THE BLOG

Vote For What Theresa May Believes In

20/04/2017 11:55

Have you already made your mind up in this general election?

Fresh from voting in the referendum last year, you'd be well within your rights to say you've had enough of chronic votingitis. This peeved lady certainly has. Or are you a serial election lover? Someone afflicted with BDSM but with FPTP in it? I'll leave your imagination to ponder what that position could be.

In any case, an election is here to ponder about. I think you should vote Lib Dem. It's simple to say why.

As you know, Brexit is upon us. But this isn't just any old Brexit. It's a hard, rock-like Brexit. That means no single market and none of the benefits for us. Yet instead of a Dwayne Johnson, Baywatch-esque, hard Brexit hero, the reality is that May is morphing into Adam Sandler: condemning our country to a shoddy path of poor quality. We're not being led into the nirvana of Empire 2.0 (sorry, Nigel); we're being led down a rabbit's derriere hole that the PM said was a bad idea.

Here's what she said before the Brexit referendum:

"The reality is that we do not know on what terms we would win access to the single market. We do know that in a negotiation we would need to make concessions in order to access it, and those concessions could well be about accepting EU regulations, over which we would have no say, making financial contributions, just as we do now, accepting free movement rules, just as we do now, or quite possibly all three combined.

"It is not clear why other EU member states would give Britain a better deal than they themselves enjoy."

Sounds sensible, doesn't it? But this is what May said after:

"But the great prize for this country - the opportunity ahead - is to use this moment to build a truly Global Britain. A country that reaches out to old friends and new allies alike. A great, global, trading nation. And one of the firmest advocates for free trade anywhere in the world."

That's a flip worthy of winning the world record for making the fastest ever pancake. Of course, given how she flip-flopped over raising National Insurance contributions, it's hardly out of character.

The truth is the PM, in her more sensible days, thought and knows in her blue bones that Brexit is a dodgy idea. Worse: she knew and believed that a hard Brexit would bruise Britain rather than help her flourish.

What we're being presented with in this election is a PM running around as if she's some latter-day Churchill, fighting valiantly for victory.

Er, no.

What we have is a PM, dealt a dire hand by her weak predecessor, having her strings pulled by the hard Brexiters in the Tory party. It's like she's stuck in a Kermit meme. And just like dear David Cameron, she can't control them. They've set the agenda with all the navigational ability of the Costa Concordia.

Remember that £350m fib plastered on the pro-Brexit battle bus? If you think the hard Brexiters have suddenly converted to appreciating funny old things like facts, thing again.

To stop a hard Brexit in its tracks, we need MPs who agree with old-school May that such a move is a bad idea.

The only party and people to consistently challenge and fight this hard Brexit across the whole country are the Liberal Democrats.

Every vote for a Liberal Democrat in this election is a vote against hard Brexit. Every elected Liberal Democrat MP is another voice and vote in parliament who can stop this mistake May is making.

As the PM put it:

"I think the economic arguments are clear," she said. "I think being part of a 500-million trading bloc is significant for us."

"If we were not in Europe, I think there would be firms and companies who would be looking to say, do they need to develop a mainland Europe presence rather than a UK presence? So I think there are definite benefits for us in economic terms."

Yes, Prime Minister. I couldn't agree with you more. We gain from Europe. We need to stop this economic self-amputation. This is the best chance we have.

May has made this election a Brexit election, so tell her exactly what you think. Vote Lib Dem on the 8th of June and ask other people to do the same. We can stop a hard Brexit now.

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