Dear Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn,
I am sure that you are both getting a lot of advice from different people about what to do this morning. In this open letter, I simply offer my own thoughts in what I believe to be the common interest of our country at this critical time.
I know you both love this great nation of ours. I hope that this morning and in the coming weeks you will both be able to put partisanship to one side (at least to a degree!) and that our country will have the leadership it needs going into this critical period of negotiations.
Members of our nation have obviously voted on both sides of this election with good conscience. It is so important that we now show that our British values hold us together more strongly than our political differences divide us. Please know that many are praying for you both today.
I do not write because I think I have anything special to contribute, but just because what is outlined below just seems like the most sensible approach to me for the good of the country. I suspect that I may be voicing the thoughts of some others in the electorate who has decided in its wisdom not to give either of you a majority. Others may have different ideas about what should happen next. These are mine:
1. Jeremy, please accept that as much as you have done incredibly well you have not won the election. The maths just doesn’t add up.
2. I accept that it is probably too much to ask you both to create an unprecedented government of national unity, although that would serve our country best at a time when BREXIT is such a pressing issue. Instead of such an approach can I suggest the following:
3. Theresa, please do not be tempted to resign. It is the last thing we need. You have a responsibility to see BREXIT through. Resolve that you will do this, then if your party thinks it best at a later date, you can always make way when the deal is done.4. Theresa, try to do a formal deal with the DUP so you have a proper majority to run the country. This may be tough to swallow, but anything less will surely leave you vulnerable.
5. On BREXIT, please Theresa and Jeremy, try and do a deal with each other and ideally the SNP to agree a common set of principles to guide the negotiations. We should go into these negotiations, in my view, in a strong position, and with a massive majority supporting our countries negotiating position (proved by a vote in the House of Commons). This matter is too important to become a victim of party politics and if ever there is an issue calling for a national unity approach it is surely this one.
6. Finally Theresa, please on national issues determine that you will lead in a more inclusive way. Incorporate some of the better more popular domestic ideas put forward by Labour and soften some of your own policies. Recognize you do not have authority to enact everything in your manifesto, some of which has proven unpopular. I hope that parliament will be a format where these important domestic issues can be addressed and consensus built where possible.
With best wishes to both of you.