Tuesday 26 June 2018 - People's Vote

Tuesday 26 June 2018

Morning briefing: Business' Brexit backlash - 140,000 signatures and counting - make voting great again

Boris Johnson may have said “f**k business”. But industry has responded loudly, and the government’s campaign to silence business critics has failed.

The car industry says investment has halved this year - and that’s before Brexit has even happened. In a blistering attack on the government’s Brexit plans, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) this morning warns that Brexit uncertainty is "thwarting" decisions by major car companies to put more money into UK factories, as latest figures showed investment into that UK motor industry has halved in the last year.

BMW, which makes Mini and Rolls-Royce vehicles in the UK, says that if the “supply chain will have a stop at the border, then we cannot produce our products in the UK”. It joins Airbus and Siemens in sounding the Brexit alarm. These three companies support a combined total of over 200,000 UK jobs across their supply chains.

Other business leaders speaking out include the chairman of Standard Life and Barclays, who wants more clarity and the “sooner the better”.



But they are not going to get it because the government intends to kick the hard decisions on Brexit further down the road. Northern Ireland secretary Karen Bradley confirmed that the UK’s proposal to the Irish border problem will only emerge next month. That’s despite an EU summit this week which, once upon a time, was expected to be the moment the Irish border issue was settled.

Theresa May is playing for time out of fear that her party will be torn apart by the impossible demands of Brexit. This time-wasting is bad for industry, bad for jobs and bad for our public services - because, without a healthy economy, we won’t have the money to pay for the NHS, defence and everything else we need to invest in.

Quote of the day

"We always said we can do our best and prepare everything, but if at the end of the day the supply chain will have a stop at the border, then we cannot produce our products in the UK."

BMW customs manager Stephan Freismuth.

Video of the day

Would you trust Boris with your business?


People’s Vote petition over 140,000 - and still growing!

At the end of the day yesterday our petition demanding a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal was at 130,000. This morning it’s jumped to over 140,000 with another bumper day of signatures expected today. The call for a People’s Vote is too big to ignore!

If you haven’t signed the petition yet, you can do so here. And if you have see how many of your friends and colleagues you can get to sign up today!

Comedian David Mitchell has put his name to it, albeit with characteristic expectation management... (Have heart, David!)


Video of the day 2

Ok, so we've gone on about the People's Vote March a lot. But just WATCH these scenes from the day.



Make voting great again

The Electoral Commission has called for urgent reforms to electoral law. This follows a series of revelations around misuse of personal data by the likes of Cambridge Analytica and overseas interference in votes.

The Commission’s recommendations focus on the largely unregulated world of online political campaigning, including requirements for all digital political material to make clear who paid for it. It also calls for legislation banning spending by foreign organisations on UK elections, the ability to impose tougher fines beyond the current £20,000 cap, and tougher rules on when and how campaigns must declare their spending.

Tweet of the day

Ciaran Donovan, the white van driver who took Jacob Rees-Mogg apart LBC, hits back at ex-Ukip MP Douglas Carswell.


More Brexit news…

Nigel Farage denies shorting value of sterling on night of Brexit vote (Guardian)

Foreign businesses to UK: solve Brexit or risk £100bn in trade (Guardian)

Commission to EU27: Prepare airports for a ‘no-deal’ Brexit (Politico)

Banks’ plans for hard Brexit are ‘inadequate’, says EU watchdog (FT £)

World Cup 2018: Brexit chants could lead to fines, England fans warned (Times £)

Tweet of the day 2

Times Red Box editor Matt Chorley's take on Theresa May's meeting with Donald Tusk yesterday.


Top Brexit comment

Rachel Sylvester: Tories can’t win this battle with business (Times £)

Catherine Bearder: I work in Brussels alongside the EU Brexit negotiators and I find it incredible how little the UK government understands (Independent)

Jonathan Portes: We are running out of time to offer voters a new deal on immigration (Telegraph)

Looking forward...

Today, Tuesday 26 June

09:45 Sadiq Khan gives evidence on devolution and Brexit to Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs committee
11:30 Boris Johnson answers foreign office questions in Commons
14:30 Experts give evidence on post-Brexit migration policy to Home Affairs committee
16:00 Article 50 General Affairs Council
16:10 Defence minister Guto Bebb gives evidence on Galileo to Science and Technology committee
16:30 Westminster Hall debate: Upland farming after Brexit
19:30 Michel Barnier press conference on Brexit negotiations

Tomorrow, Wednesday 27 June

- BMA annual conference to debate Brexit
12:00 Prime Minister's Questions
14:15 Experts give evidence on EU Withdrawal to European Scrutiny committee