7 Days Remaining

Tuesday 6th
posted by Morning Star in Britain

by Sofia Lotto Persio
DEMANDS for a second referendum on Britain’s EU membership were debated by MPs yesterday, prompted by an online petition that received more than four million signatures.
The petition, started by Leave campaigner Oliver Healey before the vote, asked for the government to hold a second referendum if the winning majority was less than 60 per cent or the turnout was below 75 per cent.
Leave won with 51.9 per cent on a 72 per cent turnout, lower than the petition threshold but higher than at any election since 1992.
Introducing the petition, SNP MP Ian Blackford said he appreciated the motivation of those who call for a second referendum.
“More than two months after the EU referendum we know nothing more than the Prime Minister’s soundbite that ‘Brexit means Brexit’,” he said, criticising the government’s approach as “hope for the best.”
Outside Parliament, Trade Unionists Against the EU chairman Doug Nicholls said a second referendum would be “unnecessary, undemocratic and, if it went through, it would cause even more alienation and disruption than being part of the EU did.”
Mr Nicholls is campaigning for the government to include British workers’ representatives and trade unions to be part of the Brexit negotiating team.
And despite the petition’s online support, Dr Peter Catterall, reader in history, sociology and criminology at the University of Westminster, did not think that a second referendum would produce a different outcome.
But he warned: “The prospect is that whatever the government will negotiate will produce great amounts of dissatisfaction.”
Brexit uncertainty is already causing dissatisfaction among foreign governments with investments at stake in Britain.
On the eve of the G20 summit in China, Japan expressed concerns over the future of its firms operating in Britain, while the US has restated its position of prioritising its TTIP trade deal with the EU rather than a Britain equivalent.
Other countries in Asia have been more supportive of new trade deals.