Brexit Politics: Why is Another Vote Seen as Denying the Will of the Voters?
One argument you see from Trump apologists is that it’s unfair for the ‘Deep State’ to undo the will of the voters. Of course, this abstracts from the fact that as this election was rigged by Russia and by the FBI it doesn’t reflect the will of the voters.
But those who claim that because Trump won an electoral college victory who deserves the powers of an absolute monarch are not defenders of democracy. You can think of the permanent government as reflecting the will of voters-though time.
When you look at the judicial branch a long with the various executive level agencies-the intel agencies, the State Department, Labor, the EPA, etc-yes, many of the bureacrats there weren’t elected by anyone at least not directly.
But the people in these agencies were either appointed by previously elected Presidents or by people appointed themselves by previously elected Presient.
A department like State, for instance, isn’t by design meant to be Donald Trump’s State Department. To be sure, though his term he can appoint more people to State-but his interest in that case seems to be tearing State down piece by piece.
But the State Department-or any similar executive department-represents the will of voters over the last 30-40 years. If you look at a roster of those in the dept. you’ll see appointees of not just Trump, but Obama. W. Bush, Clinton, Bush Sr., Reagan, and even some from Jimmy Carter.
Yes, elections have consequences but not only the most recent Presidential election. But also the 535 other Congressional races and the state and local elections and also the results of elections from previous years.
The belief that electing Trump changes everything on day one was always an illusion. But not only is it not true, that’s a very good thing. I’ll never forget what Michael Kinsley said back in 1988 after Bush Sr. won: democracy goofed.
It was amazing-as this is a big taboo. You’re not supposed to ever suggest the voters were wrong. But he went there.
It seems to me this is part of the genius of our system of government-that democracy from time to time can goof, so you don’t want any one particular election to by itself change everything overnight.
Which is what makes the Brexit saga so weird. Why would the traditionally so cautious brits-who never even overthrew their own monarchy-put the issue of Brexit up for a referendum all things?
Not just a referendum but one that called for just a 50+1 majority. You can argue that such foundational questions should not go up to a simple majority vote-they should at least require a 60% threshold.
Ok, so we’re here now. But why not at least have a second vote? This is treated as somehow betraying the will of the voters. How is a vote by the voters betraying the will of the voters?
In my prevoius post, we looked at the way in which Theresa May seems set to lose her snap election even if she wins it-which based on the tightening polls is no longer a conclusion.
The question is why did May break her word to not have another election until 2020? And how smart does this look now-that she could lose and even if she wins, it won’t be with the mandate she needed?
Well, because, May and her crew are starting to see what a mistake Brexit actually was:
“This is what has changed. Across the last two weeks it has become clear to May’s team that there will have to be an extensive transitional period. As theIrish Times reported, a senior Irish official in close contact with the UK over Brexit said, “I see signs in the contacts that we’re having, both at EU level and with the UK, of a gradual realisation that Brexit in many ways is an act of great self-harm, and that the focus now is on minimising that self-harm’. The only way to do this is with a transition agreement. But the EU have npw told the May government that if this is what the UK wants it is fine by the EU; however, the UK will have to remain within the full legal framework of the EU and this is non-negotiable.”
“In short, what has changed is nothing to do with Westminster, or the balance of power in the UK. It has dawned on the Prime Minister that by the time of a 2020 election, instead of the UK having left the EU with a trading agreement as she dreamt, it will still be paying its dues and paying a large leaving bill and still be under European Court jurisdiction and may still even have to accept free movement. Only by 2022 at best can she hope to have realised her Brexit.”
So it’s a bad idea that no one thought through. Yet no one will consider a revote. Jeremy Corbyn-who now seems to have a real shot at being the UK’s next Prime Minister has taken a revote off the table.
“Jeremy Corbyn has ruled out offering a referendum on an eventual Brexit deal, after a morning of mounting speculation when the Labour leader and his shadow chancellor initially refused to emphatically dismiss the idea of a second poll.”
I don’t get why this is seen as a nonstarter. Democracy can goof. Why is is wrong to give the voters another chance?
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.