The writing is on the wall for a ‘People vs Parliament’ election. Remainers mustn’t fall into Johnson’s trap

The Tories are in election mode. Are the left?

A judge has agreed to fast-track a hearing on whether Boris Johnson can legally suspend Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit.

More than 70 MPs and Peers have joined forced to call on the courts to rule that suspending Parliament to allow the UK to leave without a deal would be “unlawful and unconstitutional”.

But it’s exactly the sort of battle Johnson’s team is gearing up for: legal processes trying to halt the ‘will of the people’.

The argument is trash, of course. But it is also powerful. And last week it was reported that Johnson’s chief adviser Dominic Cummings told staff that Johnson would ignore the result of the confidence vote and call a “people v politicians” general election.

It’s through this lens that the ‘People’s PMQs’ that Johnson held today on Facebook should be understood. So too the Telegraphpoll‘ that showed public support for forcing through Brexit by ‘any means necessary’, including proroguing (shutting down) Parliament.

Johnson’s latest accusation that MPs and the EU are “colluding” to block Brexit fits in perfectly with this Phoney War strategy. In his Vote Leave populist guise, Johnson is presenting himself – apparently without irony – as the anti-elite figure Britain needs. All of it is message testing for a snap ballot. While the left fight over who should be in a Remain alliance, the Leavers are winning the argument.

Only a political – rather than technical – challenge to this stands much chance of succeeding. No deal is an undemocratic and elite project – which is why Cummings and co. are now trying to turn those guns on Remainers. Don’t fall into the trap.

Josiah Mortimer is Editor of Left Foot Forward. Follow him on Twitter.

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9 Responses to “The writing is on the wall for a ‘People vs Parliament’ election. Remainers mustn’t fall into Johnson’s trap”

  1. Tom Sacold

    Great article on Labour List – “LeFT: Why we’re campaigning to leave, fight and transform”

    “To the astonishment of the ruling class, the working class has demonstrated a desire for change, which is reflected both by the Corbyn movement and the vote to leave the EU in 2016. As socialists, it is our job to lead the way for a truly transformative programme, overcoming neoliberalism and working towards a radical, democratic, environmentalist and socialist agenda.

    The potential is there in Labour’s left-wing programme – the fact that we are besieged by the representatives of the ruling class on a daily basis is evidence of this. Our programme has the potential to unite the working class in the fight for a truly democratic economy, and to combat the racist nationalism of Nigel Farage and Boris Johnson by preventing them from cynically appealing to a disaffected working class with their disaster capitalist agenda.”

    See: https://labourlist.org/2019/08/left-why-were-campaigning-to-leave-fight-and-transform/

    Leaving the EU is NOT rightwing.
    Leaving the EU will enable real socialist reform in the UK.

  2. Julia Gibb

    The Tories are going to grab every penny they can before they are kicked out. An example of their methods below!

    http://michaelrosenblog.blogspot.com/2014/03/gove-nicked-our-schools-and-handed-them.html

  3. Julia Gibb

    Regardless of Tom Sacold’s spin Brext is very Right Wing! Use your common sense and look at who is funding Brexit and who is leading Brexit. American Right Wingers love it.

    The left like Tom have been suckered into delivering their dream profit scenario.

  4. Tom Sacold

    There can never be real socialism within the EU’s neoliberal Single Market. It is designed to enhance and extend capitalism in the interests of the bosses of europe’s multinational corporations.

    Socialist reform can only come after leaving the EU.

  5. Danny

    Tom Sacold is quite right. For starters, you cannot have a substantial extension of public ownership under EU membership since EU law outlaws public monopoly in many sectors, supposedly in the interests of economic interpenetration between Member States but really in the interests of the 1%.

    Julia Gibb says “Use your common sense”, but why not actually use the entire body of EU law to see if it permits democratic socialism or not? Many Labour leftists fight shy of such an analysis, which would actually require them to do some hard graft, learning up about the EU Treaties and EU legislation. These Treaties and legislation are overwhelmingly neoliberal.

    The bigger picture is that the Labour Party is increasingly a party of the middle class and of their interests and that (unlike previous generations) its left wing does not want to change things very much. That is the deeper reason why so many “leftists” are pro-EU.

  6. Michael Fitchett

    If we cannot nationalise businesses because of the EU, how come the Dutch, German and French railways are all State-owned? Tom Sacold knows nothing about it.

  7. Stewart Eames

    Tom Sacold is right in terms of principle, but in the midst of an attempted far-right coup ‘principle’ will not win an election. REMAIN has to be the priority.

  8. The writing is on the wall for a ‘People vs Parliament’ election. Remainers mustn’t fall into Johnson’s trap - Two Fingers Media

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