Let’s celebrate two of the unsung heroes of Brexit: Gina Miller and Jolyon Maugham QC!
Nobody remembers them today, of course. Like David Gauke, Andrew Adonis, Sam Gymiah, and all the other bizarre anomalous creatures who rose briefly to prominence during the Brexit wars, their destiny from now on is, at best, to be seen drinking liquidised kangaroo testicles on future series of I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here — or, at worst, to end up as the subject of tricky pub quiz trivia questions which not even the hardcore quizzers will get right.
But before they disappear forever down the plughole of history, let us pause briefly to toast their vital contribution to Brexit.
Gina Miller, you’ll dimly recall, was the posh, rich financier woman who appeared from nowhere with her wodges of City cash and her gobby relentlessness, determined to pull every trick in the book to try prevent all those plebby, uneducated people who voted for Brexit from getting their democratically expressed wish.
Jolyon Maugham QC was the working-class lad who triumphed over his awkward name and humble background as natural son of the Old Etonian author David Benedictus to earn many hundreds of thousands of pounds a year from his windmill home as arguably the best known left-wing barrister on Twitter.
Both were thorns in the side of the Brexit movement and for a time it seemed as if they might stymie Brexit altogether.
Earlier this year, when he was still a thing, Maugham was the subject of an admiring profile in Counsel Magazine:
For the past two-and-a-half years, his main other interest has been Brexit. Along with The Good Law Project, the not-for-profit organisation he founded, Maugham has driven the legal debate on the issue since the referendum result.
He was involved in the early stages of the case that became Gina Miller’s successful Supreme Court challenge, forcing the Prime Minister to get approval from Parliament before formally notifying the EU of our departure.
Maugham then took the Electoral Commission to the High Court over what he saw as its inadequate investigation into Vote Leave’s campaign spending. Under pressure, the Commission agreed to look again and eventually referred the matter to the police.
Like a determined spaniel with a manky bit of fox-gnawed lamb’s bone it has found in the field, Maugham just refused to let go of his prey. Even when his prey was an actual working-class lad from the North-East whose only crime was to have ticked the wrong box on an ambiguous form to do with election spending limits, Maugham pressed on and on…
Happy Thursday! You can stick your trumped-up charges where the sun doesn't shine. https://t.co/DQwEu95EKF
— Darren Grimes (@darrengrimes_) September 19, 2019
But though Gina and Jolyon have received widespread mockery for the pettifogging, vindictive, anti-democratic antics since the 2016 Brexit referendum, I think the time has come to give credit where credit is due.
If Gina and Jolyon hadn’t fought so hard against Brexit it is a racing certainty that Theresa May’s utterly disastrous Brexit In Name Only “deal” with the EU would have passed through Parliament. May would likely be still prime minister. And Boris would be just a thwarted backbencher.
How delicious is the law of unintended consequences!
With hindsight, I think we can all now see that Brexit was inevitable — and that all the people who said that it wasn’t were fools, and that all who imagined they could stand in its way, only to end up being crushed by fortune’s wheel, were just a bunch of loser pillocks.
But if Gina Miller and Jolyon Maugham QC are loser pillocks — and they are! — then at least they are my favourite kind of loser pillock. The kind of loser pillock that deserves a pair of statues in Parliament Square, perhaps glaring bitterly towards the Palace of Westminster as they realise belatedly what they have achieved: they have ensured that Britain is going to get a much, much harder Brexit than it would have done without their meddling.
And for this, if nothing else, they deserve to be celebrated from this day to the ending of the world.
'Privileged' Gina Miller grew up with Communist dictator Fidel Castro coming to her house "to debate social justice" https://t.co/Yqh7liGNYi
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) May 11, 2017