I am disappointed by the Guardian’s editorial position over the aftermath of the referendum. It has effectively thrown in the towel and accepted Theresa May’s “Brexit means Brexit” line. Here is an extract from today’s leader:
Almost half of those who voted sought to continue our membership. The Guardian was one of the most determined voices on this side of the divide. But we, like the rest of the 48%, must now respect the verdict that we dreaded. You assumed that British pragmatism would triumph….
…we need time. Britain voted against membership; we did not vote for an alternative. The public has not fully confronted the choice it faces between turning its back on the single market, or accepting continued EU migration in whatever form.
This effectively leaves the 4,109,592 people (many of them Guardian readers) who have signed the parliamentary petition for a new referendum without a voice in mainstream media.
We can respect the vote but it is not binding on parliament or the prime minister, whichever has to decide. The decision is a sovereign one and it has not been made yet as David Cameron has kicked the can down the road to his successor.
Nick Clegg has called for an election before Article 50 is triggered in an article for the Guardian today.
On another page, the paper reports an anonymous group of clients has instructed solicitors at Mishcon de Reya to try to ensure article 50 is not triggered without an act of parliament. It reports:
One of the grounds of a likely challenge to the referendum is that it is merely advisory and the royal prerogative cannot be used to undermine parliamentary statute.
Another legal challenge is being crowdfunded. It very quickly hit its target and is not accepting further money at the moment.
Tony Blair also weighed in yesterday suggesting the will of the people could change. This is the Sun’s view:
REMINIAC SNEERING Tony Blair sparked fury yesterday by hinting Britain should be allowed a second Referendum because people are entitled to change their minds.
Ten days after the referendum there is a growing realisation that the alternative of remaining in the EU is a viable option. The decision on triggering Article 50 has not been made and if parliament is truly sovereign it may never be made.
The Guardian has called this one too early.