Brexit supporting press in a panic

Interesting that, today, there are simultaneous attacks on me in the Telegraph, the Sun and the Express, all about amendments I tabled weeks ago to a draft report by Liberal MEP Verhofstadt in the Constitutional Affairs committee of the European Parliament.

It’s clearly a concerted effort, especially as they all give the same distorted view of what I was trying to do, and for good measure throw in a quote by that well known stalwart of inaccuracy, Iain Duncan Smith, who recently referred to Mr Verhofstadt as “unelected” and refers to this report as “legislation”, which it isn’t.

For the record, let me state that my amendments sought to do two main things.

First, was to ensure legal accuracy (this is, after all, a report for the constitutional committee). The formal “decision” to leave the EU has to be taken by the British parliament, as confirmed by the High Court. Legally, the referendum did not take that decision as it was formally advisory.

Second, I assert that the EU should respect the will of the British people and “should not stand in the way of any reconsideration by the UK of its intended departure”. The EU should not – and anyway cannot – force Britain to reconsider, but it equally should not prevent any such reconsideration. If Britain did change its mind, they should respect that and not throw us out by claiming that Article 50 is irreversible.

Now, those who criticise me for this are effectively saying that even contemplating the possibility that Britain might change its mind is unacceptable. “Sabotage” says the Sun. “Betrayal” cries the Telegraph. “Sneaky wrecking tactics” says the Express.

Quite how amendments to an EP committee report looking at future options for Europe could somehow interfere with internal British procedures is, of course, not explained.

But it IS clearly an indication of how fearful the Brexit camp have become over the idea that people may demand their rights to reconsider.

They are alarmed that, as the cost of Brexit emerges, people who voted Leave might say, “hang on a minute, we were told this would save us money (which would go to the NHS), not cost us an arm and a leg”.

They are clearly in a panic!

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21 Comments

  1. Somebody needs to spell this out and keep on spelling it out. Brexit is too serious a matter for serious reservations to be blocked or ridiculed by such a large proportion of our popular press. So please keep on speaking up.
    If the Leavers had a water tight case they would not need to resort to these wild tactics. Remainers need to be firm and resolute, sticking to the facts as they emerge and repeating the truth again and again.

  2. Good work.

    I agree that as time goes by and the cost of any Brexit becomes more and more apparent, the public will be less likely to support it. It’s a thorny problem for the UK’s MPs: when the time comes to vote on Brexit not only they will have to be in touch with the views of their constituents but they will also have to weigh the impact of Brexit on the UK.

  3. You are doing great job, keep it up, you’re one of the most clear-headed, straight forward MP’s . Ignore the rabid right wing press!

  4. If only all our MEPs were like Richard Corbett, who is not my MEP, but does an excellent job representing Britain’s real interests.

    Thanks for the clarification.

  5. Your gravy train is coming to an end.
    Get your nose out of the trough and find a real job, along with all your other anti-democratic colleagues who fail to accept the will of the British people.

    • British people? do you also include the Scots and Northern Irish who voted overwhelmingly to remain. Or do you mean the zenophobic English people. Maybe it is time for the dissolution of the Union so that you can be ,masters of your English destiny. Good luck, Maggie squandered your inheritance!!

  6. British people are delusional. There is no revocation provision in Article 50, nor could there ever be one. Law is not firmed on revocable conditions, it would become meaningless.

    I hope the UK triggers Article 50 soon to put an end to all this wishful thinking.

    • “British people are delusional.”

      Oh dear. We are lectured with monotonous regularity that the British “people have spoken” and must be obeyed … so the massed voices of the people you call delusional are directing an exit from the EU, but you still think Article 50 should be triggered ASAP. Are you afraid the delusional British people might come to their senses before Brexit actually happens?

      Article 50 revocation is not as clear cut as you suggest. As it is EU legislation, lawyers in the Irish Republic are currently seeking to unravel the issue by a reference to the European Court of Justice. Let’s wait and see what happens.

  7. Keep at it Richard, you are doing a necessary and welcome job.
    I’m delighted you as our MEP are engaging with these matters in a serious and responsible manner. Thank you
    Wish it were true of others !

  8. I get a bit tired of the “the result must be respected” line. An advisory opinion poll decided by outright lies is ba for democracy and simply encourages more lies, as Trump was quick to notice. The whole thing should be junked.

  9. News of your proposed amendments has touched a raw nerve in the brexit machine. The timing and similarity of this belated press coverage suggests an organised syndication of pro-Brexit propaganda to discredit the opposition as it arises. Not a sign of a healthy free press in a healthy democracy.

    It would be a betrayal to deny the electorate a final referendum on the choices available after negotiations. The June 23rd vote, so tainted by lies and mutually exclusive propositions, cannot of itself justify such a disruptive and expensive constitutional upheaval, with its irreversible effect on generations to come.

    The nation is bitter and divided. Remain voters should not have to accept the narrow victory of a dishonest, xenophobic campaign and Leave voters should be allowed to review the integrity of promises that won their first vote. The nation’s future belongs to the young, but the door to a wider world has been slammed in their faces by what was substantially a protest vote of the dispossessed, with no sharp focus on EU membership. A referendum on the realities of brexit could turn the tide; the least we owe the young is that chance to avoid a future of servicing a crippling national debt – while missing all the opportunities abroad that we had.

  10. Can you explain to me why the EU and the member states did not understand that “only Parliament can decide” right from the start? I did, simply from paying attention in history lessons at a state secondary school in London 60 years ago. Adherance to the rule of law is the fourth (I think) of the EU’s foundational principles: but the universal hysteria on the 24th June suggests that no one from Brussels to Bratislava and Bilbao gives damn about the law. Can you explain it to them now? Perhaps Donald Tusk might understand. This EU hysteria has done immeasurable harm to the Remain cause in Britain. (Yes, there still is a Remain cause.)

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