Time for MPS to use courage of their convictions
Glorious Gloucestershire Linda Cook took this picture of birds on a frozen Pittville Lake
✒ MICHAEL James (Letters, January 24) complains EU member states have been losing their sovereignty over the past decades.
He sees this as an explanation for the victory of the Leave campaign in 2016, although most analysts believe that had more to do with an anti-government protest.
Of course, it all depends on what you mean by sovereignty.
Theresa May, in her letter to Donald Tusk triggering Article 50 in March 2017, said the referendum was ‘a vote, as we see it, to restore our national selfdetermination.’
No mention of the need to restore our sovereignty.
That is because the government White Paper published at the same time stated ‘Parliament has remained sovereign throughout our membership of the EU.’
So even the Government acknowledges we have not lost our sovereignty.
Interesting to see that Mr James promotes the idea of a referendum on taxation policy.
So why not a referendum on Mrs May’s withdrawal agreement?
The Good Friday Agreement was only finalised after it was approved by a referendum in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
People can change their minds. Nobody has so far suggested that because there was a general election in 2017 there is no need ever to hold another one.
And to those who, for whatever reason, dislike the idea of another referendum, or who are dubious about very use of referendums for fundamental issues of state, I would point out that it was not the 2016 referendum that made the decision to leave the EU, but it was Parliament, when it passed the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Act on March 16, 2017.
So if Parliament is sovereign, then what Parliament has done, Parliament can undo.
Theresa May wants Parliament to change its mind and vote for her deal. But I would go further.
If Parliamentarians had the courage of their convictions, they would reject EU withdrawal altogether, since every version of withdrawal will result in this country being worse off.
Our MP has said on many occasions that he thinks that remaining in the EU is best for Britain.
Over to you, Mr Chalk. Mike Farmer Cheltenham