Lib Dems do the Revokey-Cokey: Never Mind The Bar Charts

Welcome to the latest episode of Never Mind The Bar Charts, which takes a look at the news that the Liberal Democrats may run in the general election on a simple ‘revoke Article 50’ platform. Stephen Tall attempts to fisk my Remainer optimism. He possibly fails. Or does he?

Show notes

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13 responses to “Lib Dems do the Revokey-Cokey: Never Mind The Bar Charts”

  1. Yes,Revoke, otherwise the people may take the opportunity to vote the wrong way again.Also stands quite a good chance won’t be duplicated by Labour so big boost to the attractiveness to the Remain field.

  2. I think the public backlash on revoking article 50 without a referendum could be very damaging for the party and lead to brexiteers seeking to start the whole process again. If revocation was at the heart of any referendum it would gain more support from the public. We should be prepared to stand up and use all the evidence to sway the public in favour of scrapping Brexit. If we go into the election on the basis of revoking article 50 alone will it win or lose us votes as it may be looked on as taking the opportunity to speak through a peoples vote away

  3. If revoking article 50 is clear and in our manifesto then the general election becomes like a referendum. If we win then we remain, if we lose but hold the balance of power then we insist that revoking article 50 is one of the choices in a referendum. I see no problem with stating our case that we wish to revoke article 50.

  4. Few people expect us to get an overall majority. We are in effect starting the referendum campaign early. We get to campaign on the merits of remaining rather than just the merits of a referendum.

  5. I have been happy to argue with Leavers and soft Remainers for the last 3 years that we are not the “Lib Undems” and also that majority goverment on 37% of the vote is elective dictatorship. This policy will destroy these core arguments. It needs to be amended to say that we will revoke only if more than 50% vote for Parties that put Revoke in their manifesto.

    • I very much support Andrew’s view here. I could defend a second referendum but can’t defend a ‘revoke’ policy. One of my key motivations in politics has been to reform an electoral system I consider undemocratic – I thought that was the belief of our party – so to say that a Lib Dem majority at a Gen Election would be an ‘unequivocal mandate’ as the motion at conference put it, is quite wrong to me, unless it were achieved with a vote of over 50%. Getting into government with say 38% of the vote, and then seeking to overturn a result voted through by 52% in a referendum, would look and be, appalling.

  6. We need to stop Brexit but we also need to bring the people of this country back together again. If we seek to overturn the referendum result without going back to the people then the resentment will be overwhelming. The referendum was lost because we took people for granted. Revoking Article 50 without a referendum will boost the Brexit Party and Tommy Robinson. Finally as a party we need to start being consistent. We have campaigned since the referendum for a Peoples Vote. It is what we are known for. Changing the brand message every few years simply confuses people and does nothing to promote a core vote.

  7. absolutely, Brian, there is no inconsistency in that, and it just says ‘bollocks to brexit’ in politer terms.,Contrast that with the changing position of the Tories and the ‘who knows what they stand for’ position of Labour.
    I like the slogan our MEPs are using: ‘Reform Europe’, ie get back in there and lead the reform.
    In the event of a hung parliament then our red lines must be a peoples vote and electoral reform.. and perhaps a General Election in 12months time the reformed voting system

  8. I think our proposed policy needs to be restated. I’m not sure if some Lib Dems have fully grasped it.

    We would go into a General Election saying we would Revoke Article 50 if we won the election with an overall majority, as we would have a mandate to do so.

    If we don’t win a General Election, our policy is to continue pressing for a People’s Vote, ie if no one party has an overall majority and we are in a position to negotiate.

  9. This is a risky approach but we live in risky times. One of the mantras of the brexiteers is “get it done”. People are almost universally fed up withe the whole long drawn out process. It is an incontrovertible fact that revoking Article 50 is the only way to get it done in one go – definite and clean. Even a last minute deal would be followed by years of further negotiations and compromises. So-called no deal would be worst of all in triggering off desperate efforts to ameliorate the host of malign consequences combined with seeking some way of carrying on trade with by far our biggest market – again years of negotiation from a very weak position.
    I think the Lib Dems can say – for the last 3 years we have consistently demanded a “people’s vote” to confirm public opinion as soon as the details and consequences of brexit are known. Now a general election has intervened because the collapse of the majority and mandate of the Tory government has made it inevitable. This is now our people’s vote. Put us in power and we will regard that as our mandate to stop this increasingly damaging process in its tracks. By revoking Article 50 we can steady the ship and get on with developing and improving our position within the EU. We can also focus again on the many internal UK issues which are crying out for attention. The Lib Dem manifesto will be rich in constructive policies to that end.

  10. It must be combined with something for those many leavers who feel time is passing them by and opportunities for advancement minimal or none.

  11. I agree that the revoke policy should be clearer, with revoke only happening with an overall majority and a 2nd referendum being the back up plan with any coalition.
    I support a 2nd ref but I hate the phrase “peoples vote” and I think the Lib Dems would do well to stop using it. It is very loaded and effectively dehumanises anybody who does not want a 2nd referendum (or does not realize they want one… yet).
    One more thing, Mark seems like a nice man but sometimes this podcast is made nearly unlistenable by his constant bullish interruptions. The last episode there was so much of both men talking at the same time trying to be heard. Hard to listen to.

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