Just over half the voters wanted to leave the EU. Just under half voted to Remain. The Government and Labour Leadership now wish to do neither. What they plan, we are told, is a Compromise? Did anyone vote for a Compromise? No. It was to be In or Out. However, the Government, even with the support of the Labour Leadership, cannot deliver Out. That said, to seek a second referendum limited to a choice between the Compromise or staying In would be seen by Leavers for what it is, a dirty little Fix to cover the nakedness of May and Corbyn’s attempts to hold on to their party leaderships and of all the Parliamentarians who went along with the referendum in the first place. It would be telling Leavers, in effect, that, to avoid the embarrassment of their voting for Leave again, that option was being simply left off the ballot paper this time round. The effect would be to disenfranchise the Leave voters or to force them to vote for what they have already voted against. The results would be dire.
Is there a way out? No. The sins of David Cameron and a spineless Cabinet and Parliament are to be visited on the nation and there is no absolution to be had. However, the punishment might be mitigated if those who campaigned for and proposed and approved the referendum were to admit their guilt in offering what was never available: some hope. Alternatively, the punishment might be survived if the Brexitiers were now to campaign for the Revocation of Article 50 rather than a People’s Vote on the faux basis that May has made an irretrievable mess of Brexit and that it is time to step back and regroup before the UK loses the option to leave under Article 50 by agreeing a Compromise with the EU. If, with the tacit support of Remainers, they were successful, the EU row would then rumble on in the UK as it did before the referendum, albeit with more passion for a while, but without insulting the many who voted Out by employing a cheap trick to disenfranchise them. The Brexitiers say they love their country and revere democracy: now is their chance to prove it.