Monday 16 September 2019 - People's Vote

Monday 16 September 2019

Morning Briefing: "Incredible Hulk" Johnson to meet European leaders with threats but no concrete proposals

It was a weekend largely focused on the autobiography of David Cameron, the PM who brought all of this Brexit madness on. Three things to note: he now thinks a People’s Vote is going to be required to break the deadlock; he doesn’t trust Boris Johnson or Michael Gove any more than the rest of the nation and there’s a lot of swearing going on in Number 10.

He will be doing more interviews this week as For The Record hits the bookshops, but, in truth, everyone is seeing for themselves the truth about Johnson, Gove and Cummings, without the need of a prompt from yesterday’s man.

To get us out of the mess that Cameron created, May failed to resolve and Johnson is now trying to deal with by pretending to be the Incredible Hulk, the country needs a People’s Vote. It’s the only way to bring a democratic solution to the crisis.

Johnson meets European leaders with threats but no concrete proposals made to resolve Brexit

Boris Johnson will meet European commission president Jean-Claude Juncker for his first face-to-face meeting since becoming prime minister – and 26 days after Chancellor Angela Merkel gave him a 30-day challenge to solve the crisis.

Johnson claimed “a huge amount of progress” has been made for a deal and utilised the tortured, somewhat childish, metaphor that “the madder Hulk gets, the strong Hulk gets” in an interview with the Mail on Sunday. His former colleague David Gauke reminded him on this morning's BBC Today programme of the need for a Prime Minister to obey the law.

But the talk coming from Luxembourg and Brussels is much less positive or aggressive with no concrete proposals being made and the clock running down. The UK has been under obligation, as the side that wants to change the Withdrawal Agreement, to come forward with new proposals - but so far we have seen nothing. Mr Johnson may say he will reject an extension and that the UK will leave, deal or no deal, but there is still no clear route to resolution.

Chief EU negotiatior Michel Barnier will also join them for lunch. Later this week, the Supreme Court case will be heard into whether the Government shutting down Parliament was unlawful as MPs wait in the wings, watching for the next move.

Only a People’s Vote can resolve this undemocratic situation. It is time to Let Us Be Heard.

Labour motions pressing for anti-Brexit stance at conference

Labour will face increased pressure from local party activists to adopt a more wholehearted anti-Brexit stance at its upcoming conference, according to an analysis of submitted motions which shows 90% want the party to commit to campaigning to stay in the EU.

An assessment of the 90 motions connected to Brexit tabled by local parties ahead of the conference in Brighton, which will begin on Saturday 21 September, showed 81 of them called for Labour to support staying in the EU, while there were none opposing a second referendum which included an option of staying in the EU.

Last week the party’s deputy leader, Tom Watson argued that Labour should “unambiguously and unequivocally back remain”, and also seek a second Brexit referendum before a general election. The idea was swiftly rejected by Corbyn, who called it “Tom’s view”.

People's Vote supporters out in force over the weekend

Hundreds of People’s Vote supporters came out over the weekend to give their full-throated backing at great Let Us Be Heard rallies in Newport and Belfast.

In Newport, politicians from across the political spectrum took to the stage. Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price told the crowd: "We need to put common interests ahead of party interests". MP for Aberconwy, Guto Bebb, who was one of the 21 Conservative MPs to lose the whip, was given a loud cheer from the crowd as he arrived on the stage.

He said: "This started with a referendum, it should end with a confirmatory vote and a second referendum."

In Belfast, speakers included Dominic Grieve QC MP, the SDLP's Claire Hanna, Green Party NI leader Clare Bailey and MEP Naomi Long. The event was compered by Alastair Campbell.

Leader of the Alliance Party Ms Long told the huge crowd that gathered in Belfast's Ulster Hall that the Good Friday Agreement is under threat from Brexit.

"We all know in Northern Ireland that while Brexit is challenging for everyone, for the EU, it is an existential challenge here in Northern Ireland and a No Deal would be catastrophic," she said.

The events came as more than 130 coaches have been booked for the important People's Vote march on Saturday October 19. To make sure you can give your support in London, check your travel arrangements here.

It's clear that Brexit must be put to the people. Now is a crucial time to get involved with the People's Vote campaign. Sign up to volunteer today. 


Quote of the Day

"Boris Johnson forgets that the Hulk only fights for the good of the whole. Mad and strong can also be dense and destructive. The Hulk works best when he is in unison with a team, and is a disaster when he is alone. Plus...he’s always got Dr. Banner with science and reason."

Hollywood actor Mark Ruffalo explains to Boris Johnson why comparing himself to the Incredible Hulk is a bad idea.


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More Brexit news...

Johnson invokes fictional character with anger issues in latest Brexit ramblings (HuffPost)

Hundreds at People's Vote rally in Newport (BBC Wales)

Cameron's fury at "liars of Leave" (Sunday Times)

Sam Gyimah joins Lib Dems (BBC News)

Hundreds call for People's Vote at Belfast rally (Metro)

We asked how you would vote in second Brexit referendum - and the results may surprise you (Grimsby Live)

More Brexit comment...

Matthew D'Ancona: There's nothing normal about this beast of a government (Guardian)

Adam Boulton: Second Brexit vote would pull Johnson out of the quagmire (Sky News)

David Gauke: The three Brexit policy options from which the Prime Minister must now choose (Conservative Home)

Paul Waugh: Bad Spad and dangerous to know (HuffPost)