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How to vote in the European elections? Our panel’s verdicts

3 17 0
22.05.2019

Gaby Hinsliff: There’s only one real question here. Remainers aren’t as powerless as they feel

This may be as close as we ever get to a second referendum. You never know, obviously; even though there’s barely enough time to organise one before October and not enough support for it in parliament, miracles can happen. But if they don’t then this Thursday could be our last chance for a crystal clear verdict on three years of stumbling towards disaster. Do you want Brexit at any price, a no-deal Brexit if necessary now Theresa May’s deal is dying, or not?

For however much Labour tries to pretend it’s really about renationalising things or kicking out the Tories, this isn’t a domestic election and there’s only one real question here. The lesson of the local elections – when Jeremy Corbyn seemingly interpreted a Liberal Democrat resurrection as a mandate to carry on regardless – is there’s no room for ambiguity. If you want to remain, revoke, vote again or do anything but be swept inexorably over the waterfall then go Liberal Democrats, Greens, Change UK in England, and SNP or Plaid Cymru in Scotland or Wales. If tactical voting advice seems baffling, then vote with your heart. Reward the Lib Dems’ courage in resisting Brexit when nobody else was, or the Greens for doing the same on the climate emergency, or Change UK for at least trying to shake their old parties out of it; whatever moves you.

It’s trickier for liberal leavers, who only really wanted something Norway-ish and are now aghast at where we’ve ended up. No party fully represents them.

But remainers aren’t as powerless as they feel. You can’t directly change the path of Brexit on Thursday – that’s not within MEPs’ power – but your vote can push Westminster parties in the direction you want them to go. Ask leavers; they’ve been doing it for decades.

• Gaby Hinsliff is a Guardian columnist

Aditya Chakrabortty: The big aim is to drive out the scourge of Faragism. I’ll be voting Labour

Let’s be honest about what this election is about. It’s not a rerun of the EU referendum, even though the fervent leavers and remainers would love to make it so. Nor, despite the best efforts of the political commentators, is it some kind of national verdict on the state of our politics. It is not to elect representatives for Westminster or the local council. Instead, it’s to send representatives to a parliament that most of us pay zero attention to most of the time. These are elections we weren’t meant to hold, for positions that aren’t meant to last five years. In normal times, two out of three British voters don’t even bother to go to........

© The Guardian