The EU Referendum and the democratic deficit

Oh, the irony. The UK might vote to leave the EU not because of the democratic shortcomings of that organisation but because of those of the UK…

Unfortunately, elections are about much more than the issues at hand. Local councillors know this all too well, as they lose their seat not because of anything they’ve done wrong but because the Chancellor put a penny on a pint of beer (or glass of wine, depending on the area). And here we have a momentous decision about to be made and the leader of the Remain campaign also happens to be the leader of the government: David Cameron. A leader who is not as unpopular as Mrs Thatcher, but unpopular enough. The Conservatives got 25% support at last year’s election (37% of the 66% who voted) so on day one of his new government there were already 75% potentially opposed to it, and him, and after 6 years of power there are lots of things that people want to give him a kicking for. Now is not the right time, but for a lot of people that’s a moot point.

Herein lies a very good reason why Labour should not have elected a contrarian like Jeremy Corbyn as their leader. In order for Cameron to pull this off, he needs the support of Labour, but Labour can’t give that support. Corbyn is too ambivalent and too honest. So Cameron is out on his own, making a good, positive case, but one that many folk won’t listen to because of who he is, and because our democratic system didn’t give a mandate. He thinks he has a mandate – those 330 MPs who were elected last May – but he and we might be about to discover to all our costs that the mandate is an illusion.


Posted June 13, 2016 by dadge

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