In 2004, the North East of England voted to reject a devolution deal they had been offered by the Labour government at the time. The Conservative Party have just given them it anyway.
The 2004 North East Devolution referendum was held at the wishes of the Labour government at the time, the question was whether or not to establish an elected assembly for the region and whether or not the structure of the local government should be reorganised.
The result was a shock, with 77.93% of people voting No, on a turnout of 47.71%, not a single council area voted Yes. It was a blow to the Labour government, which had further plans for devolution but scrapped them after this defeat. The message was clear, the North East didn’t want more politicians, the ones they already had weren’t good enough. After the results were announced, the No campaign chairman John Elliot told the crowd in his victory speech that a simple message had been sent ‘politicians have got to raise their game‘.
So, even though the North East voted to reject devolution in 2004, the Conservative government announced a devolution deal on the 28th of December to create a new regional mayor with new powers and committed £1.4 billion to the region over the next 30 years. No one voted for this, no one asked for this, but the North East is getting it anyway.
Likewise, no one has voted for the other six devolution deals that Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove has agreed this year.
Local leaders and mayors across the region welcomed the agreement, of course, they would, it gives them more power, more titles, more money and more jobs. The deal will be subject to local consultation, whatever that means, and parliamentary approval. The current Mayor of the North of Tyne Combined Authority, Jamie Driscoll, is hoping to be Labour’s candidate for the new North East Mayoral Combined Authority. Jamie is a member of the radical left-wing group Momentum, and his campaign was supported by radical leftists such as John McDonnell, Noam Chomsky, Paul Mason, Clive Lewis and Laura Pidcock. Isn’t it great, that the Conservative Party in their incompetence are creating yet more positions for their opposition to occupy and further ruin the country?
If you thought we lived in a democracy, you are sadly mistaken, this deal is yet another example of the British ruling class ignoring the votes and wishes of the British people. They tried with all their might to ignore the vote to leave the European Union, they have for decades ignored their own election pledges to reduce immigration, they have dragged the country into wars we wanted no part of and now they are forcing devolution on a country that does not want nor need it.
Because the British media is the worst in the developed world, we can’t find a single major journalism outlet that has written about the fact that the Conservative Party are ignoring a referendum result. The BBC report is basically a copy and paste of the government press release. We also cannot seem to find a media outlet that has asked Mr Gove why he seems to think it is ok to ignore a referendum result. We have therefore asked Mr Gove for a comment, if we receive one, this article will be updated.
Remember this blatant disregard of a referendum result and forcing of devolution when the Conservatives vote against Labour’s proposed devolution reforms around 2025. They will not have a leg to stand on.
The British people want better governance from Westminster politicians, they do not want or need it to be farmed out to even more third-raters in their own region. They certainly don’t take kindly to being ignored either.