Chuka Umunna and John Rentoul debate the possibility of another Brexit referendum

Final Say: Independent petition calling for referendum on final Brexit deal breaks 225,000

Campaign calls for the electorate to have a new vote on the exit terms

Lizzy Buchan
Political Correspondent
@LizzyBuchan
Thursday 26 July 2018 16:11
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The Independent’s petition calling for the public to have a vote on the final Brexit deal has been signed by more than 225,000 people.

The Final Say campaign demands the electorate is given a new referendum on Theresa May's exit terms before Britain officially leaves the bloc in March 2019.

Within hours of launching, the bid had won the support of thousands of readers, as well as politicians from across the political spectrum, including Tory ex-cabinet minister Dominic Grieve and Labour's Chuka Umunna.

You can support the Final Say and have your voice heard on our future relationship with the EU by signing our petition here.

The campaign, which was launched on Tuesday, calls for the British public to be given a say on whether to accept the final deal Ms May agrees with Brussels in the autumn - if there is one - or to leave without a deal.

The Independent’s editorial read: “The British people decided to pursue our course in the referendum of 2016, so as we now look for a decision on whether we will like the deal agreed with the EU (assuming there is one), it is natural that those same people should have the final say.

“Indeed, given the magnitude of the decision, it would be essential for the British people to be given that final right of approval, even if cabinet and parliament were providing the leadership we need, which they are not.”

Mr Grieve, an influential Tory rebel, said it was "sensible" way to break the parliamentary deadlock, while Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable said it was a "brave and correct" move to support a people's vote on the final deal.

Former prime minister Tony Blair also came out in support, tweeting: “33m+ people voted in the EU referendum wanting a better country, not to be poorer, not to put further pressure on our already stretched health service, not for job losses or to stockpile food and medicines. It should be your Final Say."

It comes amid growing fears over the prospect of a no-deal Brexit, as Ms May's new blueprint revealed deep divisions within Conservative ranks and put pressure on her wafer thin Commons majority.

The prime minister has urged voters not to worry about Brexit, despite a string of revelations from ministers about plans to stockpile food, blood and medicines.

She said people should take “reassurance and comfort” from news of the plans, to be implemented if the UK crashes out of the EU without an agreement in March next year.

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