It is just three weeks since a referendum which the Leavers won by 52% to 48% nationally, and by 23,000-15,000 votes in North Dorset - which is a decisive margin, but not as 'resounding' as they have crowingly suggested in the local press.
It is also just thirteen months since the last election. In the words of Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron: 'The Conservatives have now plunged the UK into chaos. It is simply inconceivable that Theresa May should be crowned prime minister without even having won an election in her own party, let alone the country.'
Although North Dorset Liberal Democrats recognise the result of the referendum, and respect the views of those who voted to leave the EU, we feel that there must be an immediate election. The Conservatives must not be allowed to ignore the electorate. Their mandate to govern is shattered and lies in ruins; in addition - although they had a mandate to hold a referendum - it is questionable that they actually have one to negotiate our exit from the EU, particularly in light of reports of 'buyer's remorse' from some of those who voted for Brexit: when faced, for example, with a falling pound; a stock-market volatility and the announcement by firms like Lush of their plans to move some production from Poole to Düsseldorf.
Britain deserves better than this Tory stitch-up. Mrs. May has not set out an agenda, and has no right to govern. She has not won an election, and the public must have their say. She has been chosen as our Prime Minister by 329 Conservative MPs: this is not even remotely democratic. Is this really what Leave campaigners wanted when they talked about 'restoring sovereignty?'
The Liberal Democrats will set out an optimistic, positive plan for Britain. We will aim to stabilise the economy, improve education, deliver a new deal for our NHS, restore the green agenda, and - as a united party - once again secure Britain’s rightful place at the heart of Europe.
Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate,