Why I support the idea of a 2nd Referendum, even though the very idea makes my skin crawl.

On Thursday, a majority of the people in Britain who were both eligible to vote and voted took the decision that the UK should leave the European Union. We live in a democracy, which is a beautiful thing, and enjoy (almost) universal suffrage, which I certainly don’t take for granted. So normally, that would be that. Decision made, let’s get on and make the best of it. Why, then, am I one of the millions of Britains seeking to challenge the outcome of that referendum? Why do I think that the ballot should be re-run? And how, perhaps most crucially, do I believe that can possibly be justified in a democratic society.

A Fraudulent Campaign.

For a long time in the campaign leading up to the referendum, the remain campaign pointed out that many of the leave campaigns claims were either based on questionable evidence or simply untrue. We now know this to be true.

We have seen the economic impacts just in these first few hours and days. Leading leave campaigners have themselves admitted that they lied about funding for the NHS and about being able to reduce immigration. They are also now desperately trying to delay leaving the EU to give them time to sort out their own mess.

This brings me to these points:

1. Voters were lied to. This, I believe, is fraud and it is my firm opinion that members of the leave campaign should face criminal charges for it.

2. A significant number of people who voted leave are not going to get in reality what they thought they were voting for.

What do you mean my vote actually counts?

I can honestly scarcely believe I’m having to say this, but it seems that many people didn’t understand that in a referendum votes are simply added up and counted. What this means is that, unlike in many areas of the UK in a general election, your vote actually counts equally with everyone else’s.

Shocking I know.

Well, not really. But apparently many people were.

Before I take this point any further, if you voted to leave the EU and now wish you could change your mind; I have no sympathy for you at all. You should have taken the time to understand what you were doing.

That said, now that you do realise quite how important this is and how our system of democracy actually works, I think it’s only fair that you should be given another chance if you want one.

And finally, the impact.

I think we can tell, just take a look at social media or the TV news, that this issue has completely divided public opinion. That’s fantastic. For once, people of all ages are interested in and talking about the political and democratic process.

The impact of a decision – whatever it is – about the future place of our country in Europe and in the world is immense. We’ve experienced a taste of that over the last 48 hours.

The British public has finally, albeit not in the way anyone would have wanted, woken up to the facts of this situation, I believe that the best, safest, fairest and most democratic option we can take as a country right now is to use this opportunity. We can give everyone the chance to have a free, open and honest public debate about all of the issues.

Then, in a few weeks, have one more vote to decide the issue finally once and for all. A vote where everyone understands the issues, and the potential impacts and effects. A ballot where everyone realises that their vote really will count.

And a referendum after which everyone, for those very reasons, will be able to accept the final result. Whatever it might turn out to be.

Sign the Petition

If you live in the UK, you can sign a petition to ask the UK Government to hold a 2nd Referendum by clicking on this link: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/131215.

4 thoughts on “Why I support the idea of a 2nd Referendum, even though the very idea makes my skin crawl.

  1. So you like democracy but not when the result suits to. Well, my parents’ generation were lied to in 1975 that the EEC was nothing more than a Common Market, when all along it was the stepping stone to a political union. Left-wing Labour MP Peter Shore warned the electorate but not enough were willing to listen to him:

    1. Thank you for your comment. I disagree – as I’m sure you expected – but thank you all the same. I’m also not sure quite how you think a speech from the 1970’s is relevant?
      I can accept that your parents might feel that they should have been given an earlier opportunity to voice their concerns about the change from a purely economic union to a more wide-ranging one. However what I cannot forgive is that they seem to have put this personal viewpoint of theirs above the broader national interests of ensuring a stronger economy and better future for young people.
      All of that aside, however, because none of it is what this article is about. When we have a fair and equitable vote, which I don’t believe this was, then I will feel able to accept the outcome. If I felt that this referendum had been fair and equitable then I would still be disappointed, of course I would, but this is a different set of issues altogether.

      1. It is very relevant because if the 1975 referendum had been about membership of a political union, then the likelihood is that most people would have voted out. As it is, this referendum has been fair and equitable because it is [TEXT DELETED BY MODERATOR] It strikes me that those signing the petition, even if they are bona fide voters on the electoral register, refuse to recognise that. They are the unwitting tools of the corporate elites.

        EDITED BY MODERATOR: Elements of this comment have been deleted as they were factually inaccurate.

        1. You’re entitled to state your opinion of course, however you can’t post anything on this site that is untrue. Your comment has been edited to reflect this.

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