Following the government’s defeat in the meaningful vote on Tuesday, former Prime Minister Gordon Brown has outlined a possible way forward for Brexit, which would involve a significant postponement of exit day and might also include a second referendum. Jim Gallagher explains why he thinks this might be the most sensible course of action.
With parliament paralysed, the country deeply divided, and trust in political institutions eroded by the aftermath of the Brexit referendum, it is easy to conclude that there is no way through the political and perhaps the economic chaos which faces the UK.
These problems feed off one another. The deadlock in parliament stokes up cynicism and polarises opinion in the country even more. Even if Westminster compromise could somehow be cooked up, the lesson of Theresa May’s deal-making is that getting a sustainable compromise is almost impossible in the face of such deep divisions.
Voters could be forgiven for concluding that the British political system is fundamentally broken when it cannot deal with the main issue of the day. They will be right, unless we do something radically different, and something which addresses all (and not just one) of the issues. That is the attraction of the ideas put forward yesterday by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Continue reading