Rethink time? Britons battle with the immediate consequences of Brexit

Cameron’s decision to resign without initiating the process of leaving the EU has translated into a major conundrum for Brexit campaigners.

FP Staff June 27, 2016 13:26:50 IST
Rethink time? Britons battle with the immediate consequences of Brexit

The realisation of the catastrophic effects that the ‘Brexit’ vote might have is slowly seeping in the people of Britain. While the number of Google searches for questions like ‘What happens if we leave the leave the EU?’ almost tripled eight hours after the polls closed, three million Britons have signed the petition calling for a second referendum.

An article in The Daily Mail explains what exactly Brexit means and the reactions of the readers to it. For an average Briton, it would mean expensive holidays and no right to work, travel or study in the EU. In the comments section of the article, people have alleged that there was little information available to them about the consequences of a ‘leave’ vote. One of them even confessed to voting “with our heart” because they thought the remain camp was just “scare mongering”.

Rethink time Britons battle with the immediate consequences of Brexit

Leave camp celebrate their win after the referendum. AP

William Oliver Healey, a campaigner for Brexit has admitted that he set up the online petition for the second referendum, reported The Independent . The petition asks for another EU referendum if the remain or leave vote is less than 60% based on a turnout of less than 75%. While he says that it was made about a month ago when the chances of Leave camp winning were very slim, Britons are turning to this petition to get another chance to vote for ‘Remain’.

People who have signed the petition and are regretting the 52 percent ‘leave’ vote see a waning ray a hope after Prime Minister David Cameron’s resignation speech. On Friday, Cameron left the task of invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty to his successor. It is important because it lays down the procedure of how a member state leaves the EU.

Cameron reiterated throughout the campaign process that Article 50 would be invoked immediately if Britain voted for a Brexit, according to The Guardian. By not doing so and instead handing over the job to the next Prime Minister, Cameron has ignited some hope in the Britons who are regretting their leave vote.

Cameron’s decision to resign without initiating the process of leaving the EU has translated into a major conundrum for Brexit campaigners.

Boris Johnson, who fiercely campaigned for a Brexit says there is “no need for haste” in invoking Article 50 to start the exit negotiations, according to The Guardian. This might also mean that the longer the Article 50 notification is put off, the greater the chance that it will never be made, The Guardian quoted writer David Allen Green as saying.

A remark from the comments section of The Guardian points out that Johnson may be caught in a quandary. If he runs for leadership and does not follow through on Article 50, 'he is finished,' the comment observes. It also argues that Johnson will face a difficult situation if he pulls out of the leadership, or if he has to deal with the chaotic aftermath of Britain exiting the EU.

Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, has warned that the Scottish parliament can veto Brexit. Westminster requires a legislative consent motion to enact Brexit from the Scotland parliament because it impacts it directly, reported The Telegraph.

If Sturgeon manages to veto Brexit, it will serve as a relief to the impasse reached in Britain over the invoking of Article 50 of the Lisbon treaty.

It will also act as a breather for Johnson, who can then conveniently run for the post of Prime Minister. It will also save a large number of Britons from going through a situation where they regret their decision on the referendum. However, Sturgeon will have to act soon because an impatient EU wants Britain to invoke Article 50 by Tuesday.

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