Who can delay our exit?

This  week I am told the government may ask Parliament to debate and approve a Statutory Instrument under the EU Withdrawal Act to delay the date it comes into effect. The government also says Brexit will be delayed by the EU  Council offer to delay made to Mrs May. Some say EU law is still superior to UK law before the EU Withdrawal Act comes into effect and we therefore have to obey the Council offer.

I will oppose and vote against a delay SI. It also implies the UK government is not sure of its legal ground that it rightly wants Parliament to decide to delay. It clearly does not want to rely on the Council decision. There would at least be a conflict of laws if the UK Statute repealing all EU power on 29 March comes into effect whilst the Council assumes the delay is in force. Some will argue the whole point of the EU Withdrawal Act is to repeal The European Communities Act 1972 which is the foundation of all EU power over UK courts and government. What an irony if the EU tried  to assert its own  law over our very act of throwing off its powers.

To avoid legal doubt Eurosceptics advised the UK government to proceed to get us out under Treaty law by Article 50 and in domestic law by the EU Withdrawal Act. This latest ploy by Mrs May to sort of agree a delay runs the danger of muddling legal clarity. Parliament being full of Remain MPs may vote for delay to avoid testing this legal issue. It will only do so if Mrs May insists on   this unpopular  move against her own party, with many of us declining to support. She will need Labour votes to get it through. To be sure of delay the government will have to change UK law to do this.

 

 

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283 Comments

  1. Stephen Priest
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    I avoided the news over the weekend, becaus nearly all news was just speculation. The new week has started just like the last one ended.

    Virtually cabinet member and ex-cabinet member being announced as a possible “Caretaker Prime Minister”

    • Richard
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

      A suggested name For all those MPs who oppose this Betrayal SI: the Defenders of Brexit & Democracy group!

      Legal uncertainty is a terrible excuse for betraying Brexit. Presumably after 12 April the ECJ would decline to enforce the 12 April date anyway?

      • Hope
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:52 am | Permalink

        Lord Bew writes a good article in ca nhome about the fictitious backstop issue and how Merkel has the cat oout of the bag. But we all knew May was dishing nest in December 2017 to scuttle off to,agree the backstop scam. Johson claiming to be wilfully misled, Gove also conned. Not sure what Davis was up to.

        If May was to countenance no deal she would not have asked for an extension! Get real. May has shown the EU the UK wants to remain under any circumstance but what form of Remain has to be decided by indicative votes. The same with Hammond and Liddington. Hammond from the outset stated there would only be modest changes in leaving!

        The govt does not accept the referendum result and treated its manifesto as a dishonest means of getting in power to achieve it.

        JR, Time to bring down the govt.

      • Peter Wood
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:57 am | Permalink

        Are we missing the important message; the EU very quickly approved an extension to AVOID a ‘no deal’ Brexit. It’s also clear that they want Remainer options to be explored.
        IF we had a PM worthy of the title, we’d be making use of this.

        • Hope
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

          May confirmed today she has betrayed the nation and also betrayed your manifesto by taking nomdeal off the table without parliament,approval. It remains in statute for the benefit of the EU to exercise its right!

          Good grief could Mays,capitulation be any more humiliating for our,country.

          Associations need to withdraw support immediately. And you JR need to bring down this rotten government. As a party it is finished. So elections will matter not in the future.

      • rose
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:20 am | Permalink

        I understand Mr Barrow committed us to accepting the Council’s decision in a letter. Do we now have to save his and her faces by sacrificing Brexit?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:45 am | Permalink

          One assumes he did it on Orders from Hunt and May. If not he should surely be on a charge for gross negligence. If so Hunt and May deserve even more contempt heap upon them.

        • Richard
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

          Sir Martin Howe QC: “the argument is that the government cannot use prerogative powers to pre-empt the procedure laid down by Parliament. … she is willing to depart from constitutional precedent in order to pre-empt the tiresome necessity of a Parliamentary vote. If constitutional proprieties are not sufficient to rein in her conduct, the next step may have to be a legal challenge to the validity of the Sir Tim Barrow letter on similar grounds to the Gina Miller case.” https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/03/24/theresa-may-has-abandoned-constitutional-precedent-committing/

          • Richard
            Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

            inadvertently pre-empted the knighthood – sorry!

      • Hope
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:26 am | Permalink

        Democracy does not belong to May, nor a cabal of MPs who do not accept the result.

        • Chris
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

          Quite right, Hope, nor does it belong to the lily livered Brexiter MPs who are apparently now going to back May’s betrayal deal. Shame on those MPs if reports are true (Rees-Mogg, Johnson included).
          Thank goodness for the DUP. They have been principled throughout.

      • Merlin
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:49 am | Permalink

        Again, thanks to everyone for all the responses yesterday on why there should be no compromise on May’s deal.

        I feel this is crystalising into something useful.

        I think what is not appreciated is that I (and many others) regard No Deal as betraying the referendum in much the same way that many people think staying in the customs union is a betrayal of the referendum.

        In both cases, it was made clear in the leaflet and general discussion that we would leave with some Canada +++ type deal, and that we ‘risked’ No Deal. It was never claimed that No Deal was a preferred option or that was what the people were voting for. Our current mess seems to stem from the fact that to reach the Canada +++, we have to go through May’s deal which nobody likes.

        In short I don’t think either the Customs Union or No Deal respects the referendum. I suspect many people on this site feel that No Deal does respect the referendum and there is popular support for this view. And that’s why I’ve come to the conclusion we probably need either to go with May’s deal, or a straight Remain versus No Deal referendum (which is not a rerun of the last referendum as No Deal was not on the ballot). I loathe the idea of putting No Deal as an option but I can’t see any other way out of this mess.

        • Merlin
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:56 am | Permalink

          Also, good one Mancunius – you got me totally.

          I’ll admit ‘I want Brexit to happen’ was a poor choice of words.

          But I do think the referendum should be respected. So I’ll change that to ‘I begrudgingly want Brexit to happen.’ I just happen to believe that No Deal doesn’t respect the referendum as it was not what was promised.

    • oldtimer
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

      This article:
      https://www.conservativehome.com/platform/2019/03/bruce-newsom-mays-strategy-for-extending-article-50-is-unconstitutional.html
      challenges the legal basis for May’s extension. Martin Howe QC shares this view.

      May’s decsison must be challenged in Parliament and should be challenged in parliament as ultra viires.

    • Richard
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      A Civil Servant raises many serious legal, constitutional & ethical issues:
      “Stopping Brexit on 29th March by secondary legislation is legally questionable in itself. Given that there is a huge financial cost to an extension period … And you cannot raise new taxes, because in effect that is what May would be doing (VAT is part of the EU budget contribution), without primary legislation…
      One thinks that a certain judgment won by a certain Gina Miller might also contradict this plan. So let’s get an injunction and ask the Supreme Court also?
      But given everything we know of Theresa May, she is still likely to try this on and do her damnedest to drive the UK over a Brexit cliff-edge by trashing parliamentary process, the law and the constitution in order to make the country ungovernable so we scream for it to stop…
      This is not just a cynical abuse of power by a fanatical Remainer. It is a clear and present danger to the rule of law and the economic political and social fabric of the country

  2. Pominoz
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    So, its what’s known as ‘a bugger’s muddle’.

    No wonder, as evidenced in the comments about yesterday’s post, that there was confusion, certainly on my part, and in the minds of others, as to whether there was still a chance of getting out on 29th.

    Every legal means must be pursued to ensure that the Brexit date remains as 29th March 2019. It cannot be right that the EU can claim legal superiority over UK law in such a context, otherwise they could simply tie us in, entirely at their discretion, for as long as they want.

    Perhaps Mrs May can, this week, agree to ‘No Deal’ and then resign, simply to satisfy her own ego and prove to the UK and the World that she has succeeded as ‘promised’. Based on evidence to date, there is no doubt that she would find a way of getting ‘No Deal’ through, whatever the objections of other MPs.

    As ever, your views on this complex issue are greatly valued.

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:24 am | Permalink

      So we could find ourselves in the position that Brexiteers could bring a case to the Supreme Court the day after the 29th March that the UK has indeed left the EU, because the option to extend wasn’t confirmed by statute.
      I think you can be sure the government won’t leave that loophole open.

      • William Long
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:05 am | Permalink

        But this Government may not even have thought about it!

        • L Jones
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

          Don’t tell ’em, Pike!

      • acorn
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

        The definition of “Exit Day” (section 20(1) in the EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018, doesn’t actually mean what leavers think it means. “Exit Day” 29 March 2019 at 11pm GMT), is not necessarily the day the UK leaves the EU. It is the day the UK changes its laws to deal with the domestic consequences of leaving the EU and “retained EU law” comes into effect. It deliberately coincides with the article 50 leaving date, and that’s all.

        • NickC
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

          Acorn, Garbage. The EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018 ensures that the definition of “exit day” is the same date that the EU treaties cease to apply to the UK, by requiring an amendment to the 29 March date – see the Act’s Section 20/3 and 20/4.

          • acorn
            Posted March 28, 2019 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

            “Exit day” in the Act, is to inform the rest of the world (UN and international courts) about the novation of obligations in International Treaties from the EU to the UK. It does not have to be the same day that the UK leaves the EU.

            The drafters of the Act, knew that all the dates were not fixed; so, the Act was written to cover such. I am not sure if the SI in question is subject to a “commencement order” or it was just “laid”. JR will know.

    • Know-Dice
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      It might be worth revisiting Article 50:

      1. Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.

      And

      3. The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned , unanimously decides to extend this period.

      So,
      1. Could be said to hand back control to the Member State, in that it is a “constitutional” requirement that Parliament has a final say on whether the UK’s EU Withdrawal Act act can be changed other than by Parliament.

      And

      2. “In agreement with the Member State”, again only Parliament can agree this as shown by Gina Miller.

    • NickC
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Art50/3 states: “The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.”

      So the two year period was all along only one possibility. We could have been out in 12 months, or even 6, but it has been spun out by our Remain government. The EC has decided unanimously (remember when some commenters assured us that wouldn’t happen?) for an extension. It can just as easily decide upon a further extension.

      Until we actually repeal the ECA (1972) we are subject to Art50. Parliament has a Remain majority which wants to delay, and cheat us out of Leave. So Parliament will vote for the delay. So the delay will happen. “Exit day” governs when the ECA is repealed. Changing exit day to the 12th April delays the repeal of the ECA until 12th April.

      So we are leaving on the 12th April, not 29th March. But . . . Expect further incremental delays to slide us past (ie cheat on) the possibility of electing MEPs. You see even Remain MPs don’t want to own Remain, so they want to cover it up with more can-kicking.

    • graham1946
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      Sir John Says ‘some people’ think EU law is above UK law.

      Well, one of the ‘some people’ is Professor Catherine Barnard. professor of EU law at Trinity College Cambridge University Faculty of Law, and has stated this to be the case in public, so I think I’d take her view. She said on radio last night after giving an account of the law ‘Final analysis, the leave date is 12th April, not 29th March’.

      It seems from what she said that the SI would be a tidying up exercise, but not essential , as EU law would take its course anyway.

      I think we all know where this is going, we get to April 12th, another delay, then another and somehow we will be delayed and done out of putting up Candidates for the EU elections on some pretext or other so they don’t get any Leavers in there.

    • Andy
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

      I assumed because we are a Dualist State that what the EU said or didn’t was of no relevance to UK Domestic Law. However, if you look at the EU Withdrawl Act 2018 Section 20 Sub 3 it states ‘(3)Subsection (4) applies if the day or time on or at which the Treaties are to cease to apply to the United Kingdom in accordance with Article 50(3) of the Treaty on European Union is different from that specified in the definition of “exit day” in subsection (1).’ So the point is by granting an extension has this altered the date as per Article 50(3) and thus automatically altered the exit date in UK Law. That seems to be the Governments position.

      • Anonymous
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 1:10 am | Permalink

        Obviously not ‘our’ Andy. A different one.

      • NickC
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:24 am | Permalink

        Andy, Yes in essence. The EU “granting” an extension does not itself physically change the “exit day” date within the Act – that must be done by a Minister amending the date definition via a Statutory Instrument. The Minister (ie the government) will amend the date so the date of leaving the EU treaties becomes (the new) “exit day”. Currently 12th April, but ongoing . . . .

    • Tony Sharp
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

      May will not resign, she will not go honorably, she will not go if her No Deal PWA is defeated, she will not go if there is WTO Brexit no deal’ she will have to be removed by the DUP and ERG Abstaining or even Supporting a Vote of No Confidence by the Opposition and watching if the Payroll Tory MPs are prepared to get rid of her then or would rather fight a General Election under this Serial Loser and frankly, fanatic.

      She is determined to break the Conservative Party, like she has broken the 1922 Committee, like she has broken her own Cabinet. the only proinciple she has is to keep totally aligned with the EU come what May!

  3. What Tiler
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:50 am | Permalink

    For the love of whatsoever you lot hold sacred, just effin’ leave!

    • Mark B
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:59 am | Permalink

      And so say us all friend, and so say us all.

    • NickC
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:38 am | Permalink

      It will get worse than this unless Theresa May is ousted.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:53 am | Permalink

        It will get worse anyway even after she goes, thanks to the appalling mess this incompetent, dishonest, socialist, excuse for a PM or indeed excuse for a person will leave behind.

        All she had to do was deliver her manifesto and leave, not deliver a new straight jacket treaty deal that is even worse than remain. Presenting the leavers with two totally unacceptable options.

        Just go woman.

      • a-tracy
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

        How can they oust her Nick, who could they put in her place, there’s not one of them in the Cabinet with enough integrity and popular appeal across the whole spectrum of the Conservative Party, unless they can persuade Philip Hollobone or someone with similar honesty and trust to stand, then the remain MPs would just stab him in the back.

        • NickC
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:32 am | Permalink

          A-tracey, One way would be internal Conservative Party manoeuvres – the traditional men in dark suits. Another would be for the ERG to reform as the Independent Conservatives, so that Mrs May loses her majority in the HoC – that is, by a general election.

          One thing is for sure. A majority of the electorate voted to leave the EU treaties. By being the government and failing to implement that vote the Conservative party is destroying itself before our eyes. And most Tory MPs appear oblivious.

  4. Everhopeful
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Am I right in thinking that everyone has kept very quiet about EU law being superior to UK law…up until now?
    The trap had snapped well and truly shut before we were let in on that little secret!!
    Never mind a Statutory Instrument we now find out for certain that our fake Parliament is just an instrument of Brussels.
    And no one told us that either!

    • Andy
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:38 am | Permalink

      You misunderstand. EU law IS UK law. It is law we have agreed to. It is not imposed on us anymore than law from Westminster is imposed on us. And yes, as with Westminster law, sometimes we may not like it.

      • Anonymous
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:57 am | Permalink

        So. When our courts find in one way and the ECJ overrules in another – our will ?

        Or

        When we need a law or policy change specific to our country and we need to apply QMV in the EU – our will ?

        Do you even know what QMV is without googling it ?

        • Andy
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

          Yes I know what qualified majority voting is. And, no, it does not apply to key areas like taxation, expansion of the EU or the creation of an EU army. All of which any state can veto. Despite what it is says in the fake Lisbon Treaty Brexiteers like to share scare stories about which they claim is coming in next year.

          QMV, incidentally, was largely a British idea to speed up the process in non-vital areas where it made little sense to require unanimity.

          • Anonymous
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:00 am | Permalink

            The Five Presidents report makes it abundantly clear that fiscal union will be developed within the framework of the European Union.

            QMV a British idea ?

            No. A Federalist’s idea, whichever country they come from including ours. A majority voted Leave the EU which is not represented by similar numbers in our own Parliament.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:21 am | Permalink

        Andy
        The bald statement that EU law supersedes UK law will come as a surprise to many.

        When laws do not work for people ( especially those who are forced by law to pay taxes to keep the show on the road) those laws do feel like an imposition.

      • Boz
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:44 am | Permalink

        Andy and you wish this to remain so ?

        • Andy
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

          I have no qualms about its For many Brexiteers ECJ jurisdiction is a red line. But then you ask them to name an ECJ ruling – any ECJ ruling, just one – which has gone against the UK to which they object. They never can.

          They hate this court but can never name a single ruling it has made against our country which they find objectionable. Strange, eh?

          • NickC
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:34 am | Permalink

            Andy, Strawman. Again. Naming an ECJ ruling is irrelevant to objecting to the principle of a foreign court having primacy over our own courts and land.

          • Anonymous
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:06 am | Permalink

            Fishing. Finding against UK fishing. The Factortame case.

            The very fact that there is no treaty which agrees that the ECJ is the final arbiter of any case. A series of 1960s ECJ judgments amounted to a coup d’etat. Judges declared their decisions binding on individuals and businesses and then over national constitutions.

            Besides all of that, right or wrong (and I don’t doubt the EU is right much of the time) supremacy should be here, in our own country. Otherwise we drown in ‘democracy’ – too many opinions and other interests, all designed to deliver “Meh. Let’s stick with Blairism.”

          • Al
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:39 am | Permalink

            “They hate this court but can never name a single ruling it has made against our country which they find objectionable. ”

            The Factortame litigation.
            Repeated rulings on VAT (e.g. removing the reduced rate on home insulation, and for another…well, I suppose you aren’t female.)
            While those are recent cases, it goes right back to the start when scrapping the cut in beer duty is something that people objected to in 1981.

            While you personally may not be able to name cases, or claim that people are in the wrong to find them objectionable, the fact remains that “cases found objectionable” can be named.

      • NickC
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

        Andy, You misunderstand. EU law is not UK law, by definition. Otherwise EU law would not need the ECA (1972) to legitimise it within the UK. And yes, you have further confused (ignorance? or malice?) whether we like individual EU laws, with whether we accept the legitimacy of the process.

        You must surely begin to ask yourself, Andy, whether your views are right when you seem unable to construct an argument in good faith. Your attempting to win by cheating doesn’t even work for you in the end, because you’ll make incorrect decisions based on your own falsehoods.

      • rose
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:23 am | Permalink

        Westminster law gets debated, scrutinised, and voted on. Not so with EU law.

        • Know-Dice
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

          Rose, I wish…

          I’m sure too many just get “rubber stamped” through 🙁

          • rose
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

            Sir Christopher Chope seems to think so too.

        • Andy
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

          It gets discussed and debated in the European Parliament – by MEPs who you elect.

          • NickC
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:36 am | Permalink

            Andy, And by a lot of MEPs we don’t elect. But mainly by people who are not elected by the electorate in any EU state.

          • Anonymous
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:15 am | Permalink

            Then why wasn’t it a crisis when UKIP won the 2014 elections ?

            I’ll tell you why.

            It’s because there is no power in the European Parliament. It is just a talking shop designed to look like a democracy but to drown us in so many Party choices that you can’t name them all – but if those parties appeared here with the same names you would think them some loony fringe. Alliance of European Conservatives and Reformists, European Christian Political Movement, Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom…

            There are tens of them – it sounds like the Borg Collective. Drown us in democratic indecision. Leave it to the Commission and the Council of Ministers instead. (Name our representatives on those while you’re at it.)

            So which party do your MEPs stand for and what are their policies ?

          • hefner
            Posted March 26, 2019 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

            Wrong, the European Parliament and the MEPs it includes have all been voted in, obviously not all by UK voters, but why should they? Please tell me what right does a voter from the UK have to elect a representative from any of the other EU27 countries?

          • Edward2
            Posted March 27, 2019 at 7:38 am | Permalink

            Ridiculous argument from you hefner.
            One vote in 28 with 9 paying in the rest taking out.
            Real power with commissioners not elected by any voter.
            The EU Parliament represented by a few MEPs out voted by other nations MEPs.
            And QMV becoming more common on more important issues.
            You might be happy with this sham of democracy but I am not.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:55 am | Permalink

        But we (the people) can sack our Westminster lawmakers. It seems that the Westminster lawtakers cannot sack the Brussels Lawmakers because if they hold sovereign power over us ‘until we leave’ there is no impediment to their never allowing us to leave!

      • libertarian
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

        Andy

        AT LAST…. you’ve finally admitted what we’ve ben telling you all along, the EU controls the country and we the people voted to end that arrangement , you and others like you have continually told us that we are a sovereign nation and dont need to leave to gain control. You now admit we do.

      • Andy
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 11:10 am | Permalink

        Totally incorrect. EU Law is NOT UK Law. Because the UK is a Dualist State the Government can sign whatever treaties it likes, but these have no effect in UK Law unless and until Parliament legislates to make it so. In the case of the EU its ‘Law’ only has traction in the UK by virtue of the EEC Act of 1972 and even then it does not transpose EU Law into UK Law but, if memory serves, as the act says ‘makes available in UK Law…’ Further, any treaty of the EU such as Maastricht, Nice, Lisbon etc has no validity unless and until it is added to the schedule of treaties which is basically an appendix to that 1972 Act.

        • Edward2
          Posted March 27, 2019 at 7:40 am | Permalink

          But we have agreed to these treaties andy.
          So EU law regulations and directives become UK law regulations and directives.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:57 am | Permalink

      No, you are not right about that. This has been brewing up for years and it came up again and again, but maybe you had better things to do with your life than pay too much attention to what may have seemed a rather recondite abstract matter.

      The most obnoxious article in the proposed EU Constitution was this:

      “Primacy of Union law”

      “The Constitution and law adopted by the institutions of the Union in exercising the competences conferred on it shall have primacy over the law of the Member States.”

  5. William Simpson
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    I am confused. Yesterday in an attempt to clarify the position, I came across this:
    Brexit: European Council adopts decision extending the period under Article 50
    https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2019/03/22/brexit-european-council-adopts-decision-extending-the-period-under-article-50/
    which seems to suggest that the UK Government has already agreed to the extension of Article 50 until 12 April, ignoring the requirement I long assumed, that changing an Act of Parliament required the implementation of Statutory Instruments, by the British Parliament. I am utterly flabbergasted that the Prime Minister seems to think that she can act outside of the Act of Parliament. Is this even legal?

    • SecretPeople
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:20 am | Permalink

      Does this pre-emptive extension not exemplify Henry VIIIth powers in action – the ability to put into effect SIs without parliamentary approval – that David Davis tried to bring in for expediency and was opposed? Perhaps Sir John would know?

    • Caterpillar
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:44 am | Permalink

      Yep, we are not leaving until the 12th April at the earliest. This is the international agreement and May should not have done this against the referendum and against the manifesto. Perhaps she hoped the EU would day no so that she could blame everyone else as us her style. We know for certain that May and her Govt asks for and received the extension. It is her and her Govt that are responsible for preventing the UK simply leaving.

      The exit date in UK law needs to be aligned to act as a trigger so that e.g. there is no confusion between EU or UK law.

      All explained here
      https://www.hansardsociety.org.uk/blog/changing-eu-exit-day-by-statutory-instrument
      Written a few days before the extension.

    • NickC
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:09 am | Permalink

      William Simpson, Yes of course it is legal to use a Statutory Instrument to change a date in an Act. It is regularly done. The problem here is that too many commenters have frantically declared that the 29th March date of exit day is set in stone. It isn’t. The EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018 has provision within it (Sec 20/4) for a Minister to amend the date of exit day. The UK requested an extension; the European Council agreed an extension; Parliament will (almost certainly) ratify the SI. We will leave no earlier than 12th April.

      • hefner
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for that. Also interesting “Changing exit day by statutory instrument” on the Hansard web site, with a nice explanation of why UK exit day and EU exit day must be the same and of the other agreements becoming obsolete on that day. A bit legalistic but certainly the basis of what will be happening in the coming days (despite the love song and the Dance of Seven Veils that Sir JR is performing today for his enamoured audience).

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      As I mentioned yesterday the UK is a “dualist” state, which is explained here:

      https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201011/cmselect/cmeuleg/633/63304.htm

      “The UK is a ‘dualist’ state, unlike many continental European countries, which are ‘monist’. In dualist states a treaty ratified by the Government does not alter the laws of the state unless and until it is incorporated into national law by legislation. This is a constitutional requirement: until incorporating legislation is enacted, the national courts have no power to enforce treaty rights and obligations either on behalf of the Government or a private individual.”

      Our domestic legislation says that the relevant “incorporating legislation” will be repealed on “exit day”:

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2018/16/section/1/enacted

      “The European Communities Act 1972 is repealed on exit day.”

      and so from “exit day” the UK will no longer be able to guarantee fulfilment of all its international obligations under the EU treaties and laws; it seems to me that if that “exit day” continues to be defined as March 29th then the Foreign Secretary would have to inform the EU that the UK can no longer conscientiously pledge to be bound by the EU treaties and laws from that date, March 29th, irrespective of what the European Council has decided.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

        Martin Howe QC gave his interpretation of the legality of overriding the current SI and our possible withdrawal from the EU on the 29th March on Nigel Farage’s show yesterday (Sunday 24th March 2019). His feelings were mixed.

        By coincidence, yesterday evening, I revisited a lot of YouTube lectures given by the former Greek Finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis. The words he uses to denounce the way the European Union works should be heeded by all. A kindergarten play shop is better run.

        In my own view, we have to go back a long way to see the tipping point where the pro-EU con-artists finally surrendered UK sovereignty, but so stealthily, it was barely noticed. Certainly not noticed by those who still wish to belong to it. No reasonable and informed person could ever wish to be part of something so crude, so undemocratic, and badly run.

        Tad

      • Jagman84
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, Denis. I concluded similar from the Hansard Society website. If our leaving day( defined by the expiry date of article50/3) and exit date( defined in the Withdrawal act,2018) are not the same, all sorts of legal difficulties will ensue, as you so eloquently described. Hopefully, it is now too late to be altered so we will be out on Friday, regardless of Remainer shenanigans.

  6. oldtimer
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    This sounds like a Catch 22 issue making the Article 50 process meaningless. Is it the latest wheeze by a desperate May government to prevent UK departure? Whatever the legal arguments, other EU leaders still worry about a no deal exit and with good reason. It would change the negotiating dynamic and level the playing field for the UK. Only a PM determined to push for Brexit in name only would forgo the no deal option.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      Well what a surprise, at last the truth is out, EU law may/does supersede Parliamentary UK Law.

      Add that into the Withdrawal Agreement and we all know what that means, you were all worried about a backstop, when in fact it is much, much worse than that, they hold legal precedence over everything written into it, and as such we would never escape the clutches of the EU.

      This surely must make May’s deal absolutely dead in the water for anyone who has an ounce of common sense.

      Mays deal must not be voted through under any circumstances, not even if she offers to go the day afterwards.

      I am with What Tiler’s post, for gods sake just walk away and fix our own tariffs under WTO rules, at least we are then in control of our own destiny.

      Just when you think it cannot get any worse of a shambles under May, it does.

  7. Mark B
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:06 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    It is good that at long last much truth is coming out. For far too long Remain and Remainers have been free to peddle their lies, no more. Now even they admit that EU law is superior to UK law and they have brought this country to a near point of vassaldom.

    We never voted for a delay, we voted to Leave and Leave either signing a Withdrawal Agreement or, after two years whichever came first. Parliament, quite rightly chose to not sign the WA which now leaves Leave as the default position. If parliament were to agree an extension this would be a betrayal of the Referendum and their promises to respect it. We will never trust them again.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:59 am | Permalink

      Mark B
      Agree absolutely. Well put!

    • Mark B
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:04 am | Permalink

      By Leave I also mean by TWO.

    • Gary C
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:04 am | Permalink

      “We will never trust them again.”

      You mean you still do? For many of us parliament have destroyed any hope we had.

      Personally I am at the point where I’ve lost all interest in which direction the country is going and the only thing that will reverse that is a NO DEAL exit.

      The country voted for Parliament to fight for us, there will come a time when they want the electorate to fight for them and unless they deliver their voice will fall on deaf ears.

      • a-tracy
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

        We all still have to live hear GaryC having listened to remainers get the top of the agenda and news items, slagging us off at every juncture, saying we’re thick and don’t know what we were doing, trying to overturn the decision not only through their compliant BBC, Institutions and remain MPs but by constantly deriding anyone who doesn’t think like them and I’ve frankly had enough of it and them now.

        The WA is no way to leave and is only there to tie us up in knots John Redwood is right and if his leave supporting colleagues actually want to stand by leave they mustn’t vote it through or the fault for everything crumbling will be passed to them rather than the traitors who designed it.

        • a-tracy
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

          here not hear

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:15 am | Permalink

      And we never ever voted to surrender our constitution to an alien country! We were told Parliament had not done so – if they have, behind the back of the People they better strain every sinew to put that betrayal right.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:17 am | Permalink

        We were told that, and I expect some people still have their copy of the leaflet issued by the government for the 1975 referendum which said that.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

          Of course Enoch, The Quandum Viscount Stansgate and many others told us it was not so …. a reading of the documents confirmed it.

        • Tad Davison
          Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

          Denis,

          Sir Teddy Taylor and I once went over the Treaty of Rome in his office, and there were passages and phrases in that document which made the hairs on the back of one’s neck stand on end.

          It is with deep regret that people paid little heed to Enoch Powell in 1975 when he so eloquently warned about what was to follow should we remain inside the European Union. My dad was of the same opinion, and could articulate his misgivings just as eloquently. I believe Enoch Powell’s incredibly powerful speech is still available to view. I challenge remainers to watch it.

          Tad

    • Timaction
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      …………We would never trust them again………..it took you a long time but you got there in the end! Why do you think we all left the Tory’s?

    • RAF
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:56 am | Permalink

      The fact that the ERG is vacillating over their position re May’s ghastly “deal” does not help matters. This morning I heard Nigel Evans repeat his weak reasons for voting for serfdom. How a change of Prime Minister will change the outcome of agreeing to her “deal” defeats all logic. The UK will be exposed to the full fury of the punishment deal that the EU promised and May has tried to deliver.
      The ERG should take the stance that they will never support her capitulation stance and therefore create some clear water between themselves and May’s supporters.
      The country is fractured due to a chronic lack of leadership and the ERG should look to fill that void and clearly explain to the people what their alternative to May’s direction of travel is, and how that alternative could be implemented.
      May’s deal is very unpopular and it will not improve its rating if it is voted into being, quite the opposite. MPs holding their noses and voting for it will not change the terrible impact it would have on the UK, that impact will be highly visible and will taint the Tories for a generation if they pass it into law.

      Reply Lots of ERG members or friends are not wavering but continue to oppose the Agreement

    • David Price
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      Well said. I have lost trust in many of the current denizens of Parliament, the question remaining for me is whether I can no longer trust the democratic process. Things will be clear on Saturday 30th March.

    • L Jones
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

      Does this mean that the EU actually KNEW our referendum would mean nothing?

      If so, the word ”betrayal” takes on a whole new meaning. I never thought that our own government would be guilty of such abysmal stuff. It makes one think that there really IS a ”deep state” (is that what it’s called?) out there, with a long-term manipulation strategy that is truly awesome. And how sinister is that?

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    The deal is so appalling no one should accept it. Just leave, but even a delay or short term remain is better, May is truly appalling this even by the dire standards of Heath, Major, Cameron, Blair and Brown.

    Martin Howe is right.

    This extension shows a contempt for precedent Martin Howe QC in the Telegraph today.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      The Sun today in an obituary for May’s premiership is absurdly complementary about May. No she has been an absmal PM. She has make a complete fist of Brexit, she is a liar, an electoral liability, a Pc dope, a tax to death socialist, the worst PM in living memory. One who might even give us her dire straight jacket deal

      And perhaps even leave us with ……… Corbyn.

      • Doug Powell
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

        Exactly! The most pathetic PM ever in the history of the world! – She is a hundred per cent arrogance and nothing else! And bloody dangerous because of that!

        I believe I started to go deaf about 2 1/2 years ago. I was sure I heard May say “Brexit means Brexit” – but going by her actions I believe she must have said “Brexit means bugger all!”

      • Tad Davison
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

        This backs-up what I’ve been saying for ages LL, the Conservative party left its supporters, not the other way around. Even right-leaning newspapers can’t always be depended upon to tell the truth about a given situation.

        It’s surprising (or maybe not) the number of traditional Labour voters whose views are to the right of the present Tory party. Yet all parties are full of politicians who con people into thinking they are solidly for or against something to get elected, when in reality, they are anything but.

        The aforementioned voters are effectively politically homeless, but what a state of affairs! What an opportunity for a like-minded person to sweep up their votes. Instead we get a steady procession of politically correct gutless wonders. I despair.

        Tad

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

        …. leave us with “confiscatory and kill the economy in no time” Corbyn – is that better?

    • oldtimer
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Will someone point out that Barrow acted ultra vires?

  9. Roy Grainger
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    Interesting. So if the EU offered a 100 year delay we’d have to accept it ? I suppose May gets a veto on that offer at the EU level but it seems an odd situation.

  10. Dominic
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    And there we have it. The emperor is indeed found to be wearing nothing at all. The truth is there for all to see. EU law is indeed superior to domestic British Parliamentary law. What a total abuse of who we are and indeed what we are

    A mere region of the German economic empire

    We have become Merkel’s dog on a leash as she pulls us around like a poodle on wheels

    The revenge of Versailles is complete and we now have to suffer the pathetic humiliation of seeing the British PM on her hands and knees begging for political sustenance

    At the next GE it is important we have an ardent Eurosceptic as our leader. We must also not allow Marxist Labour to benefit in the North. Labour’s role in in this deceit as been cancerous from the start.

    I worry that the British voter may punish all Tory MPs and reward all Labour MPs in response to the duplicitious actions of a vile Tory PM. That would lead to a Marxist Labour government. That event would prove fatal for the nation

    We look to all Eurosceptic MPs to protect our democracy from the actions of other MPs who appear determined to destroy what we are and what we have

  11. Charles Crane
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Many years ago when I was a freelance IT contractor, Gordon Brown tried manipulating various old statutes to penalise freelancers. The Professional Contractors Group issued legal challenges.

    Every time that it went to the High Court we indicated that if we lost then we would persue a further challenge through the ECJ. Brown backed off because he didn’t want to demonstrate that EU law was superior to UK law.

    The cat is now escaping the bag – but some of us always knew this to be case. That’s one of the main reasons I voted to leave.

  12. Davidin Kent
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    So, is it correct to say that any MP voting in favour of this statuary instrument would be making it clear to the voters that s/he wishes to revoke Brexit?

    • hefner
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

      No.

  13. /IKH
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    I agree with a lot of what you write but on this I think I disagree. Mrs May as PM has ( I presume ) signed a memorandum of agreement to amend the article 50 end date as part of treaty law. This then needs to be passed in to statute law as an S.I. I do not see this as any kind of trick. This is exactly how we joined the EEC. The PM signs a Treaty which is then enacted into statute law.

    I also think that the PM has given a clear signal that she will lead the U.K. to Brexit via either her deal or ‘No Deal’ and that no other choice is acceptable to her.

    This means that she needs help to just run down the clock to the 12th April. I don’t doubt that she will try for MV3 in the week leading up to 12/04 and I also don’t doubt that she will loose. This, I think, will lead to a much hoped for ‘No Deal’ Brexit on the 12th April.

    /ikh

  14. agricola
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    A horrible conundrum. In our so called leadership, when we need clarity we are faced with confusion. I suspect that despite the referendum result, manifesto declarations, parliamentary votes and myriad speeches nobody is prepared to put their head above the parapet because collectively Parliament are dismissive of the electorate and prefer to remain.

    The minor parties plus Ken Clarke are so because they have always been so. At least they have been consistent and honest. Labour is cleft betweet a few who prefer to leave, many who prefer to stay with what they see as international socialism, and those driven by raw opportunism intent on political power. Power that would lead to economic armagedon and the end of any chance of UK sovereignty.

    We are left with clarity in the DUP, plus a doubtful clarity in the ERG over leadership options. Add to this around 200 so called conservative MPs who though having paid lip service to the referendum result have in various degrees of duplicity conived to scupper it.

    The only way we will get the clarity needed is for Churchillian levels of leadership to bring the Conservative party together. Division is the greater risk of disaster.

    • agricola
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

      Not contensious so can we get it moderated. It has been with you since 06.51.

  15. Adam
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    The EU is a legal swamp.
    Delay grows alligators to bite off our escape.
    Starve their ability to reach us.

    • agricola
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      Problem is Adam those EU alligators have cross bred with our own reptiles in the HoC. Until our own Mr Dundee arises don’t go near the Thames.

      • Adam
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

        If the EU want more of our bread, he’ll tell them what to do.
        Let them eat Dundee cake.

  16. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Well, once more it looks like a complete betrayal of the people, sovereignty, and the law will take place with nobody able or indeed it would seem, willing to take on May and her cohorts in this twisted tale. I am truly sick of this government and MPs. Nobody has the right to sign us up to perpetual slavery especially when it is against the result of a free and democratic vote given to us by the government itself. May they all go to hell in a hand cart. Even that’s too good for them.

  17. APL
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Mark B: “Now even they admit that EU law is superior to UK law and they have brought this country to a near point of vassaldom.”

    We’ve known that for 43 years. That’s what the ’73 act did, an act of submission to EU law. We agreed to be subject to Brussels rule.

    We revoke the ’73 act, abrogate if necessary any and all treaties. And regain our self respect and self determination.

    • Jagman84
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      It has been longer than 43 years. We were being prepared for EU sacrifice, years before that. What was the introduction of decimal coinage, in 1969 and the changeover on Feb 15th 1971? What was it, if not pre-accession preparation? They probably trashed our economy to scare us into joining.

      • margaret howard
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

        Jagman

        “They probably trashed our economy to scare us into joining.”

        No, we did that all by ourselves.
        We had become the ‘Sick man of Europe’ on the verge of collapse when we begged to join the European community. Industry was collapsing, interest rates were spiralling and inflation was rampant.

        You obviously can’t remember the food, fuel and power shortages or the steadily growing balance of payments deficit. The common market had to pump in 25% of its regional development funds to stabilise the nation, the highest ever figure

        Pity people have such short memories.

        • Edward2
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 7:27 am | Permalink

          Very odd spin on history which you keep cutting and pasting Margaret.
          Militant trade union strikes and Heath’s useless leadership caused the three day week and the UK has paid in more than it takes out of the EU in every year bar one in the last 43 years.
          Then three terms of Conservative reforming government came in and turned the country around.

        • NickC
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:45 am | Permalink

          Margaret Howard, Still peddling your lies about the 1970s? The UK was the world’s 5th biggest economy when we joined the EEC (EU) in 1972, we are now the 7th. I do remember the shortages – they occurred when we were already in the EEC.

      • Richard
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:19 pm | Permalink
      • L Jones
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

        I think you’re right, Jagman. This is the long game as far as the EU is concerned. It was probably arranged in a set of algorithms, since 1971. How fiendishly clever! And here we are. I daresay they didn’t think we’d be QUITE such a tough nut, though. When they’d decided to wring our neck like a chicken, I daresay they’d forgotten Churchill’s words ”Some chicken, some neck”.

        So – what now? We can’t allow them to corral us because of some simple-minded and self-serving MPs. We have ‘previous’ in this regard – perhaps now is the time to remember it.

  18. Cheshire Girl
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    This is all so complicated that I’m losing the will to live. I suspect that those who have to implement this are feeling the same.

    • L Jones
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:05 am | Permalink

      Except, Cheshire Girl, that the ones who have to implement this are the ones who complicated it in the first place.
      Our precious country deserves so much better.

      Thanks to Sir John for keeping us to speed with all this. I have to read his blog before I can face the blathering of the MSM.

    • Chris Dark
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:51 am | Permalink

      It is and so am I. The complexity is so head-banging that most ordinary folk-in-the-street will either wilt or just close their minds. Obfuscation and muddying waters doesn’t even begin to describe it all.

      • L Jones
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

        Then they are naysayers. This is no time to admit defeat – or even being tired! Brace up!

    • Andy
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      You seem surprised that it is complicated to be undoing 40 years of law, unpicking complex relationships, renegotiating hundreds of highly technical international arrangements and doing it all with unqualified people in an absurdly short time period.

      Why are you surprised this is complicated?

      • Edward2
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

        Come on Andy even you can see how the process is being deliberately made difficult because remain supporters are involved at the heart ofthe process.
        Leaving is easy.

      • NickC
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:47 am | Permalink

        Andy, Because people like you, and more importantly the BBC, etc, propaganda, insisted we were not run by the EU?

  19. Kevin
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    1) “Some say EU law is still superior to UK law before the EU Withdrawal Act comes into effect and we therefore have to obey the Council offer.”

    2) BBC writes (March 22nd): “Downing Street sources say an agreement with the EU to extend the Brexit deadline would be a piece of international law and would take precedence even if Parliament rejected it”. (According to online Hansard, (Feb. 3rd, 2016), David Cameron said of his pre-referendum UK-EU renegotiation, “These changes will be binding in international law, and will be deposited at the UN.”)

    If either of these claims were true, however, by the same reasoning wouldn’t Mrs. May’s Withdrawal Agreement already be law?

    Thank you once again for your timely update. You would obviously agree that this is not the week to go wobbly based on “Downing Street sources”.

    P.S.: What about the (Gina) Miller case, which, as I understand it, requires primary legislation to remove rights enacted by primary legislation?

  20. rick hamilton
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    I had to hear it twice to believe it. On Marr’s show on Sunday Ian Duncan Smith commented that the Commons was ‘Full of people who couldn’t run a whelk stall’.

    Millions would agree with that, but then why does May think they can possibly come up with anything workable ? Just another transparent trick to bounce us into her rotten deal.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      Dear Rick–IDS is absolutely right–I have said any number of times here that what gets MP’s elected these days is attibutes such as a nice pair of legs or the gift of the gab and nothing necessarily to do with intelligence or competence or the ability to inspire or experience running a business etc etc. Our system of s0-called representative democracy is pure bunk and I for one care little for what most MP’s say especially on those progeammes where they all say something different.

    • Mitchel
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      IDS has conducted himself brilliantly throughout the referendum campaign and it’s aftermath.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

        I agree, but he was effectively ousted by a pro-EU coup. It really would be interesting to know their motives and incentives. Was it money? Power? The promise of a pat on the back from our EU masters for getting rid of a Eurosceptic leader?

        I know the identities of some, and in their case, it is all of the above.

        The EU is so corrupt, no decent honest person would ever wish to be associated with it without constantly tearing it to pieces. That makes me doubt the integrity of the present day pro-EU plotters.

        Tad

      • Julie Dyson
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

        Lest we forget, it’s just a pity that IDS was also primarily responsible (as DWP Minister) for the awful Bedroom Tax, which to this day continues to cause immense and unnecessary suffering to thousands upon thousands of our country’s poorest and most unfortunate. His only saving grace is in being a Brexiteer; as a “caring conservative” he is a joke.

    • stred
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      During one of the lengthy debates, one of them, a lady from some constituency with a furniture factory, thought that we should remain because it would not be able to get materials from Europe if we left. They must be very high tech with JIT for cloth and wood up North. Wait a minute, whelk stalls sell prawns from abroad. Stockpile, stockpile.

    • hefner
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      IDS was not able to keep the leadership for more than 25 months, one of the shortest and most calamitous leader that the CP ever had, apart from the present one obviously.

  21. Mick
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    Who can delay our exit
    In a word no one or place, we voted out, Parliament voted overwhelmingly to have a vote on leaving or staying , Parliament voted overwhelmingly to invoke article 50 , then it started to get very messy because of the self serving interest of mps to stay in there beloved Europe because they can see the Eurostar gravy train leaving without them, well tough to the lot of you, you should have listen to the majority who voted out and not the cry baby losers and come the next GE we will remember the only true believers in Great Britain and democracy and vote them back into Westminster to represent us , but saying all that get us out this Friday

  22. Mrs Alison Houston
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    Thank you for writing on this subject, as I requested last week, though you did not publish my request, for some reason.

    • bigneil
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      Don’t be concerned Alison – most of my stuff goes straight into John’s rubbish bin.
      ( Stop cheering at the back).

  23. Everhopeful
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    If MPs cave in ( as is likely?) and pass May’s treacherous “ Deal”and then she GOES…..can said “Deal” be changed/improved/torn up during the next stage(s) of negotiations?

    • agricola
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      I very much doubt it can be changed. If the subsequent trade negotiation becomes onerous through EU intrangidence then we may be able to use international treaty law to escape EU clutches. This wastes a few more years and puts us back where we are now with the opportunity of leaving with no deal.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:59 am | Permalink

      No! Martin Howe says we will be playing the second half of a chess game with 3 pawns on the board –

  24. BOF
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    On BBC this morning one would take it as fact that the new date to leave is 12th April so thank you Sir John for your clarification.

    So desperate is our Remain Parliament to wreck Brexit that I fully expect them to approve the new date.

    • eeyore
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      There seem to be two dates, Brexit Day and Exit Day. One is the date we leave the EU, the other that on which EU laws cease to apply:
      https://www.hansardsociety.org.uk/blog/changing-eu-exit-day-by-statutory-instrument

      There seems yet further confusion about whether we are in the EU by international treaty or by EU law. If the former, EU laws might still apply even when by national law they have ceased to apply. If the latter, they may not apply even though they might still apply. I hope that’s clear.

      As for extending by SI, it seems a leaving date must be given but we do not know our leaving date: June 12 or May 22? Perhaps an SI is inappropriate and primary legislation is needed after all.

      This all seems tailor-made for the Supreme Court – unless jurisdiction in fact lies with the ECJ.

    • bigneil
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      12th April – -but was a year mentioned?

  25. MPC
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    When MPs and the HoL vote through the SI that’s surely the end of our Brexit dream.

    • Jagman84
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      Maybe. But it could be the start of their electoral nightmares. They really are deluded if they believe that they will come out of this debacle unscathed.

  26. George Brooks
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    Thank you Sir John for answering my question from yesterday in your entry today.

    Mrs May is totally and uterly out of her depth and it is getting worse by the hour. She has absolutely no idea of the huge hole she has dug by firstly accepting the WA and then accepting two new departure dates. She is acting like a dictator and should be prevented from causing any more damage.

    Mps voting in favour of the WA show that they have no regard whatsoever for this country’s future as we will be held in transit by the EU for many years to come.

    She must go today, if possible.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Dear George–I am mystified at certain bigwigs saying that changing the PM won’t make any difference. She has been the major problem throughout with Brexit, as she was in the Home Office and has no ability whatsoever to inspire the nation. Feeling sorry for her, as some seem to do, is wholly inappropriate, as is commending her stamina and all the rest. Getting her the Hell out of it is a necessary first step.

      • graham1946
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

        I think they say that because she has ruined everything beyond repair and as for being hard working etc. well, you can dig holes and fill them in if you want hard work, but it gets you nowhere. We need smart work, not hard work.

        The only difference a new leader would make (as long as the Tories don’t do their usual and get yet another duffer) is that the next stage of the Trade Negotiations would be better handled, rather than just taking dictation from the EU as she has with her appalling treaty.

      • Mitchel
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        Ah but she represents those “dark forces” that have been long muttered about;the same dark forces that will ensure her replacement will be of the same ilk.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

        Absolutely, but her premiership is like toothache.

        The pain was brought about in the first place by all the rubbish (EU legislation and diktat) we’ve been forced to swallow. The only option left is to remove the rotten tooth, but we must not allow the ingestion of yet more rubbish EU in the future.

        Tad

    • Martin R
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

      She must go. But she has absolutely no intention of going, she’s having far too much fun where she is.

  27. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Most MPs don’t want to leave the EU and will do all they can to ignore the referendum result. People can now see just how duplicitous and mendacious they are. If they get their way, the first to suffer the electoral consequences will be local councillors. The Conservative and Labour parties will never recover – although, because Conservatives are in office, they will probably suffer more.
    Senior members of your party are now openly supporting revocation of Article 50 and/or another referendum. Elsewhere we are told that it may be possible to vote for Mrs May’s “deal” actually a legally binding treaty with the EU. Just why anyone would want to vote for such a disastrous treaty on condition that Mrs May resigns to leave it for someone else to pick up this poisoned chalice is a mystery to me.
    Let’s leave this Friday on WTO terms and keep £39bn to spend here in the UK.

  28. Paul Cohen
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    About time the Cabinet took over and showed some leadership and resolve – stop all this faffing around and get on with it.

    • agricola
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      Members of the Cabinet by virtue of their position are bound to agree with the collective position as enunciated by Mrs May. They must do their fighting for anything different in the privacy of Cabinet and hope for a different outcome. As it is the have collective responsibility for the May deal. When she goes they should go with her.

      If their differences with May are pronounced they should resign. They do their cause and their character no good by bleating in the press under the heading, a minister was heard to say.

  29. Anonymous
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Appealing to the party that caused Brexit.

    Bluntly. What caused Brexit was the destabilisation of the Middle East by Blair of Arabia and then David Cameron trying to be Blair Mk 2.

    The People had put up with an unexpected 10 million swell in population but the sight of the refugee crisis terrified them. I note we no longer see or hear of it these days. It must have stopped therefore.

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      One way or another the interventions in Libya, Syria and Iraq by British Prime Ministers are going to end the EU. European culture is now at risk and the MSM and established news outlets have gone silent on the exodus.

      Message to Remainers and Leavers (and self)

      Our country is ruinously and irreparably fractured because of what we did.

      It is happening because we simply do not deserve to live in a prosperous and peaceful country for what we did – and so we are watching it slip away.

      If you voted Blair or voted Cameron (as I did once and STUPIDLY) then you are guilty and are now paying the price. We are going to have to pay what is due.

    • stred
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      Have a look at Facts4eu. It’s increased over the EU.

    • David Price
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      I suggest the cause has been brewing a long time with the country being increasingly divided over 40+ years. Issues such as increased migration underlining the contempt the EU leadership has for the people were merely the trigger.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

      I don’t doubt that played a part, but my antithesis towards the EU started much earlier with the realisation that a secretive cabal of underhanded politicians (firstly Tories and then Labour) wanted to give away this nation’s sovereignty by stealth without the people noticing or even having a say.

      When the likes of Blair and Cameron take precipitative actions on dubious pretexts, it is good to hold them to account via the ballot box. When the EU has its own army, there will be no ballot box, and no democratic accountability!

      Some things never change!

      Tad

  30. Nicholas Murphy
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    I hope, Sir John, that you and the rest of the ERG have a plan for the week, agreed by all. Navigating point-to-point, or from pillar-to-post, won’t do.

  31. ukretired123
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    The lady’s not for Leaving.

    2 fingers to the peasants and thumbs up for EU.

    Sir John is spot on about any initiative from the EU gives them oxygen and another lever over us and is not showing them our determination to honour the Referendum.

    Beware Brussels bearing gifts.
    Friday is 46 years in waiting.
    Friday is D Day.
    Action this day please.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

      Maybe we ought to think about the 14th July 1789 and the storming of the Bastille. The peasants will only tolerate injustice for so long before they revolt. Democracy is supposed to allow for the rights of the dispossessed to be heard and respected.

      Tad

  32. William1995
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Off-topic, but I find it amusing that Trump has been found innocent of working with the Russians during his campaign. The absurd narrative of Trump winning because of Russian bots set by the democrats, media etc is coming crashing down. It should now be much more difficult for Remainers/the BBC to casually make such claims about the Brexit campaign.

    • Prigger
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      Of course Trump was innocent from the start just as there was no need for a definition of Leave.
      The Russian attack on our way of thought and action has scored a massive victory by words and so on best not said.

    • Richard1
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:09 am | Permalink

      it is remarkable how little coverage this is getting. Democrats in the US, and leftists around the world have been asserting confidently for 2 years that Trump was effectively working for the Russians. This report shows that assertion to be complete and utter nonsense. Will Trump get an apology from those who have pursued this witch hunt and repeated the assertions?

      • Tad Davison
        Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

        We should take this as a lesson in the workings of the deep state and vested interests. We’ve got plenty of these sordid types in the UK too. They will stop at nothing to con the people and try to influence public opinion wit lies and smears, so we must fight them every inch of the way!

        Tad

    • agricola
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      Yes, both Trump and our referendum result have alarmed establishment thinking. They have upset their plan for the way politics should play out in the World. As a consequence the media, civil services and broadcaster who are largely establishment oriented are very upset and have kicked back ever since. Respective electorates will not forget this in a hurry, but nor will the forces of establishment melt away, they will adapt more effective camoflage.

  33. Stred
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    While trading with the EU has been pretty well sorted, and supplies of drugs, food and medicines should not be a problem, Mr Gove’s dept has still not told farmers or researchers what arrangements will be in effect to replace payments and grants. Does anyone know why this has not been done when the minister is supposed to be a Brexitteer and is mentioned as a new PM,? “How long would it take to announce these measures and have plans been made. If not, he should resign.

    • DaveK
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      Mr Gove does not want to upset the large land owners who get huge subsidies for growing nothing and having windsticks near the peasants.

    • roger
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

      Gove as PM?
      I think we would be as well off with May.
      Two cheeks of the same ability.

  34. Richard1
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    So now the ERG – with the continued exception of one or two, inc yourself – have agreed to vote for Mays deal if she agrees to go? Why do all those in principle objections to mrs Mays deal fall away just because she isn’t PM anymore? I agree that almost anyone would be better than her for the next stage, but I thought the problem with the WA is it makes it impossible to realise the potential advantages of Brexit such as an independent trade policy? It should be a no-brainer to vote it down.

    Boris Johnson proposes a WA until end 21 but with no backstop, and a re-set on negotiations. But there is no WA without the backstop, the EU realise the backstop is the instrument to keep the UK in the CU, a key long term objective for them.

    It really would have been better if brexiteer Conservative MPs, ministers and backbenchers, had been better coordinated than this from the beginning! No wonder the remainers are making all the running.

  35. Andy
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    We saw the true face of Brexit at Chequers at the weekend.

    12 hugely privileged and mostly insanely out of touch rich old white men in a room negotiating about the future of our country.

    Attendees included failed former foreign secretary and part time game show host Boris Johnson. Failed former Brexit Secretary David Davis. Fellow failed former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab. Failed former Brexit minister Steve Baker. Failed former Tory leader and failed Cabinet minister Iain Duncan Smith. Jacob Rees Mogg – who has never has a job important enough to fail. And a bunch of other mostly rich old white men. #Brexit

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 1:46 am | Permalink

      That could describe the EU Council of Ministers.

      What’s wrong with old white men ?

      • Al
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 10:34 am | Permalink

        “What wrong with old white men ?”

        Because if you are politically correct, members of that group should be judged entirely by their gender, race, and age. You remember, the criteria that you should ignore for every other group…

        (Lack of diverse viewpoints is an issue, but double-think annoys me.)

    • NickC
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      Andy, The true face of Brexit is 17.4m of us.

      • margaret howard
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

        NickC

        I prefer the true face of the 16.1m Remainers – young, educated, open to the world and the wealth creators of this country.

        • Edward2
          Posted March 27, 2019 at 7:46 am | Permalink

          Sadly for you only 36% of these super youngsters bothered to get out of bed and vote in the referendum.

  36. Ison Redux
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    If we were to believe foreign propaganda oft repeated..

  37. Kenneth
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    The Prime Minister is in the sordid territory of fishing for support from opposition parties.

    Can she stoop any lower to force us to Remain in the eu?

  38. Anonymous
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    It’s been THREE YEARS since the referendum and we are still in the EU.

    Most of my Remain friends accepted the result. 28% of eligible voters did not vote either way.

    Our departure is being held up by a minority.

  39. Nation deceiving nat
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Will someone please make a Youtube video compilation of all Mays broken promises/untruths she has uttered since her days as HS, it will be atlleast 3 hours long.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      Well said!

      Tad

  40. Bryan Harris
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    Is there any news on what went on in the secret meeting between May, and Mogg and company at Chequers yesterday?

    • David Price
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

      it would appear that they all drove themselves, I wonder if they were allowed to hang on to their phones this time.

      Boris didn’t seem impressed – ‘Thersa May’s government is ‘chicken’ and has ‘bottled it’ over Brexit”

    • Richard
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

      “several of those present, including Mr Rees-Mogg, the leading Eurosceptic, asked her to set a timetable for her departure. However Mrs May declined to do so and subsequently refused to be drawn on the matter when it was raised again.” https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/03/24/theresa-may-rebuffed-calls-set-resignation-date-frank-chequers/

  41. Ison Redux
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    Aye, the EU may cause their propagandist cultists to rise of a morning but the world keeps on revolving.

  42. Iain Gill
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    I hear all the local Conservative people who traditionally do the leaflets to the public around election time are on strike, and are refusing to go out for the local elections.

    Cannot end well for the Conservatives.

    • Sue Doughty
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      Same for all political parties now. We are all sickened by the behaviour of MPs in he House of Commons and many aapointed to the House of Lords are now cross benchers, not affiliated to the party that put them there.

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Yeah but Iain they’re banking on who else is there to vote for?!

      A vote Lib Dem will be taken as we support remaining in the EU.
      A vote Labour we endorse Jeremy Corbyn and his band of momentum student activism.
      A vote Conservative and we are seen to support May.
      Meanwhile, our local Councils and Councillors who have nothing to do with national politics will be thrown to the wolves. Turnout could be less than 20% and that doesn’t really give them authority.

  43. Ison Redux
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Nowt for the youth is EU policy.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

      I wonder how the younger voters will feel if we don’t get out of the EU and subsequently, there is conscription to an EU army?

      The leave ones will understandably be dismayed, but the remain contingent will surely be happy to march and fight in wars upon which their only elected representatives have no say.

      Tad

      • Simon Coleman
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

        Where is your evidence for future conscription to an EU army? You obviously don’t like younger voters because they’re hostile to this grim Brexit project. Outside the EU we could be even more vulnerable to getting dragged into US wars which are against our national interest.

        • Tad Davison
          Posted March 27, 2019 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

          I know remainers find some things difficult to comprehend, which is probably why they voted to stay in the EU, but I’ll do my best.

          I am outlining a set of circumstances that could happen if we get drawn closer to the European Union. Those circumstances would not and could not happen if the UK were out of the EU and thus by extension, not part of the proposed EU army. Brexit will actually be their saviour against the grand neo-liberal undemocratic unaccountable Europen project whose leaders have already stated their have plans to expand.

          Rather than being against young people, I am trying to protect their lives and interests. I have three kids of ‘fighting’ age, and woe betide any remainer who puts their lives in jeopardy for the sake of military adventurism under a foreign flag, and for a foreign policy over which we in the UK have no control!

        • Edward2
          Posted March 27, 2019 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

          First you called those who said there would be an EU armed force unhinged
          Now having realised the EU armed force will soon happen you now want proof regarding conscription.
          Will there ever be a time when pro EU people like you accept the ambitions of the EU include an armed force and that conscription and community service is not uncommon in member nations.

  44. Kendo
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    Your confusion is total, John Redwood. International Treaty law now says we do NOT leave on 29 March. That is what Mrs May has agreed. The House of commons cannot change international treaty law. How can you not know this?

    • Martin R
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      I read that the UK is a duallist (as opposed to a monist state) and as such has to incorporate international law into domestic law before becoming subject to it. Hopefully Sir John will comment at some point whether this is the case. However I wonder if this government has moved so far beyond any regard for principles, precedent, democracy, laws, that it scarcely even takes such things into consideration any longer.

    • stred
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

      Kendo. Thanks for pointing out so clearly that to sign the EU/Merkel/May WA would be to sign away any hope of regaining sovreignty for the UK.

    • rose
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

      What international treaty? The only one “on the table” as they say is the DWA and that hasn’t been signed.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

      Do you not know that Vonstitutional Law trumps Treaty Law – and you don’t have to intimate that the Treaty Law is international – it’s NOT. Treaties are by definition international but it’s OUR TREATY LAW that holds sway in the U.K.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

      Do you think the EU would be happy to have a member state which could no longer guarantee that it would meet all its obligations as a member state?

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

      I think you’re an opportunist, speaking without thinking first.

      Sir Bill Cash is of great legal intellect. During today’s debate, he asked the Prime Minister for clarity on this matter and that would appear to be Sir John’s position. A comprehensive reply was not forthcoming. Later in the debate, another member asked the Prime Minister why she had not answered the second part of Sir Bill Cash’s question. The Prime Minister could not give an answer but gave her assurance she would find out. We may deduce therefore that the issue is a complicated one and requires clarification.

      One personal point, I don’t think our parliament should be subservient to anyone, least of all to a foreign entity that is so corrupt, inept, and anti-democratic. To give such an entity a final say over the UK’s exit from it is perverse in the extreme.

  45. NickW
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    What is the point of such a short delay?

    Does it by any chance lock us into unavoidable obligations for a long period of time?

    • rose
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

      The point was to break the compelling power of the 29th. Once broken, it can be done again and again.

  46. Gareth Warren
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    It seems pretty clear that parliament should be the only entity authorised to keep us in the EU, the EU here would be acting as a dictatorship.

  47. Everhopeful
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:51 am | Permalink

    Will the house accept what Barrow has done?
    I think he has agreed to an extension before it has been put to both houses????

  48. Alan Joyce
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    As the motions, amendments and oh so clever parliamentary wheezes continue to occupy the minds of MP’s, it seems that the Conservative Party is determined to destroy itself.

    The Prime Minister plots an unpopular move against her own party. I suppose that is not a surprise.

    The Chancellor thinks a second referendum is a coherent proposition and deserves consideration. Oh dear!

    I don’t think that I’ve any wish to take over from the PM who I think is doing a fantastic job says the de facto Deputy PM. Yes, of wrecking the UK’s ‘constitution’ and international reputation.

    The Environment Secretary says it is not the time to change the captain of the ship. Even though the PM is not fit to be the cabin boy.

    What is it to be? Brexit or Brexit in Name Only or No Brexit. Only by opting for a clean break can the Conservative Party hope to continue and prosper.

  49. Christine
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    As written on Conservativewoman this is what to expect if we stay tied to the EU:

    “If UK remains it can expect the following within two to ten years:

    1) Losing its rebate;
    2) Joining Schengen;
    3) Joining the euro;
    4) Uniform corporate and personal taxation;
    5) Uniform regulation of financial services;
    6) EU jurisprudence;
    7) Budgetary supervision by an EU treasury;
    8) Formalised EU armed forces, operational and procurement structures;
    9) EU foreign, defence and security policies taking precedence over national forces and policies;
    10) Mandatory migrant quotas;
    11) Removal of Article 50;
    12) Other transfers of competencies from member states to the EU, i.e. further losses of sovereignty.”

    Do Remainers really know what they are signing us up to? Wake up before it’s too late.

    • MB
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      If we end up staying in the EU after a 2nd referendum, then I think we would need a 3rd referendum, because the Remainers would not have understood wht they were voting for.

    • 'None of the above'.
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

      My Wife and I suspect you could be right. I fear for my Children and Grandchildren, I may be buying the novel ‘1984’ for them to read, it will give some notion as to their future.

      Let’s look on the bright side. We could save a fortune in the Public Sector; no more FoC, MoD, slimmed down Border Force and HMRC. Perhaps we could also shut down Parliament, maybe turn it into a museum?

    • David Price
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

      .. and the Bolkestein directive which will significantly impact local government. You can guarantee there will be many others.

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      To be fair though. It was our egotistical elected Prime Ministers who destroyed several civilisations in the Middle East and caused the biblical refugee crisis which now threatens to engulf and destabilise the EU.

      We have a bit of front expecting to be able to walk away Scot free.

    • Kendo
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

      Lies. Naked blatant lies. NONE of this is in the treaty. NONE. If any such things were suggested, we could veto them instantly – as long as we remain in the EU

    • margaret howard
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

      “Do Remainers really know what they are signing us up to?”

      After over 40 years of belonging and shaping of the EU we remainers know exactly what the EU means to Europe.

      You Brexiteers have fallen for the propaganda of a Farage and the small number of ambitious ERG members out for their own advantage

      • Edward2
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 7:36 am | Permalink

        It is all in the Lisbon and Mastricht treaties and the future strategy is described in the Five Presidents report.
        It amazes me how EU fans fail to accept these public documents exist or what they say.

      • a-tracy
        Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:33 am | Permalink

        “ERG members out for their own advantage” – who specifically are you accusing here margaret and what advantage for themselves are they seeking?

        • hefner
          Posted March 26, 2019 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

          Just a clue “7-figure bonus”

          • Edward2
            Posted March 27, 2019 at 7:50 am | Permalink

            One minute hefner, you say leaving will cause economic doom now here you and margaret claim some want to leave so they can make millions.
            Make your minds up.

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

      Christine

      Do Remainers really know what they are signing us up to? Wake up before it’s too late.

      Yes they do and they do not give a stuff about this country and the people in it.

      When it all goes t**s up they will be out of it cushioned by their over the top index linked pensions and consultancy positions.

  50. robert lewy
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    I am surprised that mention has not been made of the fact that the extension offered by the EU was NOT unconditional. Surely, because there was a condition attached, it could be argued that it was inconsistent with the terms of Art 50 (3) which does not provide for conditionality.

    For the same reason, it appears that the government should have asked Parliament to approve the conditionality as well as the extension period offered before agreeing with EU.

    To put in perspective the conditionality involves a requirement for Parliament to accept a WA which Parliament has already rejected twice and is the source of dissent.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      Not the first time that the EU has bent/broken its own treaties.

    • Denis Coates
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

      Therefore, if the extension is conditional upon the WA being agreed, and the WA is NOT agreed (as is the position now and likely to continue) then there is no extension to the March 29th date and it therefore still stands.
      The only way it can be extended is by getting Parliament to agree the WA which it has not done and likely will not do.
      The fact that Parliament has separately voted against a no- deal is irrelevant because it only represents an opinion.
      Am I right. ?

  51. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Once MPs had voted for one Article 50 extension the psychological barrier would be down and it would then be much easier to get them to vote for another extension, and another, and for longer extensions than the first … we should not have to rely on the other EU countries getting fed up with it all and finally refusing any further delay, we should be able to rely on the integrity of those we have elected to Parliament.

    • Sue Doughty
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:24 am | Permalink

      Other member states do not want British MEPs in their chamber, or British commissioners and reps in the council of ministers so they will not want to have too long an extension.

    • Brian Tomkinson
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:40 am | Permalink

      Denis,
      Most MPs have shown clearly that they have no integrity. They want their own way and are treating the electorate with contempt.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

      As always Denis, you are absolutely right. All I can add is that we have a rotten parliament full of turncoats and quislings.

      Tad

    • Turboterrier.
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

      Denis Cooper

      able to rely on the integrity of those we have elected to Parliament.

      What integrity? 500 odd don’t know the meaning of the word.

  52. Paul H
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    May needs to be pulled up on this and stopped. She is moving from duplicity, deceit and dishonesty on to dictatorship and despotism.

  53. Prigger
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    I feel more people really don’t care for MPs opinionating.
    They’ve had three years of their debating one simple X.
    I blame MPs parents
    They blame their grandparents too

  54. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I’ve just received an acknowledgement from my MP’s assistant saying that she will forward my thoughts and concerns regarding the Irish Backstop on to Theresa … those thoughts and concerns being embodied in this letter sent to our local newspaper:

    “It is reported that Prime Minister Theresa May is planning to offer MPs a range of alternative plans for Brexit.

    I hope she will remember to include the solution to the Irish border problem that I have proposed through these pages, and through letters to her as my constituency MP, for more than a year now.

    Starting with a letter published on February 22 2018 under the heading “Easy solution to EU border conundrum”, still available on the Advertiser website, and followed by a series of other letters.

    If Parliament passed a law that exports to the EU must continue to meet EU requirements then that would only affect the 6 per cent of UK businesses which actually export to the rest of the EU.

    And, crucially, there would be no new need for the Irish authorities to intercept and inspect the goods comprising a mere 0.1 per cent of GDP which are driven across the border into the Republic, and so potentially on to the rest of the EU Single Market.

    There is a misconception that keeping that border open will depend on future technological developments, but the primary necessity is legal.

    It was the UK law implementing the Single European Act which made it possible for the Irish government to remove all checks on its side of the border in 1993, and a new UK law could easily provide the same guarantee.”

    I am not expecting that this will make any difference, not least because Theresa May was and still is a supporter of the EU project and automatically accepts its intrusive Single Market ideology; so I cannot envisage that at this late stage it will suddenly dawn on her that really it is only necessary for EU requirements to apply to goods that we export to the EU, not to all goods in circulation in the UK or exported outside the EU.

    There is talk of “compromise”, and of course it would be a compromise to say that we will continue to enforce EU law just in the specific area of exports to the EU.

  55. Les
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Is there a stronger word than chaos? Mayhem? – this is unbelievable when the rich English language can no longer describe the situation – beyond the wit of man – so pray!

    • Prigger
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      Unsettled

    • stred
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Mayos. Whipped dressing to cover sleight of hand and chaos.

    • Iago
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

      A shambles, a place of execution, – that is what the government, opposition and remainer elite want to send the British people to.

    • Steve
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      Les

      Not necessarily stronger, but very appropriate;

      Entropy.

  56. BR
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Can the EU Council create statutory law?

    I understood that they are NOT the law-making body of the EU, so any offer made by their decisions would need, at the very least, to be ratified in their parliament?

  57. Sue Doughty
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Even messier and more sickening. Just get on with it! Leave means leave, Brexit means Brexit.
    Many present MPs now know their job security is close to zero and are stuffing their expenses to the hilt. They have no reason to vote in the interest of the country that is about to dismiss them.
    So who is speaking for the people?

  58. Original Richard
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    We will see clearly this week who are the globalists who believe that democracy is just a nuisance and should be curtailed, if not removed entirely, and those who believe in democratically run free and sovereign nation states where the people are still allowed to have some influence over their laws and taxes through the ballot box.

    A1 was right yesterday that the Brexit thwarting remainers need to define for us clearly what sort of EU they are wanting us to remain in if Parliament votes for remaining in the EU either via the EU’s WA or by simply revoking Article 50.

    Remainers never tell us where the EU is going, pretending it is a static, unchanging institution.

  59. NickW
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    I understand that Service Chiefs are warning in an open letter to the Telegraph that May’s withdrawal agreement is a risk to National Security, because it puts our Military under the Command and control of the EU.

    It is LITERALLY an Unconditional Surrender Document.

    May needs to be arrested.

    How can Parliament support her?

    • Stred
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      This important letter was ignored by the BBC and other broadcast media. What does this tell us?

  60. piglet
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Preparations for WTO exit continuing apace. Guido now reporting that the EU is now proposing invisible Irish border checks (as originally proposed by leading Brexiteers) in the event of No Deal – thus instantly eliminating the need for any Backstop. Voting for the WA would now be an act of complete folly.

    It seems to me that all roads should now lead to No Deal, but the legal implications of Sir Tim Barrow’s letter are troubling.

  61. Prigger
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    I sent a message to the DUP .Is what I suggest constitutionally possible?
    “The DUP is fast becoming the ONLY party in Parliament which respects even basic democracy. They should be allowed to field candidates throughout the UK instead of wacky UKIPesque parties. I shall suggest it to them. They could have more power in Westminster than they dreamed”

  62. John Probert
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    We should leave with No Deal

  63. Steve P
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    We leave 29th March 2019 – end of. It clearly states in the Withdrawal agreement SI are the mechanisms used to change the date.

    “2018 c. 16SCHEDULE 7 Part 2 Power to amend the exit date 14

    A statutory instrument containing regulations under section 20(4) may not be made unless a draft of the instrument has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.”

    The problem we have is a PM and Remainer MP’s loyal to the EU in preference to their own country. I can’t use any other word except traitors to describe them. Under their definition UK can never leave but that contradicts UN law that every country has the right to be self-determining

    • Steve P
      Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

      One thing I am not sure about regarding the extension. Am I correct in thinking that the PM’s deal must be voted upon by end of this week for either the extensions to April 12 or May 22. Does this not leave the door open to leave on the 29th as promised if there is no vote?

  64. Brit
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    JR
    The Tory Party really had a handful what with Ms Soubry and now this:
    “Sarah Wollaston MP 19h‏
    Verified account
    @sarahwollaston
    Follow Follow @sarahwollaston
    More Sarah Wollaston MP Retweeted Paul Waugh
    Extraordinary. Almost entirely male, all white,1 in 7 old Etonians and most complicit in the lies that led to this absolute #Brexshit. Time for some real leadershipSarah Wollaston MP added,
    Paul Waugh
    Verified account

    @paulwaugh
    Cast list at Chequers was:
    Boris Johnson
    Jacob Rees Mogg
    Steve Baker…
    Show this thread”

  65. Jiminyjim
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    A few short questions, please? Firstly, why have those wishing to ‘Remain’ not been pressed harder to explain exactly what they mean by ‘Remain’ and whether they have any red lines at all? (Centralised Taxation? Being forced into the Euro? Loss of our hard-won rebate? Tax on financial transactions? EU Armed Forces and EU dictated foreign policy?) What about it, Andy?
    Secondly, as someone who worked in France years before the EEC came into being, why is the EU now suggesting they’re going to make travel more difficult than it was even two generations ago? Am I the only one who sees the EU’s tactics through the last four years as very thinly disguised bullying? Why on earth would anyone be in favour of such an organisation?
    Come on, you Remainers who follow this blog – you’ve been challenged many times here to come up with positive reasons for wanting to ‘Remain’. Let’s have them, rather than you just repeating that we’re all headed for Armageddon!

  66. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    https://www.politicshome.com/news/uk/foreign-affairs/brexit/news/102764/minister-says-he-would-be-happy-revoke-article-50-stop

    “Minister says he would be ‘happy’ to revoke Article 50 to stop Brexit ‘paralysis'”

    “… Mr Field made clear he would support revoking Britain’s Brexit request if ministers are handed a free vote.

    “My personal view is that I would be happy to revoke Article 50,” he told the BBC’s Westminster Hour. “But I appreciate that is probably a minority view.”

    It would probably not be a minority view in the Cabinet, hand picked by Theresa May, and probably not among all Tory MPs, and certainly not among all MPs.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/why-the-government-believes-that-voting-to-remain-in-the-european-union-is-the-best-decision-for-the-uk/why-the-government-believes-that-voting-to-remain-in-the-european-union-is-the-best-decision-for-the-uk

    “The referendum on Thursday, 23 June is your chance to decide if we should remain in or leave the European Union.”

    “This is your decision. The government will implement what you decide.”

    Will anybody believe anything that any government says in the future?

  67. Captain Peacock
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    Its just a matter of how the Brexit betrayal will happen because its going to happen.
    See the Tories have chickened out AGAIN getting rid of the worst PM ever.
    They will pay the price at next election.

  68. agricola
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    Not contensious so can we get it moderated. It has been with you since 06.51.

  69. Tony Sharp
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Sir John,
    The only way to stop this disgraceful unconstitutional and undemocratic behaviour is to Remove Theresa May by supporting an Opposition Vote of No Confidenc ein her – let the Payrollers decide if they want to support this Serial Loser and Troublemaker. if they do then split your party from these knaves and take the national membership with you.
    If you do not do so may will act as if the ‘indicative votes’ are legislation and approach the EU for yet more delay and sabotage.

  70. hans christian ivers
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Sir JR

    An interesting perspective on the legal foundation and justification of a postponement and your argument does make sense.

    The country is in a constitutional crisis as never before, the two political parties are very split and losing the confidence of the people and you are talking about legal aspects between UK law and EU law.

    I am sure you think that is the right level to discuss at this point in time?

  71. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Who can delay our exit?

    Theresa May is willing to allow Sinn Fein to delay our exit, sine die; she says that we cannot leave without a deal on March 29th because at present there is no devolved assembly to make preparations, but that could still be the case at any time in the future, at the pleasure of Sinn Fein, even if her deal was approved.

  72. piglet
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    You ask, who can delay our exit?

    It seems a Conservative government can.

  73. agricola
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    During todays debate please draw attention to the way we can extract ourselves from the EU. This I will briefly describe as leave on WTO terms, proposing a trade deal, then invoking Art 24 of GATT. This would ensure continuity of our relationship with the EU until such time as we have an FTA.

    Owen Paterson and later your good self have floated the idea in the recent past. Rumour has it that a government body has even been investigating such a route. You should know by now whether this idea has legs. If it has please put some ERG energy behind it and air it thoroughly before the house.

    It keeps us out of the noxcious WA and saves us £39 billion. We can then suggest to the EU that we can then discuss a much less toxic WA that could benefit both the UK&EU. Please give it air space.

  74. Walter
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Am totally confused by it all now. I have no ideal where She stands with all of this. Am beginning to think what she really wants is to bring the country to a crash out just to show her contempt for the people and parliament for being so stupid in wanting brexit in the first place and for not supporting her WA.

  75. Steve Pitts
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    Mrs May has said she is not prepared to allow us to leave with no deal and if her deal is not approved or the choice of indicative votes is not agreed with the EU she will be asking for a long extension.

  76. Edwardm
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    An informative article.
    If parliament votes to delay leaving the EU, then hostility to the people will have been declared and the Rubicon will have been crossed.

  77. Gordon Nottingham
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    I am at my wits end, am I at 78 years old going to have to pick up a pitchfork just to get what we voted for?
    I truly hope that all the LIARS are rounded up and imprisoned, banned from ever holding office again.
    This has GOT to END.

  78. Bitterend
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

    Listening to Dodds DUP today I still have no idea of what their problem is. If we leave without a deal then the EU will insist on a check on goods entering ROI but checks will happen well away from the border. Of course UK will then have to be concerned in case of non nationals moving freely then there will inevitably have to be checks in NI sea and Airports to stop illegals from entering GB..in effect the dreaded border in the Irish Sea..and still DUP won’t support mrs may WA..doesn’take sense

  79. ian
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

    Leaving without a WA still leading. The HOC need to come up with a deal by early next week to put before Brussels to OK on a majority vote in the HOC and then back to Mrs T May with costing and how the deal will work from Brussels, before she gives approval of a long extension to go forward with that new deal, it looks like May deal is off at the moment.

  80. ian
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    Mrs T Mat says she won’t let no deal happen without parliamentary consent, that the whole point if parliament cannot come up with a new deal to put before Brussels by the 5th April, they will be giving their consent to leave with no deal or have to vote for Mays deal.

  81. James Brown
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    You could have got out on the 29th, no hitches, by supporting the exit deal. A little fudge, but in control of the process. Now, it’s remainers & EU …. Brexiters = The Tottenham of politics

  82. Roy Grainger
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    So what we learned from May today is that she won’t support no deal unless Parliament agrees but then briefed that no deal is still on the table. Also that she won’t support remaining in SM or CU except that her WA says exactly that for as long as it takes to agree a new relationship which will be based on the CU. Also we hear for the first time it is impossible for NI to prepare for No Deal because May has neglected to take appropriate powers. Honestly John, is there NO-ONE in the Conservative party who can stop her talking such nonsense ? Do any of you seriously think the Conservatives will win a single council seat in May ? Quite incredible. I mean there’s something wrong with her isn’t there ?

  83. ChrisS
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    The papers are increasingly talking about there being a need for another General Election to break the deadlock in Parliament.

    According to the Times, Geoffrey Cox is said to have agreed with Mr Barclay that if MPs mandate a long Brexit extension and a softer Brexit then an election might be inevitable.
    With so many MPs having said publically that May must go, the Conservative Party cannot possibly consider going ahead with another election with May as the candidate for PM ? SImilalry, putting in an interim PM and holding an immediate election is an enormous risk with the most likely outcome also being Corbyn in Downing Street.

    Now that even May has said that she won’t allow a WTO exit to happen without the approval of Parliament, that option is a dead duck as well.

    How can Brexiteers continue to hold out against the withdrawal agreement when Brexit itself and the very future of the Government is at stake ?

  84. rose
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    Did I hear right? Did David Lidington say we had to fall in with the EU law because the House had voted twice for “no deal”? I really hope I got that wrong.

  85. JoolsB
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    Watching May in the Commons this afternoon was torture. She is incapable of answering a question with a straight answer. Is no deal still an option John because she seemed to imply it wasn’t. And what did she mean when she said NI was the only part of the United Kingdom without a devolved Government? What with her betrayal over Brexit and now comments like this, what an insult to the ignored people of England.

  86. Ranji Anthony
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    The EU’s revamped Ukrainian surrender document masquerading as T May’s so called WA is not being discussed or debated in parliament or by the media – why??
    I came across this article today and it is a very good read:
    https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/mays-treacherous-endgame/

    • Pominoz
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 5:09 am | Permalink

      Thanks Ranji

      Also a most frightening read.

  87. agricola
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

    Well I must hand it to Mrs May, she batted away all the irrelevances like Geoffrey Boycotte. Not that we moved any further forward except in terms of time. I cannot see the options being debated and offering enlightenment beyond what we have already heard before.

    The electorate voted leave, so if the parliamentarians cannot decide beyond the dismisal of the WA conclusively, then government must take us out if they are to be honest to the electorate, the manifestos of both main parties, and an almost infinite number of vows to leave. Logic agrees with the EU analysis that we will leave without a deal. Mitigate it by using the WTO tools available, surprise everyone and leave them gobsmacked and cautiously happy.

  88. Steve
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

    JR

    Spot on as usual.

    However I am still somewhat puzzled. If I have this right, with only four days to go there is surely not enough road left to get a Statutory Instrument in force, therefore under UK law we would get to 29th with that date still remaining the legal default. Accordingly we would be out on 29th anyway.

    As I understand it, the delay to 12th April was an ‘offer’ by the EU, not a binding obligation on our part. Therefore I do not see why we even need a delay at all.

    Now, the word seems to be that Mr Bercow has written to the EU accepting that offer. If true I would be wondering by what authority does a mere clerk have to tell the EU what Parliament and the rest of us want, in absence of any vote on the matter.

    I hope for his sake he has not gone against the law and the will of the people.

    So, we are heading towards the end of the week without the WA, without SI, without legally agreed delay, and on Friday 29th we leave the EU …………it’d better happen.

  89. a-tracy
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    You can’t believe a word on the news anymore, a couple of weeks ago we were told the Channel Tunnel company were fining the British government for making alternative ferry plans in the case of no deal without including them because there wouldn’t be any problems using the tunnel. Now today we’re told wagons will be queuing back to London!

    Screw the news, the tv news and our main papers, trust, truthfulness and respect is being lost by these organisations every day, soon there won’t be anything left to believe in.

  90. Tony Sharp
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

    Sir John,
    I have seen a report that May does not even require the Delay Brexit SI to be passed this week because she has no intention of authorising the ‘Commencement Notice’ of the Withdrawal Act 2018 Section 1 to Repeal the ECA 1972.
    Can you explain to us if this is true – it would mean the whole Act and the Withdrawal Notice are a huge charade and that the UK can not Leave the jurisdiction of the ECJ even under UK Law. If this is so can you explain to us why you should continue sitting on the Conservative benches if you cannot get rid of this woman by the simple expedient of supporting or at least abstaining in a No Confidence motion?

    Surely nothing this woman says is worth the momentray air it is uttered on – just like any undertaking to resign the premiership if written in blood would be found to have faded seconds afterwards. If she gets her PWA though on the threats on No Brexit she will remain in post to create ever more havoc.

  91. L Jones
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    We keep hearing that the ‘only way’ to get T May’s deal passed is for her to resign. What??

    What the heck has her resignation got to do with it? It is STILL a Surrender Treaty, no matter where she is – halfway up Nelson’s Column for all we care. A bad deal is STILL a bad deal.

    If she stayed on and rejected her ‘deal’ and let us escape on Friday, the praise heaped upon her would surely be to her satisfaction – she seems to be self-seeking and arrogant enough to appreciate the laud and honour it would bring her.

    • Chris
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      LJ, I agree. What is this reported madness from Brexiter MPs, Johnson and Rees-Mogg that they are going to support her deal? Absolutely unforgiveable.

  92. ian
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    The remain MPs are trying to find new consent among themselves for a new deal to put to the EU, but they forget that any deal they come up with is outside of the withdrawal agreement and that WA stand as it is on any new deal which will be outside of the WA and will only form part of the future relationship.

    So how can they vote for a new deal with the EU when they refuse to vote for the WA, no WA, no new deal on the future relationship.
    They call themselves politicians but are just sitting there talking crap, anything they come up with has to be coupled with the WA, the WA which they say is so bad they will not vote for it.

  93. ian
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

    Here we go round mulberry bush on a cold and frosty morning.

  94. mary
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    Someone on ComWom suggested that the Leaver MPs could stop May’s evil tricks this week by filibustering. I have a very low opinion of Rees Mogg which has been conformed during the Brexit pantoimime, but here’s his chance to redeem himself if indeed he really wants Brexit which I doubt.

    • Chris
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

      I do not think R-M does want Brexit that much, mary. His gentlemanly behaviour seems to have just been a mask for what I consider to be lily-livered “action” i.e. the reported u turn, in which he will support May’s deal apparently in return for her saying she would step down. How ridiculous can one get? May stepping down does not alter her deal and Political Declaration, which will be put into a binding treaty making us a vassal state of the EU. The WA and PD should be thrown out and May should be as well, and swiftly.

  95. glen cullen
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

    The leave voters in the country aren’t demonstrating nor shouting because they won, they don’t have to do anything; they believed parliament would implement the result of the referendum ie leave the EU and all its institutions. After we leave we would negotiate a trade deal.

    The referendum was the one time the people where actually allowed to make a decision. I fear for our democracy if we don’t leave under WTO terms on the 29th March.

    MPs made a contract with the people in good faith and in law….sadly MPs have breached that contract

  96. miami.mode
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    ……..She will need Labour votes to get it through…….

    It makes you wonder which party she actually represents.

  97. Caterpillar
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

    Following tonight’s vote we now know there is no confidence in the Government, MPs having taken control from the Government making this clear. Consistent with this, to save democracy there now needs to be an immediate motion of no confidence in the Government. It is time for both a General Election and extension of Article 50 (hence taking part in European elections). Although May serially miss peaks she did indicate she would not lead the Conservatives into the next election so that issue would be sorted at the same time.

    Absolutely not the WA and any soft alternative that maintains UK in C.U.

  98. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    The Government has used its law officers to implement a Statutory Instrument delaying the exit date until April 12th. They think that’s legal and they think that’s enough. I’m amazed. I would have thought that changing the exit date would mean altering the text of the existing Withdrawal Act, with three readings in the Commons and three readings in the Lords.

    As I write, the Beckett amendment has been defeated (thank goodness for small mercies) but the Letwin amendment has passed. The Commons collectively will be in charge of business. Who will their ‘Prime Minister’ be? Who will their ‘Leader of the House’ be? Will Sir Oliver Letwin be accountable? It’s going to be chaos, much more chaotic than this Government. Mrs May and Andrea Leadsom should not lift a finger to help and just let them twist in the wind. It is planned to hold indicative votes on seven options in turn, varying from No Deal to Revoke Article 50. It is not impossible that all seven will be defeated. What then?

    Contempt of parliament is appropriate because this rotten parliament is contemptible. We need a General Election to get rid of it. It is probably too late to hold one on Thursday 27th June. It is not desirable to hold one during the school holidays. So the best shot is to support a Labour No Confidence motion just before the summer recess, with a view to holding an election in late September or October. That will give Brexiteers ample time to prepare a manifesto and organise.

    Sir John, you must surely recognise that you cannot be in the same Party as Amber Rudd, Kenneth Clarke and Dominic Grieve at that election. We must either deselect pro-EU Tories or form a Brexiteers’ Party.

  99. Simon Coleman
    Posted March 25, 2019 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

    ‘The government’s idea that it needs to appeal to Parliament generally for support means it has given up on finding a Conservative answer that the governing MPs will vote for.’ There is no Conservative answer…because a) you’re a minority government and b) you’re hopelessly divided anyway. And because there is no Conservative answer, only Parliament can explore potential alternative answers. Your normal complacent tone has gone. Sounds like you’re really rattled.

    • Edward2
      Posted March 26, 2019 at 7:40 am | Permalink

      Parliament doesn’t seem to know what it wants either.
      Various contradictory votes.
      They want to overturn the referendum result by one method or another.
      It won’t end well at the next election for a large number of MPs

  100. Mike Wilson
    Posted March 26, 2019 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    Even I would vote to remain, now, rather than have this mess. And a soft Brexit is the worst of all worlds.

    What do we do about the House of Commons ignoring and overruling the people? Well, all I hope is that most of the 17.4 million vote for the Brexit Party in the next election. That will destroy Tory and Labour MPs who think they have the right to ignore us.

    I keep hearing MPs prattling on about ‘what will satisfy this House of Commons’. Well, guess what, many of us don’t give a **** what the House of Commons wants. We want what we said we wanted in the referendum. To LEAVE the EU. Hang the consequences. The consequences will be ours. Of course, the consequences may be very positive. But I guess we won’t know until 2022 when the Brexit Party wins power!

    What, I wonder, do the MPs trying to frustrate Brexit think will happen in the future? That we’ll all just take it and go back to normal – voting in alternate Labour and Tory governments who do not give a **** what they put in their manifesto!

    Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Vote for the Brexit Party in the next election.

  101. Stephen O
    Posted March 26, 2019 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    Why can’t you (and just a few of the Tory Brexiteers) of trigger a vote of no confidence in this government before the vote to delay is passed? Wouldn’t Labour support it?

    Why do the the Remainers seem to have all the clever ideas to overturn the referendum result, while the leavers have no ideas and play by the rules? It is just a few more days if nothing further is done by the house of commons and we are out.

    Reply Only the official opposition has the power to table a motion of no confidence that will be debated and voted

  102. Jeremiah Jones
    Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    “FILIBUSTER TIL FRIDAY” was the title of a piece in the Conservative Woman website. Just do it man, and in the House of Lords too – you’ll never win a Brexit vote there, but surely there are enough Brexit peers to pout their names down to speak, and talk out the SI.

    Reply The SI has not yet been scheduled for debate. Normally SIs are limited to just 90 minutes, as we would need to amend the Business motion to talk for a long time on the SI, which Parliament is unlikely to approve. There are few opportunities these days to talk anything out, as most business is timetabled.

  103. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted March 26, 2019 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    Andrea Leadsom’s presentation of the process leading to the postponement of the Article 50 date – to one of two alternatives! – was most unconvincing. A request by parliament for an extension to June 30th was modified by the EU to an extension either to April 12th or May 22nd. It is asserted that the Statutory Instrument resulting from this EU decision takes precedence over the date in the Withdrawal Act, on the grounds that EU law takes precedence over UK law. But the EU hasn’t passed a law, has it? It’s worth a challenge in the Supreme Court. You’ve nothing to lose.

  104. Simon Coleman
    Posted March 26, 2019 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    Well go ahead and vote against an SI. Brexit is being delayed and that’s the new reality. I know reality isn’t your preferred realm of existence but you won’t be able to stop it. From the beginning, your belief has been that the Conservative Party owns Brexit and nobody else should have any influence over it. The irony is that you ERG people are so anti-business that you don’t belong in the Conservative Party.

    • Edward2
      Posted March 27, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      Ridiculous argument Simon.
      We have a pro EU Parliament.
      And a pro EU Conservative party.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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