Anyone who thinks there's another possibility at this point is fooling themselves.
That's not true. For one the house of commons could either decide a vote of no confidence again, the second being a general election, and the other option being revoking article 50 ...
A vote of no confidence wouldn't stop a no deal Brexit. A general election is unlikely, but if it happened, it wouldn't stop a no deal Brexit because even a Lib Dem majority couldn't overturn the first referendum without a second referendum, I mean I guess they could since you guys don't have a constitution to protect your referendums or anything so all that holds your laws together are norms and precedents, but still, I just can't seriously entertain this possibility. Revoking article 50 is remaining, which goes against the first referendum, and thus isn't possible. I suppose they could revoke it and then reinvoke it to get around the need for unanimous support from every EU country for a delay, but I don't see that being accepted and I don't see even your government as being stupid enough to try that.
I don't think there'd even be need for time to campaign, just enough to organize the vote and advertise that it was happening.
There is no consensus for what the format of a second referendum would be and campaigning is absolutely mandatory since it is THE LAW ... (a minimum of at least 10 weeks and even then that length would be heavily criticized by the Electoral Commission)
I see. Didn't know that. So then they would definitely need to ask the EU for an extension. They better get on that if they want to do a second referendum then. Waiting until March 29th to ask for an extension to allow for a referendum would be really messy.
Even the No Dealers and May's Dealers would benefit here, as there are some who would rather leave in some way, shape, or form even if it isn't their preferred way, and there are some who would rather remain than have a Brexit they don't want. I've seen all of these opinions expressed at least once since the first referendum, and a second referendum where all three are a possibility and people get to rank their preferences is much more fair than a simple yes or no vote. A ranked choice referendum would be the fairest way to do things, in my opinion, because not only is it more democratic, it's just a better, more legitimate referendum, that more accurately takes the people's opinion. So the people saying that a second referendum isn't fair because they're afraid their first referendum would be invalidated, the truth is that it wouldn't. In fact, the most likely outcomes would be a very similar number of leavers and remainers voting for a leave option or the remain option respectively for their first choice, likely not changing the outcome there, but with some possibility of the second choice coming into play and deciding what kind of Leave the UK really wants, or if the UK as a whole feels torn on leaving and only wants to do so if it can leave a certain way. I suppose there's also a chance that Remain would get over 50% on the first round and thus make the ranking unecessary, but I doubt it, honestly. If it did, it would be really close, but hopefully the second round would still be counted anyway so that the UK would get to see exactly how much consensus is formed by the second round. For all you know, maybe once the second choice is selected, one choice will have a supermajority, and the UK will feel a bit better about their choice since it wouldn't feel as much like one half the country dragged the other half into something they hated. I'd imagine that such a supermajority would be possible for any of the three choices.
@Bold Actually, the critics would be correct that it isn't fair in principle if a supposed second referendum included a remain option which led to a remain vote in contrast to a leave vote with the first referendum since the result of the first referendum wouldn't be respected when it has yet to be enacted ...
If you actually cared about respecting the result of the first referendum then a remain option shouldn't even be included in a potential second referendum and should be just either May's deal, no deal or another possible way to leave. Democracy is not all about holding votes but it's also about coming to terms with the consequences that comes with it ...
As I said, the first referendum would still be respected because all a ranked choice referendum would do is get a more accurate read of what the people wanted with the first referendum. If they simply redid the first referendum exactly as it was done then in a second referendum, I'd agree with you here.
"It wouldn't feel as much like one half the country dragged the other half into something they hated"
This view is incompatible with the consequences of democracy. If it were that simple then we wouldn't need a democracy and would instead opt for unity. A democracy exists solely to separate the mandate from the opposition ...
I understand that the point of democracy is to decide action based on incomplete agreement of the people, and that to live in a democracy is to agree to go along with the consequences of not always being on the side of the broader consensus, but the health of democracy is dependent upon the respect of the people for democracy, and when opinion is so evenly split on matters of such importance to the country, it's just not healthy for the democracy. When it is possible to alter the democratic mechanisms to create broader consensus among the populace, it should be done. There's no need to demand methods that create less consensus. I'm not suggesting unity for unity's sake, if that's all I wanted I'd ask for a dictatorship. I'm asking for democratic unity for democracy's sake. There's no harm, only good, in designing better democratic mechanisms to create broader democratic consensus. A democracy does exist to separate the mandate from the opposition, but it also exists to create the best possible mandate that minimizes opposition and creates the broadest consensus possible so as to create the strongest mandate possible.
As I said before, I'd be cheering for Remain, but like I also said, I'm from the US so it's not something I directly have a stake in. But I hate seeing you guys so torn up over it, so if anything, I'd prefer any outcome of a second, ranked-choice referendum to simply crashing out with no deal when you run out of time, or parliament miraculously deciding on a deal that the EU also accepts before the deadline (or an extended deadline, since the EU also said they'd accept an extension until the European elections so long as the UK had a direction they wanted to go in during the extra time that could arrive at a new deal). The latter would happen too fast and leave too many unhappy, and splinter the UK further, and no deal would make Remainers and anyone that wanted some kind of deal unhappy and generally make everyone feel hopeless, like they can't count on their government at all, and even the hard Brexiteers would be mad that all that time was wasted arguing over a deal when trade deals could have been worked on and prepared in time to be ready so that when Brexit happened the UK had a system of trade deals already in place. The second referendum, if it is ranked choice, just seems like it would have the most potential to make the most people happy, while the current course is by all accounts a disaster and making as many people as possible unhappy.
The hard brexiteers were already negotiating trade deals across the world. The only party that weren't willing to negotiate before the exit was the EU and solely the EU because they wanted a withdrawal agreement ...
Well you haven't made much progress there, have you? You can't seriously suggest the hard Brexiteers wouldn't rather have had a hard Brexit be the option on the first referendum and have won that instead, so as to have the whole government commited to a hard Brexit and thus fully invested in working towards making the best hard Brexit possible. A much better system of trade deals would have been possible by now if you had the whole force of the UK government committed to it from the beginning. A second referendum with ranked choice voting would make a hard Brexit a real possibility, and a No Deal referendum result under the circumstances I described may even justify a further extension on Brexit to allow for the negotiation of such trade deals, since there would be no pretenses of a withdrawal agreement being a possibility, as the hard Brexit would be mandated.
Just as America came to terms with Trump it is now time for Britain's turn to come to terms with Brexit ...
America has hardly come to terms with their current president. He's being investigated in various ways and may eventually be impeached. And especially if the American people on the whole want him impeached, he should be impeached. Just as if the people of the UK want to cancel Brexit, they should be allowed to do so. I don't understand what the Brexiteers are so afraid of here. They've shown they can win before. Worst case scenario for them, Remain wins, UKIP reforms, this time with Brexiteers having gained valuable experience in what can go wrong, so that they can form better plans for a hard Brexit with which to campaign on. They'd formulate more viable Brexit plans and know more about how to sell those plans to the people. Any hard Brexit that resulted from an eventual UKIP victory would be better informed and proceed much more smoothly than the current fiasco. Every way I look at this it just seems like it would be better for everyone, and for democracy as a whole.