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Question Time viewers praise ‘wonderfully eloquent’ 16-year-old audience member

A teenager who wowed Question Time viewers with her ‘wonderfully eloquent’ assessment of Brexit is using her new platform to push for votes at 16.

The 16-year-old, a member of Labour’s youth wing, delivered a damning assessment of ‘party putting itself first before the country’ when she appeared on the BBC programme in Belfast last night. 

She proposed an extension and a return to representative democracy through a general election, ‘because that’s what this country was built on’. 



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The teenager said: ‘David Cameron made the referendum policy because he didn’t want to risk losing 10 or 15 seats to Ukip.

‘And look where it has got us.

The 16-year-old delivered a damning assessment of ‘party putting itself before the country’ when she appeared on the BBC programme

Broadcaster Richard Bacon tweeted: 'When they ask her one day what she’d say to her 16 year old self, she’ll say, “nothing really, nailed it”'

Broadcaster Richard Bacon tweeted: ‘When they ask her one day what she’d say to her 16 year old self, she’ll say, “nothing really, nailed it”’

Actress Amanda Abbington, known for playing Miss Mardle in Mr Selfridge and Mary Morstan in BBC's Sherlock, called the teenager 'f****** wonderful'

Actress Amanda Abbington, known for playing Miss Mardle in Mr Selfridge and Mary Morstan in BBC’s Sherlock, called the teenager ‘f****** wonderful’

‘This has always been because of the Tory Party playing party politics with issues that are going to be huge generational changes for all of us.

‘I am 16 years old. I didn’t get a say in Brexit and I won’t get a say in it, because there is not going to be a second referendum as things stand. 

‘Either way I think what we have to face is this is not an issue of parties not coming together, this is not an issue of direct democracy – a People’s Vote being able to solve where it failed in the first place.

‘What we need to look at is the fact that this is all caused by a party putting itself first before the country it is trying to govern.’ 

On the panel for Question Time last night were Conservative minister Tobias Ellwood, Welsh Labour Party MP Nick Thomas-Symonds, DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson, Sinn Féin politician John O'Dowd and Polly Mackenzie, Chief Executive of Demos.

On the panel for Question Time last night were Conservative minister Tobias Ellwood, Welsh Labour Party MP Nick Thomas-Symonds, DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson, Sinn Féin politician John O’Dowd and Polly Mackenzie, Chief Executive of Demos.

The teenager said: 'I am 16 years old. I didn't get a say in Brexit and I won't get a say in it, because there is not going to be a second referendum as things stand'

The teenager said: ‘I am 16 years old. I didn’t get a say in Brexit and I won’t get a say in it, because there is not going to be a second referendum as things stand’

The teenager drew praise on social media for her calm approach and eloquence, with some users calling for her to be made Prime Minister

The teenager drew praise on social media for her calm approach and eloquence, with some users calling for her to be made Prime Minister



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April Dwyer called the 16-year-old's comments 'extremely articulate', adding that 'the young are our future'

April Dwyer called the 16-year-old’s comments ‘extremely articulate’, adding that ‘the young are our future’

Twitter user @RossSPurves responded to the clip, citing it as an example of why 16-year-olds should have the vote

Twitter user @RossSPurves responded to the clip, citing it as an example of why 16-year-olds should have the vote

‘What we need to do is not look back to a People’s Vote, we need to look at a further extension, and we need to solve this where it all should have started –  and where this could have been avoided in the first place: By going back to a general election and representative democracy, because that’s what this country was built on.’

The teenager drew praise on social media for her calm approach and eloquence, with some users calling for her to be made Prime Minister. 

A Twitter account using the name ‘Amelia’ was set up last night. In its bio the user describes herself as ‘the 16 year old off question time. member @younglabouruk. big lefty (libsoc). vegetarian. not a big fan of the eu but even less of a fan of this government.’  

Amelia, who says she wants to study French at university, used her new platform to advocate for the voting age being lowered, retweeting a post from the Votes at 16 Campaign with the comment: ‘If you were in any way impressed, inspired or even willing to listen to what I said, please support this amazing campaign. There are millions of other youth voices that don’t have the opportunity I had to speak, and we have things to say.’ 

She also tweeted that she was ‘DEFINITELY dreaming’, revealing that Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell was following her after a clip of her statement drew 1.6million views on Twitter.  

Amelia tweeted that she was 'DEFINITELY dreaming', revealing that Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell was following her

Amelia tweeted that she was ‘DEFINITELY dreaming’, revealing that Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell was following her

Amelia used her new platform to advocate for the voting age being reduced to 16

Amelia used her new platform to advocate for the voting age being reduced to 16

One social media user tweeted at Amelia, telling her that she felt secure knowing her 11-year-old son would be in good hands with her representation.

The account responded: ‘This means so much, not just to me but to the youth who often feel so unheard and discouraged. Thank you.’

One critic of the teenager’s comments said ‘referendums have always been a part of British democracy,’ adding that David Cameron ‘did the country a great turn – and we proved it by voting for LEAVE!’

Amelia responded: ‘I’m hugely in favour of direct democracy but for it to work, you need an established system based on it like Switzerland has or even one like Ireland, where there is a particular CODE for how they’re held preventing problems like misinformation…

Twitter user @cbicknellmusic said the girl 'absolutely nails it' in her assessment

Twitter user @cbicknellmusic said the girl ‘absolutely nails it’ in her assessment

Alice Woolley said 'it's audience members who have the most wisdom' on Question Time audiences

Alice Woolley said ‘it’s audience members who have the most wisdom’ on Question Time audiences

‘And all the others that led to the mess that was the brexit ref and the disgraceful fudging of the AV referendum. Without reform and legislation to set out the way we do it – which I TOTALLY support – we can’t continue to hold referenda like this, wide open to manipulation.’    

On the panel for Question Time last night were Conservative minister Tobias Ellwood, Welsh Labour Party MP Nick Thomas-Symonds, DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson, Sinn Féin politician John O’Dowd and Polly Mackenzie, Chief Executive of Demos.

Responding to the clip of Amelia, broadcaster Richard Bacon tweeted: ‘When they ask her one day what she’d say to her 16 year old self, she’ll say, “nothing really, nailed it”.’

One Twitter user said: ‘My goodness she was brilliant- our fab youth . Let’s listen to them #bbcqt.’

'This young lady making more sense than any politician in the past two years,' wrote one user

‘This young lady making more sense than any politician in the past two years,’ wrote one user

Another said: ‘Wonderfully eloquent young lady she can teach the government a thing or two!’

One said: ‘I showed the clip to my nan and she started to cry and said “This young lady is so spot on, I just wish the rest of my generation and the one after me would listen to the young more. They are our future”.’

Others called for the teenager to be made PM – with one person saying ‘at least give her the vote’.

One user said: ‘You know when people say that 16 year olds shouldn’t vote because they don’t know what they’re voting for? Well, er, this. This girl absolutley nails it.’ 

Her comments were not universally praised, however. 

One responding tweet read: ‘No. The call for a referendum on EU membership started long before Cameron. We voted. The people spoke. We’re leaving. Get on board. #Brexit.’ 

  • Do you know the Question Time teenager? Email henry.martin@mailonline.co.uk 

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