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There's been a lot of positive reaction to the LD move. The main argument against it, is that a GE is not the way to settle Brexit. A PV, it is said, would be better. Here's a thread on that question; and I'll be trying my best to be fair to the PV argument. 1/
The GE does, I accept, have a number of flaws. An overall majority could be won with 30-35% of the vote. Issues other than Brexit will be, at ought to be, at stake. Still... a GE does allow parties to make a new Brexit pitch, and to unblock the Parliamentary impasse. 2/
If Johnson wins, he will seek to implement his version of Brexit. He wants to get it done. If all the opposition can offer is uncertainty and delay, I do not think that will play well. Surely they can make the case - directly - for their preferred Brexit outcome. 3/
And if they are convinced that remain is the best outcome (a view shared by above 50% of the electorate, according to the polls), they can campaign to revoke. 4/
But what of the PV. Would that not enable a 'cleaner' resolution, with minds focused squarely on Brexit? Would it not be a better way to settle things? Would revocation post a PV be an outcome to which leavers would be more easily reconciled? 5/
I can't see how it can meet the aspirations of those who support it. The main issue is the question. In a PV, remain will be pitted against one or more concrete versions of leave, in order to determine Brexit. 6/
The obvious candidates for any PV are 'a deal' and/or 'no deal'. Each is much more problematic that it might at first sight appear. Let me start with 'a deal'. 7/
The obvious question is 'what deal'. One answer is the WA (and PD). But both Johnson and Corbyn say that they want to renegotiate the deal. In order for there to be a deal option, a mechanism must be found for agreeing what 'the deal' is to be. 8/
Next, 'no deal'. A focus of the last weeks has been the attempt to take no deal off the table. It would be rather strange to agree to offer no deal in any PV. 9/
In any case, what is no deal? If we were to vote to leave with no deal, what would the Govt (not) be able to do the day after exit. What sort of deals could be struck with the EU? Would eg a WA be permissible? 10/
So... there are big issues with the PV. Even if were possible to agree on a deal choice, and on the inclusion of no deal, many Brexiters (eg supporters of any different deal) would be disenfranchised. 11/
And if no deal were, as surely likely, to be excluded, the Brexiters would (with some justification) claim that this was an establishment stitch-up, pitting 'no Brexit' against 'no Brexit'. 12/
So... (and to sum up) I applaud the LDs revoke stance. The alternative pitch - to argue for a PV - means delay and 'more Brexit'. And a PV does not, contrary to the views of many, provide a durable solution. 13/13
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