non Conservative psychodrama opposition to the PM’s deal and nobody saying that there is an alternative – we can be given the chance to accept or reject the deal so that the Government isn’t marking its own homework.

You would have thought that the Leader of the Opposition would have something important to say. Unfortunately, he poured cold water on the idea of a People’s Vote and said that he he didn’t know how he would vote in it. At the risk of sounding a bit too on message, we really do ned to demand better.

I may be annoyed with our Vince on various internal matters at the moment, but he is very clear that Liberal Democrats want a People’s Vote as a means of securing an Exit from Brexit. He knows that staying in the EU is in the national interest.  He should be invited on to make that case. I have no doubt that our people will have done all they can to get him on. You have to ask why he isn’t.

I am disappointed that Sophy Ridge is not pointing out to May that her Deal is effectively a Blind Brexit that pushes a lot of the important stuff, like our future trading relationship, into the very long grass, after we have left. This is why we need the option to stay in so that we can make a choice between continuing the trading relationship we have that has brought us prosperity, or whether we take a leap in the dark.

The CBI has been brought out to support the deal on the grounds of certainty for business. If we go for this deal, we don’t know what terms business will face in two years time. If we have a People’s Vote, and choose to stay in, we have as much certainty as it is possible to have about continuity of current arrangements within 6 months.

The sensible opposition to the Brexit deal is not being given an airing.

Tom Brake commented on Corbyn’s dismal performance:

People can see what a mess the Brexit Deal is and it beggars belief that the Labour leadership continue to not want to give people a say on it.

Liberal Democrats have led the campaign for a vote on the deal since the referendum and will keep up the fight for an Exit from Brexit, but it is now time for Corbyn and the Labour frontbench to stop playing games and back a People’s Vote.

And now we have Marr with Tom Newton-Dunn, Kwasi Kwarteng and Polly Toynbee reviewing the papers.

Newton-Dunn reckons that there are around 40 letters in, and cites 230 MPs as the threshold she needs to pass n order to stay as PM.

Polly Toynbee says that the Raab wing of the party are attacking May with “extraordinary savagery.” She seeks to reassure that there is no majority in the House of Commons for his desired no deal outcome.

Things look up with Nicola Sturgeon saying that SNP MPs will vote against the withdrawal agreement “as things stand at the moment.”

She says it would be deeply irresponsible of House of Commons to endorse a “blindfold Brexit.”

She calls for calm heads to work out what should happen next. She cites alternative of a People’s Vote alongside remaining in customs unions and single market.

The problem is, though, that she’s saying that remaining in the customs union and single market would be fine – but we still wouldn’t have MEPs and commissioners to help shape EU policy so it would put us at a real disadvantage.

She does sensibly raise the issue of extending Article 50 – which, she says, the EU would agree to if we were changing direction.

She also said she’d welcome a General Election. I doubt she does given that so many of her MPs have wafer thin majorities.

Now we have Shami Chakrabarti looking very uncomfortable. Not sure she’s at one with the Corbyn approach on this. She really really doesn’t want to leave on the terms.

She’s leaving the possibility of Labour waving this deal through if it has a few tweaks to make it look like it fits Labour’s six tests.

Dominic Raab, when challenged on leadership ambitions, talks about not adding to the letters and supporting the Prime Minister but doesn’t rule out standing if she falls. That sounds like he’s happy to have others do the dirty work and then come in to a contest with clean hands.

He’s also downplaying the role of Parliament in all of this, saying that it is powerless to change things.

My husband has just asked if the leadership of Tory, Labour and SNP were on The Apprentice, how many would Alan Sugar have fired by now for incompetence.

Earlier this week, Willie Rennie memorably said at First Minister’s Questions  that the Scottish Tories were as much use as a piano in a pigsty. And we all remember that he knows what goes on in pigsties.  This morning, he’s elaborated on that:

First the Scottish Conservatives told us that they had the ear of Government. Then they stamped their feet over the Northern Ireland backstop and fishing rights. Now they bow their heads and meekly accept a bad deal.

Ruth Davidson should instill some backbone in her wavering troops and tell them to stick to their red lines.

The Scottish Conservatives can see as well as the rest of us that Brexit is total chaos. It’s time for the public to take back control of this process through a People’s Vote with the option to remain in the EU.

Scottish viewers are now being treated to Kirsteine Hair, Tory MP for Angus, who couldn’t make up her mind to vote on 23rd June 2016 so she didn’t, fail to say whether she is going to back the current deal.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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  • Those in power just want this over with. Hence everyone and their cat in the media are getting behind May. Even the Daily Wail and The Depress have tried to swing behind her. Unfortunately for them, they have discovered after spending decades whipping up the frothing hordes, a few headlines are not changing their froth production. The aim is to drag Brexit across the line and hope the general population lose intrest in the continuing talks about our future; which will go on for years. I suspect for a few “intrest” will indeed be lost but for many the radical changes that will occur will make that an impossibility. The media will parade the pantomime villains of Farage, wee Mogg and Co to contrast them against Saint Theresa but they won’t allow remain polticians a voice because that isn’t in their play book.

  • William Fowler 18th Nov '18 - 12:08pm

    Before the Corbyn interview, some of the commentators were saying he might have something up his sleeve to surprise us with but it was the same old stuff he churns out. I have yet to see any interviewer make the point that he and the rest don’t want to be in the single market or EU because it would stop them imposing Marxist policies on the British people.

    If Mrs May can flesh out the future trade part of the deal she may yet bring around the Brexiteers.

    I do hope young people wise up to Labour’s lack of interest in staying in the EU but don’t see Sir Vince being able to get through to them.

  • Some tweets from Vince

    “The prevarication by @jeremycorbyn on a #PeoplesVote is a complete abdication of leadership. Now that @theresa_may has accepted that #NoBrexit is a strong possibility he has the parliamentary numbers to make it happen but won’t.”

    “I am afraid the socialist leader of the past will go down in history as Mrs May’s little helper.”

  • Lorenzo Cherin 18th Nov '18 - 1:32pm

    If Andy Burham had become leader none of these things would be as now. We might have won the vote as we could see three leaders campaign together, but either way, now we would have a leader with personality and a policy.

    I yearn for a mainstream undivided party that welcomes many views but can emerge. We are not emerging. How any could like the BBC is beyond me. Question time et all, never a lib dem in sight.

  • John Marriott 18th Nov '18 - 5:20pm

    @Lorenzo Cherin
    Better the BBC than Fox News. Don’t knock it. If anything it might be too impartial. As for the Lib Dems, for most people they are sadly an irrelevance. As for Labour, all they appear to want is a General Election. Do they honestly think that having them in charge would make any difference?

    Oh, and I wish politicians would stop saying that they respect the result of the 2016 Referendum when they clearly don’t. And stop saying that 52% of the people voted to leave. No. 38% of the people voted to leave and around 27% didn’t vote at all!

    If the ‘deal’ fails then there has got to be another referendum.

  • Fed up of not seeing LibDems on TV? There is something we can all do about this, but very few of us seem to bother. I work in the media industry and have often asked TV producers why they consistently under-use us. Their general response is to shrug and say, “You guys don’t complain enough.”
    TV news is a consumer industry and we are all consumers. They do take notice of us when we make ourselves heard, so…… COMPLAIN! Here – I’ll help you:
    PS Send these links round your local party members and motivate them to complain as well. Not just today but every time a particular show doesn’t include us.

  • Thanks David, and yes I would hope our MPs and press team do complain to the broadcasters. But we shouldn’t just leave it to them. We as members/supporters should do it as well. As viewers we have a certain consumer power. We should ALL use it.

  • Since there is a lot of division on whether to have a further referendum on our membership of the European Union, perhaps we should advocate a referendum on whether to have a referendum?

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