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AIBU as a remainer to think a 2nd ref would obliterate political trust?

(111 Posts)
Lfoxbar Wed 27-Mar-19 12:11:47

How can the government disobey the instruction of the electorate? Surely it would not only destroy trust but also set a nasty precedent. Aibu to ask how a 2nd referendum could ever be justified?

Pa1oma Wed 27-Mar-19 12:16:49

Of course it can.

If that was a general election, it would have been a hung Parliament.

Nobody factored in the Northern Irelsnd situation in 2016. People were manipulated by lies and racist propaganda..

Public opinion has now changed.

Hopefully there is still time for common sense to win over bigotry and xenophobia. Surely this should be the aim of any democracy?

bumbleymummy Wed 27-Mar-19 12:18:01


GoosetheCat Wed 27-Mar-19 12:18:53

To be honest I don't think there is such a thing as political trust anymore. It's all been such a shit show.

Gth1234 Wed 27-Mar-19 12:19:19

There is no trust in politicians to obliterate. Most of them are devious and dissembling.

cardibach Wed 27-Mar-19 12:21:39

YANBU to think whatever you like. YABU to assume you are correct or anyone else should agree. Even prominent Brexiters have said a second referendum on the deal would be a good idea. Read this Independent article

Redorangeyellowgreen Wed 27-Mar-19 12:21:59

I used to feel the same OP but I'm starting to change my mind. I think we need to find a way out of this situation.

However, comments like this really worry me:

Hopefully there is still time for common sense to win over bigotry and xenophobia. Surely this should be the aim of any democracy?

Writing off the views of the millions who voted leave the first time around as bigotry and xenophobia is so patronising and rude. I think this attitude will anger people and we will just end up with another vote to leave.

Alsohuman Wed 27-Mar-19 12:22:44

You don’t have one general election and then keep the government it elects for all time. Every now and then you have another to check the electorate is still happy, that’s democracy. Why wouldn’t the same apply to the most significant event to affect the country since 1945?

Seniorschoolmum Wed 27-Mar-19 12:23:20

I can see two problems
1. Even though the referendum wasn’t legally binding, once it was held, there was never much option to ignore the result. Destruction of trust would take generations to heal.
2. People assume if it was rerun, the result would be to remain. I’m not so sure. And if a 2nd referendum gave the option for no-deal, I’d be very concerned that would be the people’s choice.
People in one area of the UK simply don’t see political views in other parts of the country. For or Against.
I work in a hi-tech company where the average age is below 40. Yet 80% of employees say they voted to leave. (which might be different from how they really voted.)
So predicting the result now that people are heartily sick of the subject is very difficult.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Wed 27-Mar-19 12:24:50

Bloke goes into a bar and say "I want a beer and gin and tonic for Mrs Bloke" (who has wandered off to powder her nose)

Simple order you might think

So, would you like Gordons, Henricks, Silent Pool, Slake, Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray or Beefeaters?
What flavour would you like? violet? raspberry? rhubarb? ginger? unicorn tears (yes its a thing), plain sloe, shiraz
Tonic with that? ? diet? schweppes? fever tree? what flavour?
lemon ?

So you see "Gin and Tonic" isnt simple. Neither is 'Brexit means Brexit because no one knows what that means at all and 'Leave means leave' is just another dollop of rhetoric. No one knows what leave means.

I think your question should be changed from How can the government disobey the instruction of the electorate? to something like how can poiticians lie, deceive, cheat and misrepresent so badly, then dither in circles for three years

yiskasha Wed 27-Mar-19 12:25:05

Is there any "political trust" left to be obliterated?

cardibach Wed 27-Mar-19 12:25:24

Oh, and also, I’m not sure it is ‘disobeying the electorate’. We are a representative democracy, so people elect someone to represent their be#sy interests, not to vote as delegates. There has been a general election since the referendum, and the population returned a group of politicians who are largely remain. We could argue they did this for a reason...

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Wed 27-Mar-19 12:26:59

PS - I see that pair of shits Johnson and Mogg are now backing Mays deal .

StroppyWoman Wed 27-Mar-19 12:27:42

If it were legally binding it would have been declared invalid, so following it is making a travesty of the democratic process.
No, it does not obliterate public trust to pose a specific set of options for the population to vote on.
Not that I think anyone trusts them anymore.

bigKiteFlying Wed 27-Mar-19 12:27:48

Polling data does seem to suggest there been shifts to more remaining.

The leave campaign has been found to breach electrical law

And what people meant by leave – soft/hard or any possible variation has been up for debate since the result.

The logical conclusion of the argument we've already voted is that once we elect a government that should be it for all time - as what the people want never changes.

However, I'm not sure a second referendum would automatically be great either so much would depend on what’s asked and turn out figures – more than two option could mean splitting no or yes votes.

Still if MP can’t find a compromise to go forward and can't bring themsleves to revoke article 50 – it’s surely the next step.

BlackSatinDancer Wed 27-Mar-19 12:28:39

YANBU. OP - you are spot on. It would be the downfall of democracy and many would never vote again.

onalongsabbatical Wed 27-Mar-19 12:28:43

There's no trust, especially among the 16 million remainers. So don't have a ref and continue the shit show, or have a ref (win - LOL) and rebuild the trust of the 16 mill and use the political momentum to work on the conditions that caused the ref in the first place. Let the Tory party destroy itself. There are no easy solutions to any of this but having a ref is not inherently worse than enacting Brexit. Whereas enacting Brexit is pretty much the worst of all options. IMHO.

GCAcademic Wed 27-Mar-19 12:29:12

There is already a thread on this:

implantsandaDyson Wed 27-Mar-19 12:30:03

Oh I think trust in the government, in fact most politicians is shot to shit now. But I agree with RedOrange.......... I would be frightened that a further referendum would lead to a bigger Leave vote. I know that certain political parties in NI would have every eligible voter out voting for a Leave vote. It would be, sorry for the ill advised phrase - a call to arms to strengthen the Union and every other tribal platitude you could think of and on the other hand I know quite a lot of voters in NI who voted Leave to push for a United Ireland poll. I think those numbers would grow too. So NI may be small overall in voter numbers but I don't think as a whole it would vote Remain again.
I think in the case of a second Referndum the phrase "be careful what you wish for" could be very apt.

Youseethethingis Wed 27-Mar-19 12:30:04

I think if we are going to keep comparing referendums to general elections then we should hold a referendum every five years “just to check” and neither leave nor remain a part of the EU, but continue to go round and round in circles until the end of time itself.

PerkingFaintly Wed 27-Mar-19 12:31:01

Thanks for joining MN to post that, Lfoxbar.

IMHO, any further referendum should be on a slightly different question.

It should set out options that have been developed for leaving, and options for remaining, and it be single transferable vote rather than first past the post.

That would allow people to positively vote For the version of leave they want rather than merely Against remain. If their favourite version of leave is in a minority, their vote gets transferred to their second favourite, and so on.

Or eg people who originally voted hoping for a Norway type arrangement (as promoted by some leavers) but would prefer to remain than crash out with No Deal, could put remain as their second.

Actually this should have been the arrangement from the beginning. Because there are radically different versions of leave, so lots of people were ALWAYS going to feel unhappy.

SeeYouLaterUserData Wed 27-Mar-19 12:31:06

Maybe read the Electoral Commission's report on illegality of the first referendum? Oh I see Dominic Cummings has just this morning been ruled as in contempt of Parliament too. Do we need to talk about the red bus thing again too? How about the dark ads on Facebook because harnessing social media with hatred and division was a core policy used by the "Grand Wizards" championing their racist campaigns hmm That was the nasty precedent.

Also, the will of the people is to remain so there's that:

Top tip: I see a few "As a Remainer I think <insert your favourite Leave trope here>" type threads on social media over the last 48hours. Not suggesting you're a troll because that goes against MN rules, but you might want to watch that wink shock grin

Lfoxbar Wed 27-Mar-19 12:36:22

What incentive is there to vote again? It'll just be ignored if it isn't the result they want.

Getting very sick of the patronising that takes place the 2nd someone offers a contrasting opinion.

Sooverthemill Wed 27-Mar-19 12:37:12

It was advisory so the Government could have ignored it at the time. Voters change their minds that's why sometimes a Tory Government is elected, sometimes Labour and sometimes it's a hung Parliament. The referendum was almost 3 years ago and it has become clear even to some who voted leave that the Government did not prepare for a leave vote and the 2 years of preparation still hasn't given the UK a clear way out which makes the country better off. In simple terms of standing alone leaving now would achithat but in terms of economic and social outcomes, free trade and so many other necessities the Government hasn't managed to negotiate a deal that Parliament is happy with. It's reasonably clear that a large section of the population isn't happy either. Holding another referendum would make it clear whether the electorate is happy to leave at any cost or now that the cost is known, they would like a different outcome. I believe this is the way a democratic nation should act. Switzerland holds referenda all the time and it's a system that works if you are clear what what people are voting on rathervthan vague.

crumpet Wed 27-Mar-19 12:39:38

I find the argument that a second referendum would be undemocratic utterly bizarre.

The first referendum was about a concept - in or out, but with no concrete details as to what “out” would mean. Now there is flesh (well, once parliament finishes the shenanigans) around the concept: “this is what out will look like” so it’s entirely reasonable to ask for confirmation that the finalised “out” is still what people would like to do.

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