People Have the Right to Change Their Minds About Brexit

On the 23rd June 2016 51.9% of British voters opted to leave the European Union, based upon lies they had been fed concerning the cost of being in the EU and the supposed benefits of leaving. But no one really knew what Brexit actually meant and even now it is unclear what exactly will unfold. So surely when Theresa May negotiates the Brexit deal, the British public should have a chance to decide if the deal is what they want for the future of Britain.

On the 20th October, 700,000 people lined the streets of London to show their support for a new Brexit referendum. The People’s Vote March claims to represent the “majority of the public for a People’s Vote and a final say on the Brexit deal.” These people feel that it is their democratic right to decide if we really want Brexit, now that we know the facts and understand the economic consequences of leaving the EU. Leaving the EU means that we will have to negotiate replacement trade deals with 27 European countries, which is likely to result in worse deals than we currently have with EU countries, as we would lack bargaining power. The negative effect of this would be a decline in UK exports to the EU and thus a decrease in GDP, meaning less funding for public services such as the NHS. People should be given the chance to vote again now that they are more informed about what Brexit truely entails.

One in seven European companies with UK suppliers have moved part or all of their businesses out of Britain, according to the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply. Corporations have left Britain in favour of the EU because of uncertainty and lack of confidence in the future of Britain’s economic prosperity. The number of businesses that relocate to the EU is likely to rise as the Brexit deadline grows closer and closer. This is expected to put 100,000 jobs in the UK at risk, when many who voted in favour of Brexit did so to ensure that British jobs were protected. Now that we are aware of the implications of Brexit upon employment, the people should be given another opportunity to decide whether the Brexit deal Theresa May negotiates is the right one for Britain.

In the lead up to the Brexit vote in June 2016 people were bombarded with false information and confusing arguments for and against leaving the EU. Now that we are more aware of the ramifications of Brexit and its effects upon the country, people would be able to vote on Brexit based on reasoned arguments, rather than on biased views of campaigners. The Brexit that Theresa May is negotiating is not the Brexit that the public voted for two years ago, so Britain should be given the opportunity to decide again. Whether the outcome changes or not, the future of Britain should be based on true democracy, rather than on the misleading campaigns run in 2016.

Lucie Phipps and Tilly Judges