THE BLOG

Why Theresa May Should Step Down

21/11/2016 12:04
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It seems inevitable that the Supreme Court will dismiss the current Appeal and an enabling Bill will be tabled by the Government to give authority to the PM to serve Article 50 notice whenever the Cabinet (or perhaps just Mrs May) chooses to do so.

This would empower the PM to serve an irreversible notice regardless of the many adverse consequences, regardless of the views of the 63% of the electorate who did not choose to "Leave the EU", and regardless of the views of many of the 37% who did choose that binary option, but may now be feeling very alarmed at the prospect of a reckless "Hard Brexit" which they did not want.

We urge all MP's and the Cabinet to resist the forcing through of any such enabling Bill, for the following reasons:

Recent news items such as:

• Britain "probably leaving EU customs union", says Boris Johnson. Guardian 15 Nov 2016.
• Britain to borrow £100 billion more as growth slows due to Brexit. Bloomberg 15 Nov 2016.
• Boris Johnson is "saying things which are intellectually impossible". BBC News 16 Nov 2016. Speaking to the BBC's Newsnight, Dutch finance minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem... said Mr Johnson was putting forward options that "are really not available". "He's saying things that are intellectually impossible, politically unavailable, so I think he's not offering the British people a fair view of what is available and what can be achieved in these negotiations".
• Brexit campaigners created dangerously toxic EU debate where 'facts didn't matter', Home Affairs Committee inquiry hears. Independent 16 Nov 2016. "Mr Lowles said the intervention of ... Mr Johnson contributed to an atmosphere where, in a way, fact and reality didn't matter. It was all about emotion..."

Please note in particular the last item. The EU referendum campaign was a mockery of the tradition of British democracy. Facts were ignored, ugly emotions were drummed up. This was not "democracy", it was government by the media, by blatant lies and false promises, whipping up emotions into an anti-immigrant, anti-foreigner frenzy. We have all seen examples from the likes of the Daily Mail front pages.

A once great nation has been dragged down into the quagmire by an ill-conceived, poorly managed, and total uncontrolled process of public consultation, since hijacked by Mr Cameron into an irreversible political commitment.

We believe that ethically driven Conservative PM's such as Sir Winston Churchill, Harold Macmillan and Lady Thatcher would be ashamed and appalled if they could be here today to see how the present PM is cynically ignoring reality at the expense of the nation purely for the sake of preservation of the Party.

The vast majority now accept - even Nigel Farage - that the referendum was a poorly conceived and legally a non-binding consultation, as confirmed in the recent High Court judgment (at 106 and 107) and Parliament is free to decide what to do with the result, with regard to the best interests of the nation as a whole.

If the result was corrupted by manipulation, media, deceit and false promises, it is reasonable that the result should be REJECTED by Parliament.

The government should not issue a cynical enabling bill, but should permit Parliament itself to decide what to do next, with a debate and free vote in the House, OR set up a second referendum based not on manipulated emotions but on established facts, issued by an impartial committee of inquiry and disseminated through all media by law.

If the PM will not take see the inevitability of this course, she should step down and make way for a new leader of the Party. She could make a more useful contribution to national interests in the Lords.

Posted by Richard Bird, and supported by 365 other signatories.

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