The Lib Dems are now the most extremist party in the UK. They might not look like extremists, being made up of mostly nice, middle-class people from the leafier bits of the nation. But they have just adopted a policy that is arguably more extreme, more corrosive of British values, more counter to the great traditions of this nation, than any other party policy of recent decades.
Yes, this is the new Lib Dem policy to cancel Brexit. At their party conference in Bournemouth the Lib Dems voted overwhelmingly in favour of a policy of ‘stopping Brexit altogether’, in Jo Swinson’s words. New member Chuka Umunna spelt it out: ‘This [policy] will stop this national embarrassment’ — he means Brexit — ‘and enable us to focus on the things that really matter.’
I often find myself wondering if politicians think before they speak. Have the Lib Dems thought through what their Stop Brexit policy means? It means they have devoted themselves to blocking the largest act of democracy in the history of this nation. It means they want to void — literally void — the votes of 17.4m people. It means they want to do something that no other party in the modern era has proposed: prevent the enactment of a free and fair democratic vote.
This is serious stuff. Certain members of the Remainer elite — Lib Dems included — will often condemn Brexiteers as ‘extremist’. But I have heard nothing from any leading Brexiteer that comes even close to the extremism of cancelling a democratic vote. That’s banana republic territory. What is this, Zimbabwe?