George Osborne: Theresa May is a Dead Woman Walking
It’s amazing how the Tories keep doing this to themselves. You know the lawyers’ creed: never ask a question you don’t know the answer to. The Conservatives never thought of applying that to politics-never call a vote you don’t know you will win.
They’ve now called two such votes. The first for Brexit took David Cameron down. He had said he’d leave if Breixt passed and on a very narrow vote it did. Then it was bye bye David Cameron.
One question I’ve had is why can’t the Brits call a do over? Why should a referendum on such a foundational question as EU membership be decided on a bare bones majority and stand for all time? My uncle Paul-who’s a Brit-explained this to me on FB this morning:
“Even though it was supposed to be ‘advisory’, was won by liars, was very close vote and is a very bad choice, such is the power of the Brexit meme that no politician dare ‘go against the will of the people blah blah’ – we have to make the best of it and if it all goes wrong, reapply to join in the future.”
Indeed, even Corbyn who had at first had not ruled out a second vote later did. He was basically the soft Brexit candidate.
So the Brits have decided to learn the hard way.
Then May made the same mistake as Cameron did-called a vote she wrongly thought she could win. She is now clinging to power-at best-and her days seem very numbered:
“Theresa May is a “dead woman walking”, former UK chancellor George Osborne said on Sunday morning, raising speculation that the prime minister’s days in Downing Street are numbered.”
“Mr Osborne, now editor of London’s Evening Standard newspaper, told the BBC “we will know very shortly” whether Mrs May will be able to retain the confidence of Conservative MPs, after her party finished several seats short of a working majority in last week’s general election.”
“His comments came as Sir Michael Fallon, defence secretary, said that senior cabinet ministers had told Mrs May she needed to overhaul her centralised governing style in the aftermath of the election.”
“He added that Mrs May would also need to involve MPs more “both in the conduct of [parliamentary] business and in the development of policy”.
“Fiona Hill and Nick Timothy, Mrs May’s co-chiefs of staff, resigned on Saturday after senior Tory MPs told the prime minister she would have to sack them if she wanted to continue as leader.”
“The pair were seen as emblematic of Mrs May’s secretive and closed style of government and their removal was viewed by cabinet ministers and Tory MPs as a litmus test of whether the prime minister was willing to change.”
May’s very arrogant style of government will have to change. Certainly her position vs a vs the EU is now weakened for Brexit negotiations.
And she’s not even out of the woods yet in putting together her minority government:
“But Mrs May came under fresh scrutiny on Sunday morning after Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist party denied it had finalised an agreement to support the Conservatives in the UK parliament, just hours after Downing Street said it had struck a deal.”
“No 10 said late on Saturday that the DUP’s 10 MPs, combined with the Conservatives’ 318, would give the government more than the 326 representatives needed for an absolute majority.”
But hours later, the DUP said no deal had been reached and discussions would continue next week. “The talks so far have been positive,” the DUP said.
“Sky News reported that Downing Street had announced a deal in error by sending out the wrong statement.”
“Downing Street later issued an apparent clarification, saying Mrs May had spoken with the DUP on Saturday night to “discuss finalising a confidence and supply deal when parliament returns next week”.
Osborne had this to say about May’s tough talk on Brexit-no deal is better than a bad deal.
“But Mr Osborne, who was sacked as chancellor by Mrs May after she became prime minister last summer, said her oft-repeated negotiating position that “no deal” would be better than a “bad deal” was implausible as the DUP would not accept it.”
“The DUP is keen to preserve Northern Ireland’s “soft” border with the Republic of Ireland and Arlene Foster, the party’s leader, has said she would oppose a “hard” Brexit.”
“Mr Osborne said there was no parliamentary majority for a hard Brexit. Instead the UK could remain part of the European Economic Area, including the EU single market, as “a holding position, perhaps for a very long period of time”.
“John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, told ITV on Sunday that remaining in the single market would not respect the result of the EU referendum.”
Again with this respecting the result of the EU referendum canard that my uncle talked about. Where a bare bones majority on an advisory referendum means a hard Brexit, no questions asked and no second vote.
Evidently, Britain must learn the hard way what a bad vote that was.
Another commentator on my uncle’s FB responded to my questions on Britain and the Brexit by arguing that he’d rather take Brexit than Trump. I’d rather take neither.
And, as I pointed out, we’re going to get rid of Trump-impeachment is coming. And even if he isn’t, he won’t be forever. Brexit seems to be forever.
Simon Wren-Lewis has an interesting piece about how while there has been massive US resistance to Trump, Brexit hasn’t been resisted-at least not head on.
True, Corbyn’s win can be seen as something of an implicit protest of Brexit-he was the soft Brexit candidate. But not explicit.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
There is nothing more important in getting answers to Trump-Russia collusion than a Democratic House in 2019. Please donate to help me in my part of the effort to fight for a Dem House.
Thank you. We must have a Dem House. And so, we will.