Quite worried about the Liberal Democrats enabling no-deal
— Mike Hind (@MikeH_PR) August 14, 2019
So he should be. This is what happens when you elect a Tory-supporting quisling to be leader of the Liberal Democrats.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has written a letter to the leaders of opposition parties including the SNP, Lib Dems, and Plaid Cymru, along with prominent Conservatives who oppose Boris Johnson’s “no-deal” Brexit.
In it, he proposes that they support his plan for an early vote of “no confidence” in September, allowing him to set up a short-term government to block Brexit under the terms preferred by Mr Johnson and call a general election.
And the Liberal Democrats under Jo Swinson have rejected it, for unsupportable reasons. This is a betrayal of everybody who voted for them in the belief that they oppose Brexit.
Here’s Mr Corbyn’s letter:
I've written to the leaders of other political parties and senior backbenchers from across Parliament to lay out my plan to stop a disastrous No Deal Brexit and let the people decide the future of our country. pic.twitter.com/Jz1MjXCrqk
— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) August 14, 2019
And here’s the Liberal Democrat reply, as given by Chuka Umunna on the BBC’s Newsnight. I doubt anyone would disagree with Liam Young’s comment now:
And so it was true: they never wanted to stop Brexit, they only wanted to stop Corbyn. pic.twitter.com/uX3UqVn37g
— Liam Young (@liamyoung) August 14, 2019
“And there you have it from the chameleons mouth,” wrote Rachael Swindon on Twitter. “The Lib Dims would rather a Boris Johnson No Deal Brexit and a hard-right Government than a temporary Corbyn-led Government to seek an extension to Article 50 and a general election. Unforgivable.”
She later added: “I know we used to laugh about the Lib Dims preferring a No Deal Brexit and a Johnson Government to a Corbyn-led Government. Surely they’re not *that* silly? Tonight, live on Newsnight, the Lib Dims just died.”
Mr Umunna, of course, has a vested interest in putting off any general election; he would instantly lose his seat in the House of Commons to a Labour candidate.
Of course the LibDems won't admit it, but when Swinson says "some MPs won't support a Corbyn Govt" what they mean is, Sarah Woolaston & Chuka Umunna won't because they'd rather have a Boris No Deal than a General Election in which they'd definitely lose their seat.
— Matt Thomas #GrassrootsVoice (@Trickyjabs) August 14, 2019
Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson, who supported the Tories throughout the Coalition government and seems determined to support them now, is quoted by Politics Home as saying: “Jeremy Corbyn is not the person who is going to be able to build an even temporary majority in the House of Commons for this task – I would expect there are people in his own party and indeed the necessary Conservative backbenchers who would be unwilling to support him. It is a nonsense.”
Ms Swinson added: “This letter is just more red lines that are about him and his position and is not a serious attempt to find the right solution and build a consensus to stop a no-deal Brexit.”
This is building castles in the air. Ms Swinson does not know the way the Commons’ 639 (voting) MPs will go, of a “no confidence” vote is put before them. She is simply trying to protect Boris Johnson.
Labour MP Emma Hardy put it succinctly: “Lib Dems siding with the Tories instead of Labour. Same old, same old. Yellow Tories.”
The SNP has been much more pragmatic. Consider its response, also on Newsnight:
.@Emmabarnett: Do you have a problem putting Jeremy Corbyn in Number 10?
— BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight) August 14, 2019
Here are the simple facts:
Centrist meltdown over Corbyn's plans to prevent catastrophic no-deal #brexit. He's the leader of the opposition and if they don't support his caretaker gov't plan with #GeneralElection and #peoplesvote with remain as an option they get no deal.
Which do they hate more?
— Jason O'Rourke (@jasonoruairc) August 14, 2019
And this is the dilemma for people like the Lib Dems (and the Change UK mob, whatever they’re calling themselves now):
Can MPs stop No Deal? Yeah, easy. Can they stop No Deal while also stopping Corbyn, boosting their own parties & factions, advancing their careers, & refusing to compromise with one another on anything whatever? Doubt it. All comes down to priorities really
— Edmund Griffiths (@EdmundGriffiths) August 14, 2019
Yes indeed – and the Lib Dems’ priorities will be plain to see, as a result of Mr Corbyn’s letter:
Not only has J. Corbyn seen off two (soon to be three) Tory Prime Ministers, he has skewered every so-called centrist tonight as their faux concern over no deal will be out there for all to see if they do not back this plan to stop it.
— Tory Racism (@toryracism) August 14, 2019
As Owen Jones stated: “Labour won 40% of the vote two years ago, nearly the same vote share as the government; its leader is twice elected. A temporary government should be led by the politician with the biggest democratic mandate. Do you oppose Corbyn as PM more than No Deal? Really?”
It should be worth reminding you that, if a “no deal” Brexit happens, the next thing Mr Johnson will do is sell off the NHS and abandon your rights as workers and as human beings, along with your consumer rights and environmental protections, in a trade deal with the United States that won’t bring any improvement to the UK economy for 15 long years, if at all. That is what Jo Swinson, Chuka Umunna and the other Liberal DemocRats are supporting.
Do you support that?
If not, you’d better do something about it.
I would suggest contacting your MP at your earliest opportunity and telling them you want them to support Mr Corbyn’s proposal – in the national interest.
You may need to contact them more than once as some MPs may be reluctant to change their own position. Make it clear that this is a matter on which they may lose their job in the future, if they don’t do the right thing.
Or would you rather sit this one out and let your country drift further into fascism?
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