Tag: David Cameron

Chicago Cubs and Brexit on the Same Day

The Chicago Cubs broke the “Billy Goat Curse” last night by winning the seventh and deciding game of the 2016 World Series.

Being a long-time fan of the Boston Red Sox, I understand a bit about what Cubs fans are feeling today. I felt the same mixture of happiness and relief when the Red Sox broke the “Curse of the Bambino” in 2004 to win the World Series for the first time since 1918, a stretch of 86 years between championships.

For Cubs fans it was longer. The Cubs had not been champions since 1908, a stretch of 108 years, or 39,466 days if you prefer.

Theodore Roosevelt was president when the Cubs won their last championship and New Mexico, Arizona, Hawaii and Alaska were not yet states.

The Cubs opponents, the Cleveland Indians, have not won a world series championship since 1948, the longest stretch of non-winning after the Cubs.

But, big as news of the Cubs victory is, it may not be the day’s big story, outside of Chicago.

Remember when the British electorate voted in a June referendum to leave the European Union?

A three judge panel on the London High Court said not so fast. The court ruling said that the British Parliament must first pass legislation approving Brexit (British exit from the European Union).

“The most fundamental rule of the U.K.’s constitution is that Parliament is sovereign and can make and unmake any law it chooses,” the judges wrote. “As an aspect of the sovereignty of Parliament it has been established for hundreds of years that the Crown — i.e. the Government of the day — cannot by exercise of prerogative powers override legislation enacted by Parliament.”

The Brexit Vote and US Elections

The recent UK vote on whether to remain in or leave the European Union, dubbed Brexit by UK media, may provide some insights into the upcoming US presidential election.

While the Brexit referendum result was a vote against stagnant economy, it was also a vote against the liberal immigration policies of the European Union and against the political establishment in the UK in general.

The Brexit referendum is not binding on the UK Parliament, however, and may be overturned in Westminster when the smoke clears.

David Cameron, Conservative and Jeremy Corbyn, Labour, the two major parties in UK politics, campaigned to remain. Now both look to be losing their position as party leader.

For that matter, Nicola Sturgeon, leader of the third largest parliamentary party, Scottish National, also campaigned to remain. But, Scotland voted 62% to 38% to remain in the European Union and may have another referendum to leave the United Kingdom if the UK moves forward to leave the EU.

The most visible face of the Leave movement was conservative politician Boris Johnson. Johnson has been in UK politics since 2001 as a Member of Parliament (2001-2008), Mayor of London (2008-2016) and Member of Parliament 2015 to present.

Johnson has been called Donald Trump with a Thesaurus and the similarities are many.

Like Trump, Johnson has been the focus of controversies that would have sunk most politicians but he came out of them with a smile on his face.

Like Trump, Johnson is considered boorish, racist and xenophobic by opponents, but he is able to reach across the political divide to attract non-conservative support.

Like Trump, Johnson’s support comes not from the political establishment in the Conservative Party, but rather from the rank and file voters.

In other words, like Trump, Johnson is a polarizing figure able to take advantage of the emotions of an angry electorate.

For that matter, Corbyn’s support comes from the rank and file Labour voters while the party establishment is far from solidly behind his leadership.