London, United Kingdom. The British Cameron (pig boy) government arranged to hold a referendum on membership in the European Union in June 2016, and the Theresa May government has scheduled a general election in June 2017.
Brexit negotiations with the European Union as the central issue for the June election is key to the political strategy of the Conservative Party. The same holds for the Scottish National Party, whose astute leader is using Scotland’s relationship with Europe as the vehicle by which to revive and re-run the independence referendum that failed in 2014 by 44 to 55%.
Convincing the UK public that the so-called divorce negotiations are the election’s central issue is to portray those negotiations as extremely complex and fraught with economic danger.
Given this complexity and associated dangers, the nation requires a strong leader supported by a large parliamentary majority. The Conservative Party, we are repeatedly told, provides the leader we need in these perilous times. Our Prime Minister and her party stand in bold contrast to the bumbling, chaotic Labour Party and its bicycle riding leader.
The political position of, “Focus on Brexit and leave it to Theresa” relies on the public accepting that negotiations will, in fact, prove complex and laden with peril for the British population.
To believe the credibility of this narrative, “focus on Brexit and leave it to Theresa”, relies on the public accepting what gives it credibility, that negotiations will, in fact, prove complex and laden with peril for the British population. The Labour Party finds itself in the unfortunate dilemma of seeking to refute this narrative while having contributed to the credibility of the “complex and dangerous negotiations” part.
The UK Conservatives, or the anti-Corbyn wing of the party views the European Union first and foremost as a trading and investment group, being especially enthusiastic about the EU’s neoliberal Four Freedoms: “free movement” of goods, capital and workers, plus “freedom” to compete for provision of public services.
The Corbyn wing of the party also stresses the complexity of negotiations, emphasising the need to protect employment, civil and human rights as specified in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
Brexit lite in 2017 is unlikely to attract voters any more than the austerity lite of the two Eds (Miliband and Balls) did in 2015. Cameron and Osborne set the deficit trap and the Eds consciously fell into it.
Rather than give credibility to the budget balancing ideology by promising to achieve it slower and more equitably, the Eds should have denounced it as nonsense and proposed a rational, progressive fiscal policy in its place.
The equivalent “cut to the chase” approach to Brexit involves clearing away the rhetorical fog: 1) it is in the interest of EU governments and businesses to reach an amicable settlement; 2) the negotiations involve simple, straight-forward steps; and 3) the final settlement can allow for Britain access to the single market and limitations on immigrations.
Leaving the European Union is a serious and historic opportunity to get out while the getting is good. English and Welsh voters made that wise choice last year. This election is becomming a re-run of the Brexit referendum. Rather, it offers another historic opportunity, for voters in the four nations to choose a Britain first policy for 21st century Britain.
Tags: Brexit; Brexit 'deal or no deal'; Brexit negotiations; Brexit UK; British Conservative Party; David Cameron; post-Brexit; Ruth Davidson; Theresa May; UK elections; UK elections 2017; United Kingdom