by Jackie Porter on 30 May, 2017
I have received some letters asking why ‘Remain’ voters should opt for me as the Lib Dem candidate in this election. I am publishing my reply as it may be of interest to others…
Like you, I voted remain and at 5am in the Guildhall count I was jubilant that Winchester’s residents had voted to remain too. Later I discovered that the whole constituency had voted to remain.
The euphoria in the room was dampened as it became apparent that the country as a whole had voted ‘out’.
We went home at dawn with heavy hearts.
My heart was heavy again when our MP voted with the Government to trigger the Article 50 negotiations, to take us out of the EU.
Liberal Democrats accept the democratic view- that the vote was to leave, but we firmly believe that no one knew at that time what they were voting for exactly. Lies were told, unreasonable promises made and the true cost of leaving wasn’t clear.
In simple terms, the public had ‘bought a ticket’ to go, but was the ‘ticket’ to Paris or Siberia?
We do not accept that Mrs May and her cabinet will be the ones to decide the terms of that exit.
Lib Dems say that when the terms are known, the country should decide if the terms are good enough to leave (and we do believe in single market) or if the terms are not good enough, the public could reject the deal. We are proposing the principle of a referendum on the terms of the deal.
You say there may be more important issues to address: but at this moment, this is the difference between the two candidates.
The result of the negotiations are critical to young people’s future. I hope that in light of the economic and political uncertainty this negotiation will bring, and the increasing interest of young people in this, that in two or so years’ time, the stronger voice of young people will give us a second chance to vote on this, hopefully with a successful conclusion.
If there are enough Liberal Democrat MP’s in parliament then we can take others in other parties with us to press for this outcome, not as a coalition but voting together issue by issue to achieve a good deal for Britain’s place in the EU. I want to be one of those MP’s.
You ask what difference can I make?
I know our current MP clearly continually votes with Government ; we have no chance to change his view.
The Lib Dems manifesto is at www.libdems.org.uk/manifesto
It covers many things, but our views on Europe are stated clearly there too.Leave a comment