Chance of halting Brexit now near 50:50, says main campaigner

LONDON (Reuters) – Opponents of Britain’s exit from the European Union are making ready a significant marketing campaign they are saying now has near a 50:50 probability of stopping Brexit by blocking Prime Minister Theresa May’s divorce deal, a number one pro-EU campaigner stated.

With Britain scheduled to depart the EU in March 2019, opponents of Brexit are exploring varied methods to cease what they are saying is Britain’s greatest mistake since World War Two.

‘Best for Britain’, a marketing campaign group which acquired a 400,000 pound donation from billionaire financier George Soros final 12 months, hopes to persuade lawmakers within the 650-seat parliament to dam the withdrawal deal May goals to deliver again from Brussels in October.

“Brexit can be stopped if people want it to be stopped,” the group’s chief govt officer, Eloise Todd, instructed Reuters within the basement of a former Victorian bakery in central London. “It is absolutely not over yet.”

Blocking any deal May manages to clinch with the EU would plunge British politics into disaster with unsure penalties for Brexit, for the world’s sixth largest financial system, and for the destiny of London, the one global monetary hub to rival New York.

But Todd, 41, and different campaigners hope this might set off a rerun of the June 2016 EU referendum, this time providing voters the choice of leaving on the phrases of May’s deal or staying in a reformed EU.

In the 2016 referendum, 51.9 p.c voted to depart the EU whereas 48.1 p.c voted to remain.

May, who voted to remain within the EU, is because of set out “the way forward” for Brexit subsequent week after a gathering on Thursday with high aides that tried to resolve deep variations inside her ruling Conservative Party over technique.

May has stated there might be no second referendum on Brexit.

Opinion polls to date present little signal of a significant change of temper amongst voters, although one current ballot recommended there could also be a small majority for remaining within the EU.

Asked how possible it was for Brexit to be stopped, Todd stated: “We are sort of getting towards the 45 percent mark, we are nudging on 50:50 – we are not quite there yet.”

Eloise Todd, CEO of Best for Britain, poses for a photograph at their workplaces in London, Britain February 22, 2018. Picture taken February 22, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Summers

She stated the percentages of stopping Brexit had modified from only a 1 in 10 probability when she began the job in early 2017.


“The mood is changing – it is probably about even right now. The country is changing…,” she stated, including that the group was holding occasions throughout Britain and campaigning on social media. It plans an promoting blitz in coming weeks to persuade voters to foyer their members of parliament to vote towards Brexit.

While May casts the Brexit referendum outcome as a vote towards immigration, Todd stated it had uncovered a deeper malaise that has left giant swathes of the inhabitants minimize off from booming financial development in London and southern England.

Eloise Todd, CEO of Best for Britain, poses for a photograph at their workplaces in London, Britain February 22, 2018. Picture taken February 22, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Summers

“Our country is in pretty bad shape,” stated Todd, a former worldwide improvement employee from the northern English metropolis of Hull.

Todd stated Britain’s political and business elite had didn’t unfold wealth and alternative extra broadly throughout the nation.

“Either you just go to London to make your fortune like Dick Whittington or you stay where you are and you’re stuck,” she stated, alluding to an previous folklore story of a poor younger man from the provinces who turns into rich within the capital and finally turns into Lord Mayor of London.

Todd urged business leaders against Brexit to talk out.

When the pro-Brexit Daily Telegraph newspaper reported Soros’s donation, some Brexiteers accused him of plotting a “coup” towards British democracy.

“It is really important that people are not intimidated into not speaking up,” Todd stated.

“George Soros has fought for democracy across the world and we are proud to receive money from him and our other donors. We operate within every rule that is ascribed to us. We have never hidden it.”

‘Best for Britain’ has raised practically 200,000 kilos in lower than two weeks in a crowdfunding marketing campaign. Soros has pledged to match 100,000 kilos of that whereas one other donor, personal fairness investor Stephen Peel, has pledged to do the identical, she stated.

“We have an ambitious plan that is multiple seven figures. We think we need millions to win this fight,” Todd stated.

Writing by Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Gareth Jones

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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