The coming week brings a parliamentary showdown between Brexiteers and the ragbag alliance of Remainer MPs from the mainstream parties. These Remoaner plotters don’t only oppose Tory prime minister Boris Johnson’s move to prorogue parliament for a few days. They also want to postpone Brexit again, to give them more time to bury it altogether. The result could well be an Autumn general election. Boris Johnson faces a clear choice. He needs to face down the Remainer establishment inside and outside Parliament, ignore the blackmail and blandishments of the EU, and deliver a clean-break Brexit by the deadline of October 31st.
If Boris has the verve and nerve to do that, we are prepared to put country before party, back him and make him a hero.
But – and it’s a big but – if Boris continues to backslide away from a clean-break Brexit, and instead tries to resell us the tweaked version of Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement he is now suggesting, we will not stand for it.
In those circumstances the Brexit Party will have no choice but to stand against the Conservatives as well as the Remainer Labour Party in every seat up and down the country.
The stakes could hardly be higher. The fundamental issue at stake here is far bigger than party politics. It is democracy itself.
What sort of democratic society do we live in, if a few MPs backed by the Remainer establishment can deny the biggest democratic mandate in British history – the 17.4m who voted to Leave the EU in 2016?
The Remainer protestors screech about how Boris’ controversial prorogation destroys parliamentary democracy. Who do they think they’re kidding? These Remoaners are the real anti-democrats. They side with Parliament, not against the unelected bureaucrats of the EU, but against Brexit and the millions of British people who back it.
Their mass online petition against proroguing parliament gives the game away. It says that Parliament must not be dissolved ‘unless and until the Article 50 period has been sufficiently suspended or the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU has been cancelled’.
In other words, they’re not against prorogation at all. They’re just against Brexit, and will support any measure to scupper it.
The ‘Rabble Alliance’ made up of Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour, Tory Remainers, the Lib Dems, Scots Nats and the rest, looks even less impressive than the dregs of Change UK. But their efforts to thwart the democratic demand for Brexit have the backing of powerful forces. Even the Financial Times, bible of big business, backs a government led by the Socialist Corbyn to block a ‘no-deal’ Brexit.
That is why it’s vital we take a stand against them to protect democracy. In any general election, we will target the seats of top Tory Remainers such as Philip Hammond, and Remainer Labour MPs who ‘represent’ Leave-voting seats in the North, Midlands and Wales.
But standing up for democracy must mean more than defeating the Remainers. It must mean a clean-break Brexit that leaves the UK a sovereign, independent nation, free to control its own laws, borders and money.
Unfortunately, the Tory Withdrawal Agreement that Boris is now trying to reheat and get through parliament as his ‘highest priority’ would mean nothing of that sort.
The Tory government says the problem with Mrs May’s Withdrawal Agreement is the Irish backstop. But even without the backstop, it remains the worst deal in history – a new European treaty of the sort a nation would normally sign only after being defeated in a war.
It will bind us into the customs union – with no ability to sign trade deals with the world. It will maintain the jurisdiction of EU courts over the UK, and will not deliver control of our fishing waters or economy. It would mean we get to pay the EU £39bn – and get nothing in return.
In short, whether fronted by Mrs May or Mr Johnson, the Tory Withdrawal Agreement does not amount to a meaningful Brexit. It is a trap that would leave the UK under EU rules with no vote, no voice, no veto.
That is why The Brexit Party has been getting ready to fight a General Election, with 625 approved Prospective Parliamentary Candidates. More than 500 of them came to London this week, to endorse our message: ‘We Are Ready’ – for a Brexit general election, and a clean-break Brexit.
As I said at that conference, we could be Boris’ best friend, or his worst enemy. If he goes for the clean-break Brexit the UK needs, we can form an unstoppable alliance. If he backslides into the Withdrawal Agreement, we will take the Tories on and they will not be able to win a parliamentary majority.
Either way: without The Brexit Party, there will be no real Brexit.