The Remain element of the Labour Party is now going at its own leadership hammer and tongs – and are we seeing the emergence of a new backstop issue?
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Many Labour party activists were a bit miffed to say the least when they found out their party's draft EU election literature omitted any mention of a second referendum.
And now the row has deepened reports the Independent, with 75 of its MPs and 14 MEPs having written to the Labour governing body demanding that there be a clear commitment to a second referendum in Labour's EU election manifesto.
In the letter they say:
"To motivate our supporters, and to do the right thing by our members and our policy, a clear commitment to a confirmatory public vote on any Brexit deal must be part of our European election manifesto. We understand the many different pressures and views within our movement, but without this clear commitment, we fear that our electoral coalition could fall apart."
But of course the Labour leadership appears to be against such a public vote
As I said yesterday, now that Jeremy Corbyn has been forced to break cover on Brexit, this split was always going to happen – whichever way he jumped. And it will only get worse as the local and EU elections loom.
Well, there's a turn up for the book! I've just read in the Express that Change UK MEP candidate and senior barrister, Jessica Simor, agrees with something a Ukipper, namely me, has been saying for a while – that it would likely be unlawful for the UK to cancel the EU elections at this late stage, because it would strip EU27 citizens of their human right to vote in European elections under the EU treaties.
And the Express quotes her as saying:
"Stopping the election at the last minute would likely be illegal.
"EU citizens who had chosen to vote here rather than as they could have done, in their home state, would have had their rights violated.
"This would be very serious for the UK – not something you want to do just before opening trade negotiations."
So, now I'll tell you where I think this might well lead.
Once we have held those elections, because be in no doubt they will be held, then it will suddenly 'occur' to a lawyer that the UK cannot leave the EU until the end of this EU five year election cycle, because if we did leave the EU then all the EU27 citizens living here would be stripped of their right to representation by an EU MEP.
Every EU27 citizen that voted in the UK for a UK based MEP would have no-one in the EU to represent them.
Unless our MEPs maintained their seats or EU27 voters in the UK were undemocratically 'allocated' to an EU 27 MEP.
The argument that EU27 citizens must have a vote will be used to force the UK to complete the election process now it's started.
And the argument that EU27 citizens cannot be disenfranchised will be used to keep the UK in the EU for the following five years. It will be along the lines of, how can we say we're retaining all rights for EU citizens staying in the UK after Brexit, if we're about to strip them of their MEP representation?
And don't forget the limbo of UK citizens voting in the EU, what of them?
The reason this has not come up before, is that Brexit Day was originally timed to be just before the end of a five year EU election cycle.
But we are now at the beginning of a new cycle, so the democratic landscape for EU27 citizens living in the UK and UK citizens residing in the EU has changed and the Remainers will take full advantage of that.
This I believe will become the new intractable and unsolvable, but manufactured, dilemma of Brexit. Forget the Irish border backstop for now, this will become the 'democratic backstop' – we have to stay in the EU until the problem of EU27 voters rights in the UK has been solved.
This could be a backstop we are being purposefully plugged into.
Now, this may all come as bad news or a nasty surprise to you. But do you think it is a surprise to the establishment? Do you think Theresa May and her cronies are completely unaware of this sort of legal problem?
Why do you think we're holding these MEP elections? It's to keep the UK in the EU as full members!
The only way to stop this is to pull the plug on the elections and leave on WTO terms immediately, but the likelihood of that happening is zero with the current make-up of the chambers of the Commons and Lords.
Observance of the law will be used here to try and keep the UK tied to the EU, but observance of the law will be ignored when considering the unlawful extension of Article 50, not once but twice!
We live in politically and democratically dangerous times!