By Charlie Kirk* – Newsweek
On Saturday, the British Parliament voted to withhold the deal proffered by Prime Minister Boris Johnson to finalize a United Kingdom withdrawal from the European Union, an effort famously known as “Brexit.” The vote by Parliament is a clear denial of the will of the British people, which was resoundingly expressed more than three years ago now at the ballot box.
The English Parliamentarian system of government is confusing to many Americans because of its seemingly chaotic nature. It is a bit like a cross between the American House of Representatives and the old commodities trading floor in Chicago. Despite what it may look like to us, it has been functioning in varying forms since 1265, and in nearly its current form since the “Glorious Revolution” of 1688, so it’s fair to say that overall, the system has served England well.
That is until Brexit. In 2016, the citizens of the United Kingdom voted 51.9% to 48.1% to leave the European Union. Why did they want to leave? Well, as Nigel Farage succinctly puts it, because the U.K. “wants its freedom back.” The EU has had the effect of neutering the national sovereignty of its member nations (28 in total), turning instead to a group of globalists in Brussels who ostensibly do what’s best for Europe regardless of whether or not that’s best for Britain (or France, or Spain, etc.).
While the deciding margin of the Brexit referendum was close, that is, as they say, why you count every last vote. Despite the polls and prognosticators telling the Brexiters they didn’t stand a chance, in the end “leave” won the day in what was, up to that point, the most shocking and defiant election in modern political history.
If the British people voted in defiance of the globalist elites, the politicians in the U.K. have since acted shamefully in defiance of the British people. From the outset, then Prime Minister and ultra-globalist, Theresa May, worked to subvert the will of the people by slow-walking and self-sabotaging her own efforts to negotiate a withdrawal from the EU. Along the way, the always-volatile British Parliament has behaved more like it was housed in Bedlam, not Westminster.
Perhaps the only more shocking election in modern political history is, of course, that of Donald Trump winning the Presidency of the United Sates. It too was a close election that defied the globalists—and the polls—but nevertheless rendered a clear, resounding result. Sound familiar? In fact, the U.S. and U.K. have in many ways traveled parallel paths ever since.
The 2016 U.S. presidential election was in many ways a test of our own originating ideals. Our system of government had become dominated by a permanent ruling class of politicians who picked and groomed their future members and successors, and an entrenched “deep state” bureaucracy that held far more functional control of government than was ever designed or imagined. Donald Trump, the citizen politician and consummate outsider, was endeavoring to see if someone could break through decades of rot that had formed around our founding core.
In arguably the biggest upset in American history, Donald Trump became the president that our Founding Fathers imagined, and in so doing established that the people could still be heard at the ballot box. But next he had to see if the will of the people could be expressed through governance. Unfortunately, much like the U.K.’s divorce from the EU, the answer to that question remains pending three years later.
The American people may have elected Donald Trump, but Democrats, the media, celebrities, activists, the “deep state,” and even some Republicans, have been attempting to stop him from governing ever since. The answer to the simple question of can the will of the people still be honored in a modern-day, free society is a resounding “sort of” in the United Sates and a wavering “no” in the United Kingdom. The individuals who run government are detached from the will of the people, and that seems to be the case whether they are lecturing the citizenry with a backdrop of Stars & Stripes or a Union Jack.
I would like to think that all of the delays in the United Kingdom with regard to their finalizing Brexit are simply a function of putting off an inevitable end, and that the fine people of that land will ultimately have their voices heard. Unfortunately, there is no reason to think they will not ultimately be able to “time out” the exit, thereby forcing the once proud United Kingdom to recede back into the shadows of globalist EU.
On the other hand, if Brexit does take place, it will be a resounding victory not only for the British people, but also for those of us in America fighting to uphold our own republic. Just as in 2016, we will once again look across the pond with renewed hope that our two proud nations will continue following parallel tracks, and the will of the people will overcome.
*Charlie Kirk is the founder and executive director of Turning Point USA, the nation’s largest and fastest growing conservative youth organization with a presence on over 1,400 college and high school campuses; he is also host of “The Charlie Kirk Show.”