Tag Archives: second referendum

Words of warning on a Second Referendum

I have been a member of the Liberal Democrats for nearly a year now and a supporter since about 2012. I respect the party’s decision to advocate a second referendum in order to give Britain the opportunity to remain. Since the PM came back with her deal, I’ve put a lot of thought into whether to personally support a second referendum or not and have concluded that as a party we are playing with fire, a fire that will catch to a tinder dry nation and isn’t something we’re going to be able to control. Even if you disagree with …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 52 Comments

Vince Cable calls for an “adjudicator” in any Brexit deal referendum, plus votes for 16 and 17 year olds


In a speech to the North East of England People’s Vote rally in Newcastle this afternoon, Liberal Democrat Leader Vince Cable said:

Some say a People’s Vote would cause aggro, all the lies of 2016 would be repeated. We need to anticipate that. We need an adjudicator who can look at what campaigners say and fact check them properly.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 27 Comments

The dangers of the ‘people’s vote’

As the Chequers agreement and White Paper evince, the details of the interim package on offer are highly complicated. Submitting the terms and conditions of the Article 50 negotiations to a popular vote would be fraudulent. A referendum would be unlikely to elucidate the pros and cons of the Facilitated Customs Arrangement, the future of the City of London or the Irish backstop protocol. Rather, the hapless voter would face the same dilemma as vacillating parliamentarians – namely, a crude and invidious choice between the government’s Brexit deal and the cliff edge.

Ms. Miller & co make two gigantic misjudgments. The first is that, in the event of a referendum rejecting the Barnier package, the EU would be prepared to open up a new negotiation under Article 50 or to suspend Article 50 until the Brits sort themselves out. Having offered Cameron one new settlement for Britain in 2016 and May another in 2018, toleration of the British will be at an end. There will be no third negotiation. So what would be the referendum question? Moreover, on which side would Lib Dems be campaigning?

The second big mistake is to assume that the Remainers would ‘win’ the second referendum no matter the question. Opinion polls suggest that the outcome would be just as close as the first: certainly the assumption that Remain would win handsomely and settle the business of Britain’s place in Europe is an arrogant one, not supported by the facts.

Posted in News and Op-eds | Also tagged | 102 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarArnold Kiel 20th Feb - 4:06am
    Sean Hagan, I have not anywhere in any way expressed disdain for unprepared voters, just their abusers. David Raw: "Your comment is breathtakingly elitist and...
  • User AvatarIan Martin 20th Feb - 3:40am
    matt "she must have had Bangladeshi dual nationality" It is a question that she has Bangladesh nationality now and this will come before a British...
  • User AvatarDavid-1 20th Feb - 12:05am
    Surely the immediate question is whether some or all of the Gang of Seven (>Eight) can be brought to support Liberal Democrat positions in the...
  • User AvatarIan Patterson 19th Feb - 11:12pm
    At present atrophy rate we will be exceeded as fourth Commons party by weekend!
  • User AvatarMichael 1 19th Feb - 11:11pm
    Of interest is the sky data poll which has: Con 32% Lab 26% Ind Group 10% Lib Dems 9% UKIP 6% Compared to the Survation...
  • User AvatarGraham Evans 19th Feb - 11:01pm
    @ Denis Mollison You have to read AAV with a pitch of salt. Like NBN, it's a left wing blog which frequently distorts the reporting...