Protesters continue to fight for democracy, but only a Final Say will restore it

Editorial: The solution for a nation so divided is to put the question to the people again – no deal or no Brexit?

Saturday 31 August 2019 20:27
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'Stop the coup' protesters gather in Manchester city centre

The hundreds of thousands of protesters who took to the streets across the UK in recent days have at least one thing in common with the brave demonstrators in Hong Kong – a belief in democracy, and a preparedness to use direct action to preserve it.

It is that faith in our parliamentary system, as much as the European cause, that has ignited these actions. The Johnson government has shown itself to be ruthless in its pursuit of a no-deal Brexit, including the unconstitutional suspension of parliament.

Ostensibly the no-deal policy is merely a negotiating ploy, designed to terrify the European Union into offering concessions it cannot make on the Irish backstop. Short of sacrificing the integrity of the single market and throwing Ireland under the proverbial bus, the EU cannot invest its future in vague “alternative arrangements”, even if it wanted to. Compromise is one thing, but London should understand that Brussels cannot compromise with reality.

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