Update 6th December: There has been a dark response by Raab and Leadsom to the events of the 4th. We are literally watching our own government trying to thwart the processes of democracy in this country. Ian Dunt (once again) explains here.
I am writing this on the 5th December 2018. Yesterday was a turning point and (I am not saying this lightly) a truly historic day. The day was so profound that I can not do it justice with my limited knowledge and writing skills but I have found some reporting gems which are too good not to share. I felt like I was reading and listening to archives of the future going through them.
First of all, going back a step to the draft Withdrawal Arrangement (W.A.) and what is going to happen next week. The W.A. is going to be debated in Parliament next week and either passed or rejected. Professor Michael Dougan gives a summary and analysis of the arrangement in this video and it is well worth a listen.
Yesterday Theresa May’s government was found to be in contempt of Parliament.
This is the first time in British History that this has happened. Theresa May’s government did not want to share the Attorney General’s full legal analysis of the W.A. prior to the vote next week. Keir Starmer wrote the motion stating that the Government, by not sharing the full legal analysis with Parliament, was in contempt of parliament and this motion was voted through 311 to 293.
As if that was not enough, Dominic Grieve’s motion against the government was also voted through. This is the one that will hopefully be a bit of a sleeping pill for many of us. (I am not alone in being incredibly worried about a No Deal and the fact that the hard Brexiters are promoting a No Deal as being better than a bad deal. This is not true. People’s lives will be at risk in the event of a No Deal but people could be persuaded to vote for it if they do not bother to read beyond the head lines and rhetoric).
What was Dominic Grieve’s motion? He said that if the W.A. is voted down, then Parliament should have a genuinely meaningful vote on the future of Brexit….the government has been saying it is either the W.A. or No Deal using the No Deal as a threat (to make M.P.s vote for the unpopular W.A.) Dominic Grieve (and the supporting M.P.s) have stopped this manipulation. If the W.A. gets voted down, Parliament will be able to have genuine input into the future outcome and there would be no majority for a No Deal. (This is also supported by the fact that this week we are more secure in the knowledge that Article 50 could be unilaterally rescinded and the EU would support an extension for a people’s Vote).
Do you see what I mean about he sleeping pill?
(Please note that Hilary Benn had a similar motion to Dominic Grieve which is explained better than I can in the links below).
On a local level, Cornwall County Council voted in favour of supporting a People’s Vote. We were gifted with some great tweets yesterday from Cornwall for Europe. Another bit of good news and well done to all the local campaigners.
1) If you only read one link, I recommend this one by Ian Dunt:
2) Background on the technicals of the votes yesterday again by ian Dunt:
3) Fabulous speeches in Parliament by Margaret Beckett, Anna Soubrey, Hilary Benn (from 20:46:15)
4) Good explanation of what happened yesterday in the Independent:
5) Ian Dunt’s spectacular thread as the debates unravelled – you really get a sense of the drama as it unfolded mixed in with a bit of necessary alcohol as the day wore on!
6) If you need reminding about the reality of a No deal, then Jason Hunter is your man. (Here’s the link to episode 1 but I also recommend episodes 4 & 7)….and Sarah Adkins is your woman who spoke live on Radio Cornwall yesterday.
7) Chris Grey’s blogspot is an easily digestible analysis of what could happen (written last Friday before yesterday’s vote)