In the light of our vote to leave the EU, by 52% to 48% there could not be much more evidence of division within the nation. The fact that only 72% of us did turn out means that in one sense the country is made up of 3 groups. The 34% who voted to remain, the 37% who voted to leave and the 28% who did not to vote. Assuming that many of those who voted to remain, have not changed their minds, we are faced with a substantial difference of opinion within the nation. However yesterday a man emerged who appears on the face of things to have an idea that could unite at least 72% of us. 67 Year old David Michael Davis MP spent some of yesterday speaking to his colleagues in Parliament and his words suggest that very soon all 33Million of us will soon be of one mind.
Clearly those of us who voted to remain are keen to know what our departure will look like, how much damage will be done to our nation and our own lives as we cope with the idea of no longer being part of the European Union. Equally those who voted to leave will be keen to ensure that we do actually leave, and it is many of these people who were promised by people like David Davis, that they would get their country, their sovereignty, their democracy back. As Nigel Farage explained to them a few hours before the vote, the vote gave us “the opportunity to get our country out of the European Union and in doing so get our borders back, our democracy back and for us to embark upon an exciting future as an independent nation….. To have a democratic Britain able to make the big decisions in our own Parliament is of huge importance.” Now to be fair that was 3 months ago and a week is supposed to be a long time in politics so perhaps we should simply quietly accept the wisdom of our political leaders and acquiesce to their point of view? Or perhaps David Davis is saying something that will unite all 33 Million of us against him and any of his colleagues who have forgotten how important this is likely to be to us.
Speaking to the House of Lords EU select committee Mr Davis said “Clearly there is a need for Parliament to be informed without giving away our negotiating position. I may not be able to tell you everything, even in private hearings…I can entirely see accountability after the event, that’s very clear. In advance, I don’t think it’s possible for parliamentarians to micro-manage the process and wouldn’t give us an optimum outcome for the country…..Much of the confidentiality I’m talking about will be time-related. We can tell you something late but we can’t tell you in advance.”
So that’s it then, even the Parliamentarians won’t be told some things until after the deal is done, after the negotiations are over. Let alone those of us who were asked to make a decision. Our role is now consigned to history and far from the big decisions being taken by Parliament or even by you and I, they will be taken by one politician, elected to be fair by 26,414 voters in a place in Yorkshire called Haltemprice and Howden and presumably helped by a myriad of special advisers and civil servants. Our future, one this Government invested so much political capital in is to be finally determined by one man who received less votes in the last General Election than I did when I came third in the race to be Police and Crime Commissioner for Sussex in 2012. When Vote Leave coined the hashtag #takecontrol this is presumably what they meant. If I was comfortable with the hyperbole of Nigel Farage, I might say this was exactly the sort of anti-democratic bureaucratic form of Government that Brexit promised to get us away from. So perhaps Mr Davis will unite all 33M of us against him. Not a great basis for unity, but perhaps better than us all be divided against one another!