From the last Morning Jolt of the week:
The United Kingdom Shocks the World, Votes to Leave the EU
Some days, the news genuinely surprises you. Polling in the United Kingdom pointed to a narrow win for “remain” on the referendum, but last night, the British people voted to leave the European Union, and the stunned looks on the faces of the news anchors last night were a sight to behold.
We’re watching history before us, and perhaps the eventual end of the European Union: “It is the greatest disaster to befall the block in its 59-year history. The road ahead is unclear. No state has left the European Union before, and the rules for exit — contained in Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon – are brief.”
It’s likely other countries will hold referendums, too, and if the United Kingdom can leave, so can they:
“Hurrah for the British! Now it is our turn. Time for a Dutch referendum!” said Dutch firebrand Geert Wilders, chairman of the PVV party which is leading Dutch opinion polls. The jubilation was similar at the French National Front party of Marine Le Pen.
The editors of National Review lambasted the European Union as a “constitutional abortion” and urged the British people to depart:
The [EU predecessor, the European Coal and Steel Community] was designed to morph in stages from a limited industrial cartel into the present unified European “entity” of 28 member-states, which is supposedly neither a state (though it increasingly exhibits the attributes of statehood — flag, anthem, the power to sign treaties, etc.) nor a diplomatic body promoting cooperation and arbitration between independent states, but something new under the sun. Moreover, the lack of democratic accountability in its political arrangements underlined by Attlee was entirely by design. Its founders were suspicious of national sovereignty and popular passions, on which they blamed the recent war. They quite consciously set out to avoid submitting their grand design to democratic debate and the verdict of the voters. Instead it would proceed “functionally,” treaty by treaty, regulation by regulation, committee vote by committee vote, largely shielded from oversight, until one day the peoples of Europe would discover they were living under a new “European” government.
That bright new day has now dawned. Not coincidentally, their new government is one they can’t vote out. The European Commission, which has a virtual monopoly on proposing European legislation, never submits itself to elections. It is an appointed body of unknown bureaucrats and failed national politicians. Nor can British, French, or German parliaments reject or amend the Commission’s laws and regulations or the European court’s decisions. Nor can their voters repeal them. European law is superior to what are still quaintly called “national laws.” And if a national referendum (one of the few escape hatches in this panopticon) rejects a European decision, the voters are asked to vote again until they get it right. In short the EU’s defenses against democratic accountability are pretty watertight.
The dominos are falling quickly now; this is the end of Prime Minister David Cameron.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said Friday he will step down after voters moved to withdraw from the European Union.
The referendum was Cameron delivering on an election promise — but the premier had forcefully campaigned for Britain to remain in the EU.
The results served as an indictment of Britain’s government and immediately sparked speculation about Cameron’s political future.
Cameron said early Friday that the British people had spoken — and “their will must be respected.”
He said outside of Downing Street that he was “very proud” and “honored” to have led the country for six years — but that Britain now “must prepare for a negotiation” with the European Union, one that “will require strong, determined and committed leadership.”
“I do not think it would be right for me to be the captain that steers our country to its next destination,” he told reporters outside his Downing Street office.
Remember that referendum Scotland held in September 2014 about whether it wanted to remain in the United Kingdom? They’re almost certain to hold another, because Scotland voters really wanted to stay in the European Union.
Nicola Sturgeon said the Scottish Government will begin to prepare the legislation required to enable a second independence referendum to take place.
The First Minister said the option of a second independence referendum “must be on the table and it is on the table” after Scotland overwhelmingly voted to remain in the EU.
She said it is “highly likely” a second independence referendum will take place.
She added she will take “all possible steps and explore all options” to secure Scotland’s continuing place in the EU.
She said it is “democratically unacceptable” that Scotland would be taken out of the EU “against its will”.
It turns out the Spice Girls were a leading indicator. Who knew?
Arriving in Scotland, Trump mentioned how pleased he was with the vote’s results . . . and then spoke for 15 minutes about his golf course.