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Saturday, 5 November 2016

A mess entirely of the Conservative government's own making.

May must set out Brexit plan 'without delay’

Image result for theresa may david cameron

Before the referendum there was always a belief that the result would be debated in Parliament. What completely threw this government was that no one expected the result and Cameron had no plan for the possibility that that the people would vote leave. Theresa May is now faced with a referendum result, (a referendum which of course is "advisory") which she believes might be overturned by Parliament. In order to appease some elements of her party and other vested interests, she has chosen to use "Royal Prerogative" to pass the necessary legislation to trigger Article 50 without debate in Parliament. I believe that she is wrong and that the High Court judges are absolutely correct. I also believe that it would be a very brave or very foolish MP who would completely ignore the decision taken by the British people. However, having said that it is generally accepted now that if a referendum were held today, that decision would be a very different one. May has now backed herself into a very tight corner. Either she accepts the court decision (there is of course an appeal scheduled for December 7th) and puts the matter for debate in Parliament risking (in her view) a government defeat, or government holds another referendum (most unlikely) or she calls for a General Election (after meeting the requirements of the "Fixed Term Parliament Act) where membership of the European Union is the prime issue. 

Theresa May is being urged to go back to the polls after yesterday's ruling

The problem then is whether the government will campaign for "Brexit", to satisfy sections of her party but knowing that the majority of the British people would probably now favour "Remain". The other option is to campaign on a "Remain" platform and thereby propel the Conservative party into a very bloody and very destructive civil war. It is a mess entirely of the Conservative government's own making. Cameron and now May have created mayhem due to their lack of planning and foresight and she has little room for wriggling. In the mean time, we must hope and believe that the 11 Justices of the Supreme Court will uphold the decision and affirm the pre-eminence of Parliament and its members.