Tim Farron argues for second EU referendum on Brexit deal
Tim Farron will press the case for a second referendum on Brexit once the shape of the deal for Britain outside the European Union becomes clear.
The Liberal Democrats are today launching their priorities for the renegotiation process, including membership of the single market, securing the rights of EU nationals living in the UK, sustained research and investment opportunities for British universities, and “full rights” for financial services firms to access EU markets.
In a speech later, Mr Farron will present the Liberal Democrats as the “real opposition” to the Government’s plan to get the UK out of the EU, and the only party with a “comprehensive plan” for the UK’s relationship with the bloc.
He will stress, however, that he is not pushing for a “re-run” of June’s vote – and would only support another referendum once the negotiations are done.
“We demand that the British people should have their say on the final deal in a referendum and in the meantime we will hold the Conservative Brexit Government to account and fight for the best possible deal for Britain,” the Lib Dem leader will say.
“Voting for departure is not the same as voting for a destination.
“Brexit means Brexit but we still don’t know if that means £350m a week extra for the NHS, immigration controls or membership of the Single Market.
“This is not an attempt to re-run the first referendum; it is to enable the public to vote on the final deal, reflecting that there is disagreement even in the cabinet over every major aspect of Brexit.
“The British people should be allowed to choose what comes next, to ensure it is right for them, their families, their jobs and our country. Our relationship with Europe affects our economy, our security, climate change, our influence in the world and so much more.”