PRO-EU group admits call for new referendum would cost Labour next GE

Pro-referendum group Best for Britain’s polling is inconvenient to the ‘PV’ case

A week ago the SKWAWKBOX published analysis of the latest polling by Survation – the only polling company to correctly predict the results in the last two general elections – showing that Labour would lose general election votes in any scenario in which the party led calls for a new referendum. The only situation where Labour could support a so-called “people’s vote” (PV) would be if the Tories called one.

Two days ago, the latest ComRes poll supported that analysis, by showing that more voters across the country oppose a new referendum and believe that the 2016 result should be honoured.

Predictably, those results and the analysis were attacked by PV-enthusiasts, largely on the grounds that the polls were commissioned by right-wing, pro-Brexit newspapers – and spokespeople for PV and ‘stop Brexit’ groups have continued to insist that it’s somehow obvious that Labour should lead the charge for a new referendum and that this would magically carry Labour into power.

An inconvenient truth

But today, leaked results from a poll conducted by one of the leading anti-Brexit groups has thrown a spanner into the works of those who continue to try to push Labour into a PV or any other stance that could be perceived as likely to prevent Brexit.

The Best for Britain group is no natural ally of a left-wing Labour Party. Its board includes Blairite former Health Secretary Alan Milburn and an investor with links to an institute connected to at least one US general and a former CIA director.

Yet polling commissioned by the group – which has emerged because of a leak, rather than its publication – agrees that Labour would lose votes if it came out against Brexit, which would certainly include any move to push a PV, given the known anti-Brexit motivation of the vast majority of those backing it. Whether the polling would have been released if not leaked is not known.

The poll, which was obtained by the Guardian newspaper – itself usually an advocate of a new referendum – shows that almost a third of voters would be less likely to vote Labour if the party opposed Brexit, while only a quarter said they it would make them more likely to back the party, a net loss for Labour of around 8%.

Best for Britain supports a new referendum, so the findings are inconvenient. The poll, conducted by Populus, also showed Labour would lose more Labour voters than it could gain from those who voted Tory at the last election.

A spokesperson for Best for Britain claimed that the ‘vast majority’ of Labour voters would not desert the party if it tried to prevent Brexit – but had to admit that Labour needs to win voters who voted Conservative or UKIP at the last general election if it wants to win the next one.

SKWAWKBOX comment:

The evidence continues to mount that Jeremy Corbyn and his team are handling the Brexit issue exactly right for the majority of people in this country and for the disadvantaged who desperately need a Labour government, in or out of the EU.

This new evidence, commissioned by an organisation that wants another referendum, is another blow to the claims of those who call most loudly for a new referendum that Labour ‘must’ back one.

Do they simply not care that any such move by Labour would keep the UK’s suffering millions in desperate straits – or are they actively looking to prevent a Corbyn government in spite of the consequences for our most vulnerable?

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  1. The PV Campaign must know this is true. If Labour joined with the Tories in preventing Brexit the blame would be conveniently shared. May has come up with a Plan that has proven unacceptable and she either changes it or resigns; Labour doesn’t own that debacle and shouldn’t collude in what will be branded as an attempt to circumvent Brexit. Corbyn will be the ‘traitor’ – again! it will all be his fault. The Government is crumbling in the face of deadlines and Labour should keep up the pressure in Parliament, in public and not behind soundproofed doors. May has to decide whether she ditches her right wing and goes for a customs union that might well get the majority. Ironically the opposition would be wise to copy May’s own crude tactic – sail close to No Deal to scare the dissenters into line; it can work both ways! But if she sticks with Party above Country there is nothing that can be discussed.

  2. I don’t think the major issue that people had with the polls you quoted from was that they were both commissioned by a RW paper but rather the exaggerated claims that were made over a statistically insignificant 1 or 2 percentage points.

    There is usually a reason for people only quoting selected excerpts from a poll without giving access to the entire results of that poll and it is usually that the the rest of the poll doesn’t support their narrative.

    I will reserve judgement until I can view the full poll.

    1. I haven’t seen the full results, either. What I have seen suggests a basically neutral effect, with gains and losses quite balanced within the range of error – but no net gain from adopting a pro-Brexit position.

      But the problem with polls is you can’t at one minute say they are all biased rubbish, and the next celebrate one whose findings seem to support your own predilections. That’s a ‘sauce for the goose/gander’ game – not serious argument.

      All reasonably devised polls are bricks in the wall of evidence, with all the necessary reservations. And they don’t necessarily settle arguments that involve value judgements and their biases.

      1. How you of all people have the audacity to come here and play down the importance of polls when you’ve been trolling this blog purely on the “evidence” of remain sponsored polls for the last 2 years is beyond me. You should hag your head in shame.

      2. FFS, lundiel – You don’t even seem to understand what people *actually* write, so ingrained is you conditioned response.

        Do remember that ‘Remain fanatics’ are the majority of Labour support – although the ‘fanatics’ bit is your own confection.

        Solid Labour members and voters are simply more pro-Remain than the wider public. That is the consistent finding, which this particular poll isn’t concerned with. That’s the nature of things. Get used to it.

        It’s you who picks and chooses polls and then builds various castles in the air, oscillating between ‘All polls are fraudulent rubbish’ and ‘This poll is gospel validation of my prejudice’

        Do try harder to understand – and lower the blood pressure.

      3. I’ve told you over and over again, most remain supporters reluctantly accept the referendum result, it’s only fanatics who refuse to believe they lost. You and your other identity (SteveH), have bombarded this blog with YouGov marketing push-poll results, claiming they represent factual data when I have always told you they are propaganda. Stop pretending you wish Labour anything other than harm.

      4. lundiel 19/01/2019 at 7:38 pm

        I guess people will just have to weigh it up for themselves whether to put their faith in the evidence provided by the collective results of numerous polls (confirmed by separate academic research) or alternatively trust your unevidenced assertions.

      5. My “unevidenced assertions” like a general election result where the remain party got about 22 seats?

      6. lundiel 19/01/2019 at 8:42 pm

        You are of course entitled to your opinion, but I think that the LibDems betraying their supporters principles by enabling Tory austerity and capitulating to the Tories over the PR referendum had a lot more to do with the collapse of the LibDem vote.

      7. RH, FFS, lundiel – You don’t even seem to understand what people *actually* write, so ingrained is you conditioned response.
        Pot kettle

  3. Whatever, it makes an absolute mockery of the outrageous claims by remain fanatics below the line, here and in the Guardian and the Independent, that “up to 90% of Labour members and voters want a second referendum. It would mean that Labour members/voters were totally out of step with the public at large and nothing supports that.
    It was only a matter of time before a poll came back to bite them, it wouldn’t surprise me if they’d buried several similar polls to support the project fear narrative.

    1. lundiel 19/01/2019 at 6:29 pm

      It was only a matter of time before a poll came back to bite them,

      Whoopee out of all the countless polls published it’s only taken you 2 years to find one poll that doesn’t really show what the above article claims. I suggest you read past the Guardian’s own headline (who published the leak) because it is at odds with the substance of their article which seems to show that overall there is a more or less neutral outcome.
      I guess we’ll have to wait and see if you are still as enthusiastic about the poll when it is published in full.

  4. 400 constituencies voted Leave and 250 Remain so perhaps it’s not rocket science.
    One posh woman with a big house in a meeting I was at actually said some of those who voted Leave weren’t fit to vote (she also said she joined Labour to get rid of Corbyn and we needed to get back to the middle – which had destroyed Labour in Scotland and has destroyed every Labour Party in Europe, the only 2 exceptions to this approacb were the successes of the Left in the UK and Portugal who actually stood for something).
    I don’t believe in intelligence and treat every voter with respect and their vote as equal, I accept the democratic result of the referendum and from an adult education background I often found some of the poorest people I worked with came up with great ideas.
    But meanwhile the far right are organising.
    I was on a RMT picket line in my city today and a few of the far right barbarians were due at a demo today in my city too.
    But what are they but the useful idiots of the rich and powerful, they try to divide diverse working people and because of their political ignorance claim they want their country back – blaming other diverse working people!
    But they are blind to the real culprits – the rich and powerful Neo-Liberal capitalists. But then again what in our country is ours – the land, banks, mail, rail, public utilities, water etc? You can’t walk 30 mile without a sign – Private Property – Keep Out!
    But it could be ours and run democratically to benefit all with staff and communities having a say with a Leff wing democratic socialist government under JC.
    But you almost have to pity racists, they are insular, they fall for capitalist hegemony and nationalism and rarely mix, they are pathetic human beings who tragically may never recognise the richness of diversity.
    They may have never fully lived!
    We can have internationalism between independent nation states and without the Neo-Liberal EC.
    Diverse working people of the World unite!

  5. As I’ve pointed out : constituencies don’t vote.

    and :

    “I accept the democratic result of the referendum”

    You mean that you accept that only a minority voted for Brexit? Or are you of the pick ‘n’ mix persuasion in terms of democracy that denies an opportunity for clarification of this confused minority result?

    The sad fact is that Brexit is an elite (in the descriptive sense) right wing scam operation, not a liberating vote for the people.

    1. Constituencies elect representatives, that’s parliamentary democracy. You don’t like referendums and you don’t like parliamentary democracy if it doesn’t go hour way. You Blairites always had an authoritarian mindset.

  6. “Best for Britain” is a repellent, anti Labour, neoliberal organisation awash with corporate/foreign cash. Bravo to the leaker.

    1. lundiel 19/01/2019 at 7:52 pm

      ….. which begs the question of why are you placing so much trust in the selective reporting of a poll commissioned by them

      1. I’m not. I’m laughing at your wriggling and the misfortune that’s befallen Blair for Britain. You and your pal have based all your arguments on “poll” results, I think it’s hilarious that a poll by Blair for Britain has gone tits up…..and even better to see your back peddling.

    2. ““Best for Britain” is a repellent, anti Labour, neoliberal organisation awash with corporate/foreign cash. Bravo to the leaker.” etc.

      I really don’t understand why you get so up-tight as to lose all sense of reasoned argument.

      The blunt fact is that half the country supports ‘Remain’ and about the same ‘Leave’. Beyond that, the referendum, by any normal criterion was a farce and indecisive, with no clear resultant majority (Compare with the 1976 one)

      That much is simple fact. I really don’t get all this nervous energy going into getting wound up about the simple fact that a lot of people hold different views from you. It’s just the situation.

      Currently, the electorate is largely totally bemused and sick of the whole business, whilst parliament is – unsurprisingly – unable to reach an agreement about a confected problem that wasn’t perceived as one until Cameron decided to try to reconcile Tory Party differences by the divisive referendum. The one reasonable consensus that there is – is that this is a hell of a diversion and total waste of time when there are major real issues to be addressed.

      Beyond the basic facts, it is probable that the balance has tipped towards ‘Remain’ over the last few years, given the demographic age shift – and the wider knowledge of the issues that has ensued.

      So – it is hardly surprising, given all that, that those of us who thought Leave was a daft idea in the first place will argue that another referendum *may* be a way forward in this deadlock that has made the country an international joke. As said, there was nothing decisive, let alone sacred, about the first vote. The idea that there is something essentially ‘anti-democratic’ in the idea is simply twisted logic – although you can argue against the idea on practical grounds.

      Why you have to start imputing all sorts of ulterior motives to those many and varied who advocate the ‘Remain’ position on the key issue of the day, I’m not sure. Nor am I sure why you have to start inventing all sorts of wild scenarios (‘ You and your pal’) regarding those of us who express those views here.

      There are a lot of us on the left who are ‘Remainers’ – as the membership of the Party shows. Basically, and without going into detail here, we simply don’t find a socialist oriented Brexit a feasible scenario, despite the failings of the present EU.

      This isn’t a neoliberal conspiracy of ‘Blairites’ or ‘Centrists’ at all – it’s a broadly held view – as the referendum showed.

      The neoliberal conspiracy idea, in fact, better describes the original ‘Leave’ impulse.It originated in the far-right adopters of the Ayn Rand version of the righteousness of markets, as expressed in ‘Britannia Unchained’, and supported by the right-wing propaganda press, whose Johnsonian anti-EU stuff was consistently repeated by Leave advocates. That is why the key faces of the Leave campaign are all right-wing Tories.

      Argue against the ideas – but adhere to the facts, such as they are, and stop erecting ill-tempered fantasies when those facts don’t simply illustrate your arguments.

      1. More back peddling from RH who sees he’s gone over the top and writes a book trying to portray himself as the model of moderation.

      2. I fear that it is you who is continually writing fiction in a sort of sustained uncontrolled rant.

        It’s becoming simply delusional shouting.

  7. lundiel 19/01/2019 at 8:13 pm

    I’m not.

    I’ll leave it to others to read your earlier comments above and judge for themselves whether that is true

    I am not wriggling or backtracking in any way at all. I have simply pointed out the consistent evidence of numerous polls and academic research over an extended period is not invalidated by the partially published leaked results of a single poll that on the information so far published shows nothing more than a neutral outcome. I may alter my views, as any reasonable person would do, if further information is published that outweighs the wealth of evidence already published.

  8. All those calling for a ‘people’s vote’…

    If the Referendum result had been in Remain’s favour but still the same percentage – 51.89% – would you still be calling for a second referendum?

    1. No, because we would be in a completely different situation wouldn’t we. We would still be in the EU on exactly the same terms but with Cameron’s additional opt-out from greater integration.

      For starters we wouldn’t be arguing over a withdrawal agreement would we. What I’m asking for is a vote on the actual deal. If the results had been reversed then there would be no need for a second vote on the actual deal because there wouldn’t be a new deal to vote for.

      Of course you would be entitled to continue your fight and seek to promote the election of MPs who would support your wish for another EU referendum.

      The two situations just aren’t comparable

      1. The words ‘hypocrisy’ and ‘double standards’ come to mind.

        You don’t actually want a ‘people’s vote’ (whatever that is). You want to override a democratically arrived at result and rejoin the EU.

      2. loftkarlsson 19/01/2019 at 10:03 pm

        No – I’ve been quite clear about my position above. You are of course at liberty to just ignore what I’ve said because it doesn’t fit your agenda but doing so doesn’t really do much for your credibility.

        I don’t want to rejoin the EU, we haven’t left yet, I simply want to stay in the EU rather than leave on a crap deal that nobody wants. If you think the deal that May has ‘negotiated’ is a winner then you would welcome a second referendum to ratify it.

    2. “If the Referendum result had been in Remain’s favour but still the same percentage – 51.89% – would you still be calling for a second referendum?”

      As has been pointed out – this scenario wouldn’t have occurred, but that well-known taker of the EU coin – Nigel the Broker Farrago – certainly did say that he thought such a result would indicate the need for an action replay.

    1. You are right and I apologise. I completely concur with the article you linked to, it’s the same logic that drives my antipathy to a second vote.

    2. Agreed Danny , re comments , I’ve pretty much given up on contributing to debates , actions are more important now at Branch and CLP level to ensure that JC is supported even more so in the face of the PV movement .

    3. Danny 20/01/2019 at 6:58 am ·
      ”The Comments section of this blogsite is sadly becoming unreadable being hogged by too few individuals,”

      Yes, agreed – but hijacked by the same two individuals spouting the same tired, rehashed arld shite on the same issue. Even when something negative (to them) comes from a group that holds the exact same consensus as theirs it’s: ‘But…but…but.’

      Never a word about austerity, never questioning the likes of mann, umunna and the rest of the shithouses’ dispositions. Oh, no – it’s all about how their ‘comrades’ (They’re no comrades of mine) have ruined everything they (and bliar, mandelsson, etc) hold sacred.

      Corbyn’s M.O. will be scrutinised microscopically and criticised at every opportunity – and so will those endorsing his M.O.

      For them It’s nobody else’s fault but labour voters what voted to leave…And especially those who entrust Corbyn to deliver a more socialist Govt. in future.

      They’ll have a sisyphean task convincing me (for one) that they’re enamoured with the idea of a Corbyn-led, socialist Govt. But it doesn’t stop their risible attempts to do so.

      And it’s plain that not only do they think (Labour) leave voters are beneath their intellectual level, they also delude themselves we’re unable enough to cotton on to exactly what they’re about. Like Bliar they think their views are infallible and relevant.

      Essentially, they don’t want change from anything 1997-2010 and only slight change from. They are not progressives any way shape nor form; unwilling to break from the one-party state we’ve effectively had since 1979, and if they think they’re convincing anybody that they’re on the left (as is currently being reclaimed) then it’s them who are deluded.

      It’s exactly the views and attitudes of those two that led plenty to want to leave. And in my case will ALWAYS want out.

      1. *Awaits the default ‘virtue signalling’ or other political buzzword response…

      2. ”Essentially, they don’t want change from anything 1997-2010 and only slight change from.”

        Was meant to read: ”Essentially, they don’t want change from anything 1997-2010 and only slight change from then on’

      3. “hijacked by the same two individuals spouting the same tired, rehashed arld shite on the same issue”

        … in the first of three consecutive posts 🙂

      4. RH 20/01/2019 at 11:06 am · ·
        “hijacked by the same two individuals spouting the same tired, rehashed arld shite on the same issue”

        … in the first of three consecutive posts 🙂


        It’s the gift that keeps giving…ho-hum. Too dense to realise it’s own hypocrisy which I’ll have to spell out for it’s own benefit…ho-hum…

        Yes dicky, three consecutive posts – One of those posts being a correction to the original.

        How many posts have you made on this thread?

        Or perhaps your alter ego’d like to come on next and give us all a word count, too?

        Now, run along quickly. 😀

  9. Another poll, and disagreements about it.
    We are in different times politically. It amazes me how many totally forget Labours vote share being up in the last election. With Blairite wrecking tactics.
    Tories vote was up as well.
    Polls are ignorant towards none voters and push the narrative, you need to have swing voters.
    For the first time, we actually do have something to vote for. What Labour are selling is being bought.
    Any backtracking would be seen as (Mays favourite words, nothing has changed)
    Stop being ignorant too the non voters and falling for the trap of moderates arguments of old.

  10. It’s not at all surprising that because the Brexiters are not being allowed to have it all their own way they are bleating about being challenged in this comments section.

    According to Skwarky’s figures, this blog has more than 40k readers and every single one of them I assume is able to comment if they wish. Fanatical Brexiters of course do not want to see or hear any other view but their own, otherwise they would support giving the public the democratic option to change their mind over Brexit.

    As soon as even a suggestion is made that there is just a possibility the public as a whole may come to a different view in another vote, now they know there is no such thing as any form of Brexit which will benefit the country, a red mist comes up over the Brexstremist’s eyes and they collapse in convulsions of anger in case their precious Brexit is put at risk.

    Democracy to Brexstremists becomes something which must be avoided at all costs when it could go against their imperialist plans.

    1. It’s not at all surprising that because the Brexiters are not being allowed to have it all their own way they are bleating about being challenged in this comments section.

      According to Skwarky’s figures, this blog has more than 40k readers and every single one of them I assume is able to comment if they wish.


      Yadda, yadda, yadda…

      So what you’re saying jack, is that the ‘brexiteers’ have hijacked the forum at the expense of the 40k readers that just might all be potential remainers but who don’t come on here in case the few brexiteers hand them their arses over their arguments too?

      *Shakes head, tuts, rolls eyes, and sighs*

    2. Sadly, that’s true. In terms of the viewpoints on this blog, three of us – and a couple of less vocal ones, put forward versions of a wide swathe of opinion in the Labour Party – that of ‘Remain’ voters. The majority of postings represent the minority view of ‘Leave’ in some form.

      What is noticeable in these recent posts is the resentment towards anything other than ‘I agree with Nick’ type messages – and look where that landed the LibDems and Nick!

      What is even more noticeable is the too frequent substitution of playground shouting for any attempt at argument. Anything other than play the ball. No problem for me – water and duck – but hardly the incisive material of an intelligent discussion.

      Of course, this tends to underline the weakness of arguments for Leave – so I could be pleased at the point of view held by most of the Party being made without much effort.

      But I’d prefer The Skwawkbox to be other than simply an echo chamber of tedious assent. I can get that in the letters page of the Telegraph.

  11. The Toffee (597) If you can’t understand what I’m saying, how the heck can you even begin to understand the complexities of Brexit?

    No wonder we are in such a mess !!!

    1. Lad, aren’t you or the other two, still not fed up of having yers arses handed to you?

      You cannot (Or refuse to) even grasp the simplicities of how democracy works, so you’re in no position to preach to anybody about ‘complexities’.

  12. The Toffee (597) Calm down you are becoming even more incoherent than usual.

    1. ‘More incoherent than usual’ he says…

      From someone who refuses to accept the democratic process for all sorts of nonsensical reasons…

      From someone who complains about others doing exactly what he and his side have been doing all along…

      From someone expert in telling others he knows their own minds better than they do…

      Turn it in.

  13. The Toffee (597) As I said, calm down and when you recover your composure, please give me an example, with quotations, of all those accusations you have just listed.

  14. You want examples? Oh there’s a myraid of them from the one comment alone on this thread. If I trawled through your post history I could write volumes of examples….

    Here’s one regarding your hypocrisy, jack.

    ”It’s not at all surprising that because the Brexiters are not being allowed to have it all their own way they are bleating about being challenged in this comments section.”

    ‘Bleating about being challenged’ is it?

    I’m afraid not, squire. You refuse to accept a democratically arrived at decision, and are trying to deflect from the glaringly obvious shortcoming in your own (non) argument.

    Want another about your hypocrisy, jack? OK, glad to oblige…

    ”Democracy to Brexstremists becomes something which must be avoided at all costs when it could go against their imperialist plans.”

    You refuse to accept the result of a democratically arrived at decision. Until you do, any other argument you bring regarding democracy carries as much weight as a moth’s fart. It really IS that simple.

    You also mistakenly seem to think that people who voted leave are ‘scared’ of any new vote you’re stamping your feet to obtain, but they
    re not ‘scred’ they’re getting severely pissed off about you frustrating the democratic processes.

    That’s as well as you telling people they didn’t know what they were voting for in the first place*; thereby showing an incredible amount of arrogance that’d get you flattened in an alehouse.

    ‘Brexstemists’…I don’t see anywhere near as many examples of childish name-calling like ‘remoaner’ as I do ‘brexstremist’ on here. I don’t see the staggering amount of deliberately antagonistic comments and veiled slurs from the pro-brexit commentary as I do the pro-remain.

    Oh, and ‘brexit imperialism’ he says…from someone who bilndly supports an undemocratic (Yes it’s THAT word again, jack – in it’s CORRECT context this time) expansionist, corporate-shill trading bloc.

    So there’s a few examples, now off you pop.

    *You’ve done so in the past. I can’t be arsed looking for an example though.

    1. “Bleating about being challenged’ is it?”

      Essentially – yes. It certainly isn’t argument about the issues to simply rant about other posts.

  15. The Toffee (597) Well you certainly failed on that little task.

    Just to take one of your ‘answers’:

    “I’m afraid not, squire. You refuse to accept a democratically arrived at decision, and are trying to deflect from the glaringly obvious shortcoming in your own (non) argument.”

    You made an assertion but then totally failed to back it up. Please explain what is the shortcoming?

    1. jack, seriously, you’re boring me to the point of annoying me now.

      I used to think there was perhaps a modicum of intelligence but with you playing dumb time after time I’m doubting that very much; and as a result I’m not gonna waste any more time explaining, to you, your own argument’s woeful failings.

      Except to say it revlves around one word, and your inherently alien concept of it.

      That word is ‘Democracy’.

    2. This is getting very boring guys; can’t you just communicate privately? Life is too short

  16. The Toffee (597) If you can’t stand the heat……..

    I had a feeling you had heard the word ‘democracy’ somewhere, maybe it was from one of my comments?

    Your next task is to find out what it means.

      1. The Toffee (597) 20/01/2019 at 3:45 pm

        Impressive. You’ve shown a remarkable degree of self awareness, your comment so neatly sums up your character.

  17. So not wishing to understand or recognise the meaning of democracy you scuttle off. If you ever want to debate anything seriously, make sure you can see it through.

    1. ”So not wishing to understand or recognise the meaning of democracy you scuttle off. If you ever want to debate anything seriously, make sure you can see it through.”


      Read that back to yourself with due attention (I appreciate it’s gargantuan task for you), and then take as long as you need to let it dawn on you just how much of an imbecilic entitled twunt it’s shown you up to be. But don’t take too long; I’ve only got a few decades left…

      Not only are you stamping your feet to get your own way over another vote before the thing we voted on first time about has been implemented, you’ve also clearly convinced yourself that I’m here for the sole purpose of debating you.

      Well you can get to fuck out of it if you think I’m dropping everything to cater for you and your fuckwittery. You really have proved beyond doubt that you’re a clueless, conceited, over-indulged, bellyaching brat.

      As for your ludicrous concept of democracy, well there’s a saying that you can’t educate pork. I tried, but the annoying grunts just became insufferable squeals.

  18. If the referendum is not honoured? How will Corbyn respond to claims that he is “undemocratic” or a “traitor” by the media, government, radio presenters, Nigel Farage and even many of his own voters? What do I say to my work colleagues and mates who would ditch Labour and either not vote, or vote for the Tories / UKIP / UKIP 2.0?

    And if it causes him to lose a general election spectacularly, and opens the door for the Progress lot take control, then what?

    Far better Labour Leave, than Tory Leave. If Ed Miliband had offered a referendum on the EU, he may well not have lost in 2015. And even if he had lost the referendum, we’d be having Ed Miliband negotiating a Leave deal, rather than the idiots we have now. Which would be far better than the current farce.

    1. Thank you . Something other than ‘Yadda-yadda”.

      I don’t agree with all your analysis – but at least it is that.

    2. … and, thinking about it – if that scenario had occurred, I think we would have ended up with much the same shitfest as we have now – which is inherent in the very idea of Brexit.

      But, beyond that, I don’t think that a referendum pledge would have swung that election : for the Tories, it was more a cunning plot to sort out their own problems rather than about winning over the electorate who, up to that point, didn’t rate it as a particularly salient concern.

      Above all, the idea of ‘honouring’ an indecisive referendum doesn’t really have much force. An honest appraisal would have said simply that there was no majority for a major disruptive change. And – as Attlee pointed out, referendums are beloved of dictators because they are so open to manipulation of sentiment under a cloak of ‘democracy’. They are not to be ‘honoured’ but taken as an advisory mechanism (unless they have thresholds that make them incontrovertible).

      1. Many thanks for replying.

        In theory there is no reason why an Ed Miliband negotiated Leave should be so painful. Part of the reason the Tories have been so bad at it, is that they have not thought up much of a logical strategy and are much more interested in winding the EU up – and thus getting crap back from them. I suspect Ed Miliband would have had a much more mature relationship from the start, and could have also put the case for continued relationships in some areas far better than May or Johnson.

        I certainly think Corbyn and Starmer would have a much more sensible relationship and negotiations with the EU, than the current bunch of idiots in power.

        I do think with the rise of UKIP, and the fact that even Clegg as far back as 2008 (and not forgetting the Referendum Party), that opposition to the EU project has been building for a lot longer than the internal Tory punch up.

        I am not sure of the logic of opposing referendums and then supporting a second one. And we have been here before, voters have voted “the wrong way” on EU related matters elsewhere, and then been given a second go. Any further referendum should be in a generation’s time, and if in the meantime there really is huge clamour for re-joining amongst the population, then the voters have the option of joining Labour (and the Tories) and installing a pro-EU leader and fighting any election on a manifesto to re-join – or voters have the option of returning the Lib Dems to government.

        At the moment attitudes are very entrenched and whatever decision anyone takes will have serious fall out. My fear is that working class heartlands (like the one I am in) ditch Labour – based on conversations I’ve had with workmates, family and friends, if it goes down the Lib Dem path on this one.

      2. We are either governed by Referendum or accept Parliamentary Supremacy, a notion stretching back to 1640 and 1688. When a result in a Referundum clashes with Parliament there is no constitutional solution, as is the case right now. To think the solution lies in another Referendum is folly, it only compounds the fundamental error. Government via Referundums is dangerous; imagine a right wing Tory PM (Boris?) putting questions about immigration, deportations, abortion, capital punishment. He’d be awfully ‘popular’.

    3. Dogpole Thanks for your questions.

      If your work colleagues had known when they voted, that the country would be worse off under Brexit would ALL of them who voted to Leave have still done so? Even the Government’s own figures say that if we leave, the population will be between 4~11% worse off depending upon where you live, the hardest hit being the poorest.

      If we had another vote, each of your colleagues could vote exactly the same way as they did before, no one would force them to change. If they are satisfied, they can stick but if they want to change they can do. Why should they be denied that option? Giving people the right to change their mind if they wish is far more democratic than the alternative. The Brexiters who precipitated the crisis are mainly from the far right. They want to Leave under any circumstances and will be pushing the ‘antidemocratic’ argument for all its worth. Why shouldn’t we oppose them when we know their argument doesn’t hold water?

      It is said that at the moment, now that they have more information, 56% of the electorate would vote to Remain but how do we know for certain if they are not asked? There is absolutely nothing undemocratic about asking people if they have changed their mind once they have seen the goods so to speak, it’s done millions of times every day by Ebay and other web sites, indeed it’s the law. The only people who don’t want you to have that choice are those selling shoddy goods.

      As has been said before, 62% of Scottish voters voted to Remain and as far as I am aware that hasn’t changed. If Scotland go for an independence referendum because of Brexit, they will more than likely leave the UK. In that situation there is little or no chance we will ever get a Labour Government, let alone one led by JC.

      I count myself as being on the firm left of the Labour Party and not 100% in favour of all of the EU’s positions. I recogise there are left wingers who have a genuine beef against the EU but they seem to be unaware of the fact that since we’ve been in the EU we have been involved in and supported 92% of the legislation which has been approved. The Germans are the only other nation who come close. Leaving the EU is like throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

      Finally, many of the young, who overwhelmingly support JC and Remain and who were not of age to vote in the referendum or the election will more than likely refuse to vote Labour if we do not offer another vote or if we propose any form of Brexit. They will simply say you are all the same and not worth voting for.

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