A Very Merry Un-Brexit Day

I really hate to tempt fate like this, but given today marks the third failure of the UK Government’s Withdrawal Bill, it looks like the UK’s “Independence Day” (how I loathe that fiction) has been postponed for at least two weeks.

It’s a fine day for Vote Leave to essentially admit to their multitude of crimes against electoral law:

Withdrawing their appeal against the Electoral Commission’s findings certainly seems like the closest we’ll get to an outright confession.

Which just goes to show how ludicrous it is to persist in carrying out a vote that’s riddled with fraud, corruption, and discrepancies, to the point that were it legally binding like the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum, then it would have to be considered null and void:

Jessica Simor: In May, the Electoral Commission found very serious electoral offenses against Leave.EU, which was a subsidiary organisation in the vote. But then, most importantly, in July, against Vote Leave, the main campaign, and it found that Vote Leave had committed very serious electoral offenses, imposed maximum fine levels and referred them to the Metropolitan Police. Then in October, there was a judgement in the divisional court that found the electoral commission had also given incorrect advice on what could be spent. The result of that is, effectively, Vote Leave spent about £500,000 more than it was entitled to spend, and it spent that money in the last week of the campaign on AIQ & Facebook ads.

Now the referendum was of course advisory, so the question then was what was Theresa May going to do with advice? She was absolutely sure that the result was the democratic will of the people… Well first, it’s not binding, and second, she’s treating it as binding, and the crucial point is that had it been binding, it would have been voided by way of some statutory mechanism, or under the common law…

Well our argument was that actually under the common law – forget statute, under common law – the concept of “democratic” has a very clear meaning, and it means legal: i.e., if you cheat, it’s not democratic & you’ve got to do it again. That’s mirrored in the Venice commission and international law, so international law has effectively adopted the common law and said if there’s mass cheating – which there was – then the result will be voided.

The right to vote is not the right to tick a box, it’s the right to tick a box in a legal process, because obviously ticking a box in a process that involves massive cheating is not worth doing. So what we were saying was “well, Prime Minister, you, acting reasonably, cannot simply ignore this. You’ve got to respond in some way, you’ve got to at least acknowledge this happened, and do something about it: either take it to another vote, extend time, put it to Parliament, have a public enquiry – what you can’t do is simply say “I don’t wanna know about this, this didn’t happen.”” That was effectively our argument, and that was dismissed.

James O’Brien: So the court essentially found that the Prime Minister is not obliged to take account of the mounting evidence that casts doubt on the legitimacy of the referendum?

JS: It’s slightly worse than that, I’m afraid. Slightly worse than that because the High Court actually found that we were too late. We were out of time. The High Court said we should have brought the claim within three months of the expenses having been lodged at the Electoral Commission, which would have been December 2016, or three months after notification. But of course at that point nobody knew about any of this.

JO: In July, that £675 grand that suddenly pops up in the fashion student’s bank account was discovered.

JS: Well there were rumours around, but certainly when he notified, the Electoral Commission had in fact closed its investigation, and judicial review had to be brought in against the Electoral Commission to get them to reopen it, which led to their result in July 2018. So we’ve actually been told we should have done something which was impossible – in fact, would have failed at that point, because it was impossible – and we’ve also been told that Parliament’s now in control, which we know this week is not true… We’ve also been told that administrative convenience requires that this sort of “be let go of,” and as I said to the court, it is difficult to see how it is administratively convenient to treat an unlawful referendum as lawful.

But in any event, the final thing, which the court kept asking about, was “well, how can we prove it actually had an effect?” The law is clear that you don’t have to prove it, because if someone cheats in Tour de France, can’t prove that they wouldn’t have won if they hadn’t taken those drugs.

We were arguing that it wasn’t just the Electoral Commission’s findings, it was also the ICO fining Leave.EU £120 grand, the DCMS findings, the AIQ-Mueller investigation… There is real concern about the delay, because the Met has had this information since July 2018, and the NCA slightly later, although Leave.EU was deferred in May 2018. So there is concern about the delay, because… Brexit.

Yet the UK Government presses on. The main opposition party presses on. Even the parties opposed to the UK leaving the EU talk far too much about respecting a referendum which simply cannot be considered democratic. You don’t get to talk about democracy or “the Will of the People” when you break electoral law, you show nothing but contempt & mockery of it.

The UK is a farce. The UK Government is a farce. The opposition parties are a farce. The High Court, the Electoral Commission, the Met, farces all.

Time to get out of this rabbit hole.


2 thoughts on “A Very Merry Un-Brexit Day

  1. Marconatrix says:

    Honestly, weren’t we all brought up to believe in the near perfection of Brit. justice and government? This sounds more like the sort of sordid goings-on you’d expect in some seedy latin-american banana republic or suchlike. Scotland will certainly be best out of all of this, but what hope now for the rUK?

  2. Douglas says:

    Scotland, you don’t have time to faff about.


    This evil brew has all the ingredients of gestating Fascism.

    Effigies dragged through the streets of London with nooses, disregard of law, groups marching in quasi military uniforms, cheated votes, dark money, travel advice to citizens: avoid central London…

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