Gina Miller, the vocal pro-EU campaigner who managed to successfully challenge the government over parliamentary approval for article 50, is now planning to launch a tactical voting initiative to support and hopefully succeed in getting elected a number of candidates in the upcoming general election who are opposed to a full hard Brexit.
In what Ms Miller is hailing as an electoral mandate for these aims the crowdfunding page set up to raise funds for this initiative quickly exceeded its financial targets on Wednesday, just one day after Theresa May called for the snap election.
The group that will make use of these funds will be called ‘Best For Britain’ and will be formally launched next week. The group aims to put its financial backing behind a slate of candidates who back the group’s desire for what it calls a “meaningful” vote by MPs at the end of the EU negotiation period. Despite the groups belief that this is the ‘best for Britain’ putting its financial power behind specific sympathetic candidates is very akin to the lobbying movement in America which aims to ensure candidates that support a very narrow and specific view point are elected, and that quite frankly is a very dangerous thing to allow.
Miller is attempting here to influence the Brexit process by putting money behind the candidates that agree with her view point, giving them a financial benefit over their opponents based upon one sole factor and the fact that this will give her and her group personal control over a number of sitting ministers.
“We want to build the biggest tactical voting effort in UK history to ensure that candidates across the country that promise to do what’s best for Britain in the Brexit process get the extra support they need to win,” said Miller.
“If the deal the next government negotiates doesn’t match up to our current terms, MPs should do what’s best for Britain and reject it.”
Miller has just stated in her own word that if the government doesn’t conform to her and her group’s goals then those MPs she helps get to power should work against the deal by rejecting it. Now I’m not a Leave campaigner but unlike Miller I can recognise and understand that my view points were not those of the majority of the electorate. It was a democratic vote and the people of Britain made their decision, now we need to push through that vote and make the best of it. Miller however has decided her view point was more important and now she wants to put money behind achieving her own beliefs over that of the people of Britain by making it difficult, impossible even if she really gets her own way, for the government to make good on the vote.
Miller says this campaign will be apolitical and could in theory support candidates of any party, just so long as they desire to defeat Brexit.
In reality though it is likely the recipients of her endorsements and money will be either Labour or Liberal Democrat candidates who oppose Brexit and are poised to threaten Conservative MPs who support the Prime Minister’s approach.
Theresa May called the election because she desires “unity here in Westminster” on the issue of Brexit and that this election would prove there would be no denying the result of the referendum and that there would be “no turning back”.
Yet campaigners like Miller are arguing that the referendum did not actually give the government the mandate to pursue Brexit, and that it is undemocratic for the government to activate article 50 before the terms of any negotiated deal are known. They are under the belief that the timing of the snap election is designed to snuff out their ability to fight them.
“There isn’t time to organise a formal progressive alliance,” Miller told the Guardian when explaining her tactical voting strategy. “We have to do what we can in the time available. We need to re-energise people about the importance of voting tactically …We stand for democracy in this country and a constitution that respects proper balance of powers and doesn’t railroad the country into an extreme Brexit.”
I support Miller for her desire to represent the people who voted Remain and their desire to maintain close links to the mainland and ensure Britain is not left wallowing in an economic cloud of darkness and despair, but I don’t think the woman understands the word democracy. The people of Britain decided the fate of this country, now is the time to unite and work together, we should not be working with and throwing money at people who will fight the government and try and tear apart any deal we are given, that however is the road Miller has taken and I cannot help but see her as a terrible liability for the process of Brexit. But then again the role of saboteur is the one she wants to take and to that end she is doing a sterling job.