Sovereignty

We voted for Brexit to take back control. Brexit voters wish to live in a free self governing independent country. Remain politicians thought the vote should be about trade. They wrongly asserted we would definitely be better off in and thought that was all that mattered.

I have always thought sovereignty mattered more. I also think that we can follow policies that increase our prosperity once we restore our full powers of self government.I have set out at some length how we can be better off out. I can no more guarantee that than Remain politicians can guarantee greater income if we stay in. It will depend on how we use our freedoms and how the EU use theirs.

The Remain politicians have used a variety of ploys and devices to try to delay, dilute or prevent our exit. One of their first was the court case to prevent Ministers sending in our notice to quit without further Parliamentary processes, despite the clear referendum vote. The Miller case produced a useful defence of Parliamentary sovereignty in the verdict. I had always urged Mrs May to hold a Parliamentary vote on a one clause Bill to speed us up and was not surprised by the Court decision, even though it was clearly a delaying tactic.

The Judges said

“This is because Parliamentary sovereignty is a fundamental principle of the UK constitution, as was conclusively established in the statutes referred to in para 41 above. It was famously summarised by Professor Dicey as meaning that Parliament has “the right to make or unmake any law whatsoever; and further, no person or body is recognised by the law as having a right to override or set aside the legislation of Parliament” – op cit, p 38. The legislative power of the Crown is today exercisable only through Parliament. This power is initiated by the laying of a Bill containing a proposed law before Parliament, and the Bill can only become a statute if it is passed (often with amendments) by Parliament (which normally but not always means both Houses of Parliament) and is then formally assented to by HM The Queen. Thus, Parliament, or more precisely the Crown in Parliament, lays down the law through statutes – or primary legislation as it is also known – and not in any other way “

This is now very helpful to the cause of Parliament legislating to sort out our border, customs and trade issues for the UK, notwithstanding the EU’s view of the Withdrawal Agreement. The Withdrawal Agreement is only the law because of the Act of Parliament that brings it into UK law. The UK Parliament is therefore free to amend it as it sees fit.

There are those who still seem to think it would be bad faith for the UK to exercise its sovereign powers in this way, and claim it is a breach of international law to do so. This Agreement between the UK and the EU is not some world law enforced by some world court. It is an international Agreement where the two sides disagree about its meaning and each claim bad faith about the other. Such disputes have to be sorted out between the two parties. This dispute could still be sorted by negotiation. Otherwise it will be sorted by the UK exercising its sovereignty over our single market and customs union, and the EU exercising its powers over its own. Doubtless neither side will like the other’s settlement. Each has to respect the powers of the other, as clearly stated in the Withdrawal Agreement itself.

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270 Comments

  1. Peter
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:07 am | Permalink

    It’s really good to be able to say something positive on here, as opposed to the usual negativity.

    I was very pleasantly surprised by the size of the government’s majority last night.

    Nigel Farage will also be returning to help with future swamp draining.

    Things are looking up.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:19 am | Permalink

      You can protest until you are blue in the face, about why others should not have a low opinion of you, and why you are so virtuous.

      However, you are utterly powerless, and rightly so, to prevent them from being the judges of things which are wholly proper to them, and of forming their own opinions about those.

      Millions around the world, and many in influential positions, are doing that right now, and there is not a thing that you can do to stop them.

      • Hope
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:32 am | Permalink

        JR, will the traitors lose the whip or should we expect more shenanigans. If it is good for Mr Lewis to lose the whip then the actions of those last night acting against national interest and for the EU!

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

        Ah, the famous ‘millions around the world’ who, like most people this morning are thinking about breakfast, work, getting the kids to school etc. They are also, apparently, thinking about Britain’s standing on ‘the world stage’. I spend a lot of time thinking about the USA’s standing on ‘the world stage’ and Russia’s too. Millions do too, it seems.

        Oh no, hold on, that’s bolleaux. I never think about pointless things or imaginary concepts.

      • Robert McDonald
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

        And millions will be saying its good to see democracy working despite the bigots who purport to support it trying to block the process if they don’t like the peoples decision. They will respect such a nation more than they would if we had bent over to the autocratic self serving eurocracy.

      • beresford
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:10 am | Permalink

        Millions of others have lives and understand that we are not playing a game of cricket. Other countries will make agreements with us if they feel they are in their national interest and otherwise not make them, unlike the EU which seems to believe they are entitled to punish us for following the rules to leave.

      • jerry
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:17 am | Permalink

        @MiC; Everything you say is so very true of disgruntled Remain europhiles, oh how you -like the EU- must utterly hate democracy!

      • ukretired123
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

        MIC rants again-
        You are so pompous and righteous too. Give us a break.

      • IanT
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

        I’m sure you were very pleased to see that we’ve just signed a trade deal with Japan Andy – the third largest economy in the world. The Far East is of course also one of the fastest growing areas of the world economy.

        The EU’s share of that world economy is down to 17% now that we have left the EU – and is predicted to fall to just 12% over the next 20-30 years. Europe is the slowest growth area on the planet.

        It doesn’t please me to say that some predictions are that the UK population will exceed that of Germany by 2030 – making us the most populous country in Europe. I therefore have a feeling that there will be many in the 88% of the world economy (outside of the EU) that will be very happy to do business with us.

        I know these simple facts will upset you but please believe me when I say – no one out there in the real world cares a fig for our machinations with the EU – it’s just a poker game and they know it. All they want to know is – Are we going to be open for Business?

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

        The usual British exceptionalism from Martin there, thinking that “millions around the world” are even aware of this issue or could care less. Germany broke international law very recently, millions around the world – including you Martin – don’t even know about it.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:47 am | Permalink

        Yes Martin, they are once again doffing their caps at the British way of resolving grievances. By a publicly authorised vote. No bombs, stabbing, attacks on police, trade sanctions or tanks involved.
        We are once again commanding respect, and there is not a thing you can do to stop it.
        Thank God!

        • bill brown
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:56 pm | Permalink

          Lynn Atkinson

          “we are once again commanding respect”

          Lynn, you must be thinking of anothe time or nation as you are the only one , who can see the respect

          • graham1946
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:35 am | Permalink

            Ah, another just like Andy who personally knows millions of people.

          • NickC
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

            Bill B, You think remaining subjugated to the EU after a national democratic vote to Leave commands respect? Good grief!!

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

        Peter isn’t protesting you are Martin.
        Where did you get that idea from.

        And where is your evidence to claim that “millions around the world”
        I had a brief look at some newspaper headlines from “around the world” apart from the Guardian I found very few with headlines about the vote in Parliament last night.

      • Arthur Wrightiss
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 10:32 am | Permalink

        And many millions around the world have formed an opinion about the appalling behaviour of the unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats in the EU.

      • Longinus
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:09 am | Permalink

        Ironic that this all applies to you and your inability to accept a democratic decision re Brexit.

      • Peter
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

        yawn……..

        • Peter
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

          For transparency :-

          not the Peter who posted the original positive comment.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

        Martin, I doubt very much that there are “millions” around the world who are remotely interested. Of the people around the world – probably thousands – who are, the notion that, after a vote to Leave, the EU still insists on controlling what happens within the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is looked upon as grotesque. Certainly countries will now be much more clearly aware of the vindictive belligerence of the EU.

      • Amanda
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

        Just to quote Sir John from yesterday. Nothing more needs to be said Martin.

        “The rest of the world would think it bizarre if the U.K meekly accepted continuing EU controls over our laws, trade rules and borders from 1 January. Those countries negotiating trade deals with us want to ensure the U.K is fully in charge of its own markets and laws, so they can sign an Agreement with an independent country with the full range of trade powers. They do not want a U.K. under the control of the EU, or with a split domestic market with issues into and out of Northern Ireland.”

      • DavidJ
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:55 am | Permalink

        Just stop whining Martin.

    • jerry
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

      @Peter; “[an ex leader of UKIP/TBP] will also be returning to help with future swamp draining.”

      Oh I do hope not, UKIP are the last who will drain any swamp, in fact they are more likely to train their fire hoses on the swamp (rather than pump swamp dry), for there lies their only power base. The 2016 referendum was won despite UKIP, not because of their ‘leadership’ (skills)…

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

        You have no idea, Jerry. In our locality (two constituencies) the Leave activists on the streets (leafleting, street stalls, lamp-post signs, garden billboards) and at debates were either all or mostly UKIP (Brexit Party did not exist at that point).

        We had 30+ leaflet distributors, only one being Tory. There were 20+ who manned the stalls – only one Tory. The so-called Leave Tory MP was frequently invited but never showed up, even to public debates where the Remain LibDems, Labour, etc, did. The Tories were noteworthy for their absence. The only other separate Leave presence was “Green Leaves”.

        • jerry
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

          @NickC; It is you who has no idea, we do not need a rabble, we need dedicated and able politicos.

          Yes we had the activists on the streets to, all the leafleting, street stalls, lamp-post signs, garden billboards and debates etc. but eventually the locals saw through the public persona to that of the real politician and party beneath – how can I put it politely, I know, sailing down the local river with all lights blazing.

          2015 was UKIP’s best ever local GE result, coming second, replacing the LD; but by 2017 Labour was 2nd, LD 3rd, an IND 4th with UKIP back in 5th… I might just add, UKIP had a very strong rabble in my local area too, that Mr Farage was not only our MEP, but had his MEP constituency office locally, thus I probably have a greater clue with regards both UKIP/TBP and the man than you will ever gain.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:14 am | Permalink

      Indeed. Nearly it was most unpleasant to hear all the MP speaking against this bill be they Labour, SNP or Conservative. Ed Milliband for example (who gave us the appallingly damaging and vastly expensive Climate Change Act).

      Much anti-Trump talk on the BBC about him suggesting better forestry management is the best way to try to prevent future fires in California. This is of course perfectly true. Does anyone really think that lowering the tiny CO2 levels would be a better plan? There is no real evidence it would work and it certainly it would take very many years to have any significant effect even if it did work. Biden & BBC people do seem to have zero grasp of logic, science or reality. Just a belief in the CAGW religion and a hatred of Trump.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

        Really not nearly!

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

        Lifelogic, The really crazy thing about the CAGW believers is that they have prevented standard fire management measures (eg: firebreaks) being implemented, resulting in even more CO2 and particulate emissions due to uncontrolled fires in the USA and Australia. It’s the same “re-wilding” nonsense that caused excessive and unnecessary flooding in the UK.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      I am also very positive – I hope and wish that we walk out of EU deal 15th Oct and go WTO, and that covid-19 lockdown is cancelled in all respects

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

        +1 That would do the trick nicely. Even Boris’ toy train would be an irrelevance then.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      Gina Miller, the gift that on giving.
      It is good to see something positive and the government putting Britain’s interests first.
      Each time Barnier or any other Brussels spokesperson opens their mouths indicates that we are right to leave.
      Just how do Brussels think they are going to stop trade between Northern Ireland and the mainland. Have they got armed patrol boats.
      Everything is reciprocal and if they ban food from Britain then we do the same.
      There is nothing the EU provides which can’t be got elsewhere.

  2. Tabulazero
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:10 am | Permalink

    If it is acceptable for the UK to change its domestic law in order to circumvent an international treaty then it becomes equally acceptable for the EU to do exactly the same after it reaches an agreement with the UK before or after the end of the transition period.

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:25 am | Permalink

      Do you approve of the EU’s attempt to threaten the UK with imposing restrictions on the movement of food from GB to NI? If you were PM would you have allowed that threat to be made without taking some counter-measure?

      • Tabulazero
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

        If I was the PM, I would start by not telling lies.

        How do you think the EU could achieve what you describe ?

        With Michel Barnier in a rubber dinghy in the middle of the Irish sea ?

        Please be serious.

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:42 am | Permalink

          You are dodging the point.
          Barnier did threaten the UK with restrictions of the movement of foodstuffs to Northern Ireland.
          That is the serious point.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

            Barnier has asked the UK to provide the plan (if any) for its future phytosanitary regulation because the EU needs it … and incidentally so do the British farmers.

            But since planning ahead and doing the heavy lifting this requires is not the current government’s forte… he got nothing.

            Could the current Conservative cabinet return soon to bog-standard levels of incompetence, please ?

            P.S.: looks like the test & trace system is not fit for purpose. Why am I not surprised ?

          • Edward2
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

            The system we have now is acceptable to both sides.

            Why would it suddenly not be acceptable on the 1st of January 2021.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:55 am | Permalink

            Edwards2:

            Very simple to understand: because the EU is not dumb enough to not have noticed that rules and systems change and that the UK has all the intention of changing them.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

            But if nothing changes on both sides why should it be a problem after we leave?

        • graham1946
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:40 am | Permalink

          It’s Barmier who needs to get serious, and soon.

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 10:41 am | Permalink

          Tabulazero, Remains can hardly claim the moral high ground on deciding who is lying given such corkers as your claim that we “get almost £10 back” for every £1 we give to the EU. Please be serious.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:57 am | Permalink

            NickC,

            Be careful or I bring the BrexitBus back into this conversation…

            or even better:

            our host very own “we hold all the cards”.

            Your choice.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

            There was nothing incorrect about the Brexit bus.
            And we do hold all the cards.

            PS
            Who’s side are you on?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:26 am | Permalink

      Well, quite, and if, as John claims, he truly cares about sovereignty, then he would campaign for a review of the appalling, one-sided extradition arrangements with the US, and of their carte-blanche use of British soil for their own national military adventures, surveillance of our European allies and so on. These actual abuses go immeasurably beyond any concessions made to the European Union’s institutions.

      No, I think that he rather, uses this argument as a pretext to cause as many residual problems for the European Union as possible, now that the attempt to precipitate its destruction by brexit has so signally failed.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

        What about the European Extradition Treaty where Germany is a signatory but ‘opted-out’ of extraditing Germans! Talk about one-sided treaties!
        Martin you should stop posting. Every post undermines your politics.

        • Tabulazero
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:20 am | Permalink

          Most EU countries have provisions against extraditing their own citizens to non-EU countries with the glaring exception of the UK who has no problem shopping its own subjects.

          Draw the conclusion that you want.

      • czerwonadupa
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

        The Americans have not imposed themselves but are here by invitation as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. They are also in Poland under the same organisation unlike the Russians who having removed one dictatorship from that country imposed their own for 45 years.
        The Poles showed how to get rid of an unwanted power by peaceful means which 26 years later the British followed their lead through their referendum. But unlike in Poland here the democratic vote has not been accepted by the losers who unlike the Russians have not departed but have spent the past 4 years desperately trying to undermine the will of the people in a country they despise..

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

        Maybe he will.
        And the EU extradition treaty too.

        You just dont get it Martin.
        Millions voted to leave the EU and won the 2016 referendum.

        To become a free and independent nation.
        Like over 150 other nations not in the EU.

    • graham1946
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:33 am | Permalink

      They can do what they like after 31st,December, in the end we will do perfectly well with no deal at all, just like we have with the majority of the world and where with ‘no deal’ we also make a profit from our business with them. We’ve lost billions since the wonderful ‘deal’ we had in the EU, apart from the cost of membership etc.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

      The EU does that all the time.

    • beresford
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:13 am | Permalink

      I agree. If we attempt to erect barriers to prevent food exports between parts of the EU, the EU must be entitled to circumvent them.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:18 am | Permalink

      Of course the EU will change anything which doesn’t work for France or Germany.
      Look at us naively sticking to agreed 3% EU budget deficits until other countries didn’t think that such a bright idea after all and broke them.

    • Mary M.
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

      @Tabulazero.
      The EU is not a country.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      Exactly. That’s why we needed the protection of the new act.

    • IanT
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      Of course they will – but they still need to be consistent, as whatever they do will effect all of their ‘customers’. Just accept that the EU (right from the get-go) wanted to make this as difficult as possible for the UK. Nothing will change going forward.

      Accept this as being a given – but also accept that the more difficult the EU becomes, the faster they will drive down their share of our market – something Europe’s slow growth economy really cannot afford to do.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:48 am | Permalink

      Who thought they would not do that? But they have authority only over their own jurisdiction, not over us!

      • Tabulazero
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:21 am | Permalink

        Since Japan has imposed restriction on the UK’s ability to use state aid… You might want to reconsider.

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

          That is just standard bilateral trade arrangements
          ie no open ended state aid without a restructuring plan to reduce losses.
          Affects both sides.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:58 am | Permalink

            That’s an improvement on what the UK has offered the EU so far which is exactly nothing.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

            How can you improve on a free trade agreement?

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      Exactly thats what Sovereignty is about – doing your own thing

      I don’t care what laws on trade is passed in Chile, Korea or the EU

      I’m only interested in the UK

    • Original Richard
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      The WA is not an international treaty but an agreement between the UK and the EU which is why it is called a “WA” and not a “WT”.

      It is of course perfectly acceptable for the EU to also make changes if it so wishes.

      History teaches us that an “agreement” or indeed a “treaty” is not worth the paper its written on unless both sides believe it is fair and beneficial to their own side.

      The EU, because it believes its UK supporters will bring down the government and reverse the democratic will of the UK electorate, are still not prepared to negotiate on the basis that the UK is a sovereign country.

      Mr. Barnier is still saying that although the UK has sovereignty over its waters it does not mean it has control over the fish caught in these waters!

      • Dennis
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

        Breaking Intl. Law? The UN has found that the killing of Qassem Soleimani broke international law.

        We don’t hear much about that these days from those in Parliament shouting that we might do so if in fact it is such a case.

    • Edward2
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:33 am | Permalink

      It has already.
      ThevEU first said it would agree to a free trade arrangement then it added the requirements of future state aid control and future regulatory alignment over the UK with only EU courts being the method of deciding any disputes.

      • Tabulazero
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

        The EU is perfectly happy to give the UK a free trade agreement that respects the integrity and the institutions of the Single-Market which is something the Brexiters look to be unable to understand.

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:44 am | Permalink

          Many other nations that trade with the EU who are not former members have no problems “respecting the integrity of the single market” and trade happily and have done for years.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

            None of them are starting from the heart of the Single-Market by virtue of having been a member for 40 years.

            The level of entitlement the Brexiters have never ceases to amaze me.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

            Why should that be a factor.

            Just treat the UK similarly to any independent nation that currently trades with the EU.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 8:00 am | Permalink

            Because the UK enjoy a de facto advantage that the EU does not want to let it have from fear it would use it to undermine the Single-Market, which is exactly what the British government intends to do.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

            Undermine the single market?
            Do any other independent democratic nations try to do that?
            Has the UK said anything other than wanting a straightforward free trade arrangement ?

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 10:47 am | Permalink

          Tabulazero, You seem unconcerned about the integrity and the institutions of the UK. It is not the UK trying to control what happens within your EU empire, but the EU demanding it should control us. What bit of Leave don’t you understand?

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 8:03 am | Permalink

            NickC, it is the UK that is leaving not the other way round. The job of the EU is to fight for the EU of which the UK is not a member anymore.

            The EU understand Leave better than the Brexiters because leaving means leaving behind all the advantages they still think the UK should be entitled to.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

        Edward 2

        the negotiations are on-going so let us just wait and see

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:46 am | Permalink

          I am not optimistic because the issues now firmly required by the EU are so fundamental to the required independence of the UK that I think a deal can not be reached.
          It isnt a question of a few minor clauses or a few percentage points on a tariff.

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

            There goes the car industry in the UK and a big chunk of the City in a couple of years.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

            You reckon?
            Car tariffs are 10%
            The currency can move up and down more than that in a year.

            And we will collect far more in tariffs than the EU

          • Tabulazero
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 8:03 am | Permalink

            Edwards2, margins are razor thin. 10% can easily be the different between a profit or a loss.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

            Companies in the UK have plainly managed to survive over the last 45 years of EU membership.

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 10:49 am | Permalink

          Bill B, You mean the threats from the EU are ongoing.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      Tabulazero, The UK clause is only operational after an EU attempt to carry out its vindictive threat – against the spirit and letter of the WA – to break up the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

      • Lennon
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

        The whole spirit and letter of the WA is to break up the United Kingdom of NI and GB. Theresa May refused to do it. The EU didn’t want to do it. Boris insisted on breaking up the UK, won an election promising to break up the UK and in January every single Tory MP voted in favour of breaking up the UK. If you’re angry, be angry with the right people

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

          Mrs May proposed surrendering the entire country rather than just NI! What’s to be angry about? 😤

        • NickC
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

          Lennon said: “The EU didn’t want to do it”. Hahahaha . . . only because the EU preferred the subjugation of the whole of the UK. The EU’s attitude is summed up by Verhofstadt’s staffers agreeing: “We finally turned them into a colony”. That’s what you support.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

        NickC

        this so-called threat , can you kindly present it workd by word as I do not belive you

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:48 am | Permalink

          It was recorded and broadcast on TV

          • bill brown
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 5:43 am | Permalink

            Esward 2

            do you believe everything you watch on TV just like your brother Nick C

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:47 am | Permalink

            That is a ridiculous comment.

            There was a documentary where you could clearly see and hear what people were saying.

            Why deny it?
            How more blindly pro EU can you get bill.

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 10:53 am | Permalink

          Bill B, You must live a very isolated existence, then. The EU threats – both within the negotiations and to the UK food industry – have been widely reported.

  3. Mick
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    Why is it that great politicians like yourself and Bill Cash and the other true British patriots of our great country can see nothing wrong in the internal market bill yesterday, oh I know what it is it’s because Westminster still as bias Eu loving muppets in it, the general election might be 4 years away but we the public are not stupid, so be warned Eu loving muppets we will have our country back to be run by true British men and women and not by foreigners like merkel and macron

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

      Well, your great politician – in your opinion – has spelled it out for you.

      Parliament is sovereign.

      Not. The. People.

      Got that finally?

      • Edward2
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:49 am | Permalink

        You cannot see a connection between the Parliament and the electorate?
        80 seat majority.
        Get Brexit done.

      • NickC
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:11 am | Permalink

        Martin

        Again I have to spell it out for you in your favoured style of single word sentences.

        Parliamentary sovereignty applies solely to legislation (see Dicey).

        The. People. Elect. Each. Parliament.

        So. In. UK. Democracy. The. People. Are. Sovereign.

        Got that finally?

  4. Mark B
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    One of the fundamental reasons I doubt these so called negotiations are more to do with Association Membership than a FTA, is because of the EU’s insistence that we must abide by their rules, even in our own internal market, and that it must be subject to ECJ oversight. No FTA in the world, not even between the EU and Canada does.

    The EEC/EU has always been presented to us as nothing more than a trade block. In truth it has has always been about EVER CLOSER UNION and mearly uses trade as both cover and a means to fullfill its political ambition of a united single Europe. This can and will never happen, their is simply no demos for it.

    What all this mess reminds me of is how difficult it was, and still is, for former French colonies to gain their independence from France. The French would only allow them their limited liberty at a cost. A cost I might add that those certainly in Africa continue to pay – literally !

    The EU is a Franco – German dominated cartel and we, and others, have been swindled.

    • Andy
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      It is hardly a secret the EU is about ever closer union – it says so in its treaties.

      You are right that there is no demand from people for a single United States of Europe.

      There may be one day in the future but there is certainly not now and I certainly don’t envisage it in my lifetime.

      Not one single country in the EU has argued for there to be a USE – and yet for it to happen they would all need to agree unanimously. And not one single one of them does. France doesn’t want to stop being France. Italy doesn’t want to stop being Italy.

      It was always a spurious argument from the Brexiteers that there would be a United States of Europe when there just won’t be.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

        I remember that argument the first time round, when we were fighting to stay out of the TREATY OF ROME – the Common Market. The people were not calling for unity, and never have done, that’s why they were lead step by step blindfolded – til it’s too late. Actually the Euro makes it too late for many. And I have a letter from the then Chancellor, Ken Clarke, hand amended and signed, refuting my assertion that the Bilderberg Group had agreed to implement the Single Currency at Vouliagmeni. He like you, said it would not be done, could not be done, but it was done. You have to change the record Andy, if you seek to bamboozle us again.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

        Andy, The very existence of the Euro is one main argument for a USE by the EZ countries. The existence of the EU’s dirigiste – centralised state control – is another. You don’t expect the EU or its sub-states to tell you the truth, do you? The whole EU empire has been created by stealth and lies.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        That isnt how the EU works.
        The Presidents and Commission have a plan and they are steadily working towards it.
        One day in the future as you say yourself.
        No need for a vote.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      The Franks have been swindled too. It’s German Europe!

      • bill brown
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

        Lynn Atkinson,

        This is fortunately not a German Europe, but this will not change your mind , even if you comemnts make very little sense

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:52 am | Permalink

          You carry on believing that bill.
          One day the penny will drop.

          Even German voters are getting restless having to pay huge sums into the EU pot.
          After 31st December this year they will be paying in even more.

          • bill brown
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 5:41 am | Permalink

            Edward 2
            as will a lot of northern European nations, wake up

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

            Thanks for agreeing to my point.

            27 nations and only 9 paying in.
            Soon it will be only 8
            And the EU has plans for more new take out members.

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:12 am | Permalink

          Bill, He who pays the piper calls the tune.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      +1

  5. Adam
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:22 am | Permalink

    We in the UK are free to make our own decisions.
    What people from other countries think or do is a matter for them.

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:24 am | Permalink

      Adam: I agree. We should not pay so much heed as to what other countries/people think of us. Some will always dislike us, and criticise, no matter what we do. We should put this Country first in all respects, and ignore the name calling of others.

      • Andy
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:56 am | Permalink

        That’s exactly what Iran and Russia and North Korea say when they break international law. That it is nobody else’s businesses.

        What an embarrassment you have turned our country into.

        • Dennis
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

          Andy – and the US.

        • NickC
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

          Andy, We are merely protecting ourselves from the predatory, vindictive EU. No EU law breaking = no subsequent UK law breaking. It’s that simple.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

          I’m not embarrassed. I was when we were lapdogs of the EU.

      • IanT
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        We really do fool ourselves if we think others care that much about this matter. It’s a spate between the EU and the UK – part of the Poker game going on.

        I’ve worked abroad for many years and it’s always been very hard to find out what was happening in the UK from local media. Many years ago, with 50+ TV channels in my Hotel room in San Francisco and none of them covering the results of the UK election that evening (this was pre-internet) – I had to phone home to find out.

        A storm in a tea cup – all forgotten within days as the next political “Hurricane” arrives…

        • Cheshire Girl
          Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

          IanT.

          My late Husband and I lived in California for 15 years, and when we wanted to know what was going on in the UK, we used to go to the local newsagent, and get a 2 week old copy of The Times. It was the only way, we could read any UK news.

        • M Brandreth- Jones
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 1:27 am | Permalink

          Yes Ian T these petty squabbles outlining who said this and that really doesn’t count. Big business and corruption leads. People are being duped daily .I find it sad that the world is led by lies , manipulation and greed ,but alas I cannot do anything about others . The only positive thing we can do is be true to ourselves and that is belittled by the jump on the band waggon type who huff and puff and look at each other in awe of their collective, what they think, is a verbal victory and suppose truth as naive.

      • glen cullen
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

        +1

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

        We might get some respect by calling out the EU playground bullies.
        Trump certainly did.

    • Lennon
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

      Agreed, and you agreed to put a border in the Irish sea

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

        Lennon, No, I didn’t. But the Remains in Parliament did.

  6. Pominoz
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:25 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    Your clarification of the situation is much appreciated.

    No doubt some contributors here will suggest that your summary is misleading. I am happy to accept precisely what you say. Hopefully the Internal Market Bill will now proceed, without further interference, to gaining Royal Consent.

    2021 will be a good year!

    • Nigl
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:34 am | Permalink

      No chance. It is the next stage where all the amendments etc kick in plus whatever the Lords throw at it. Of course the EU will be judging what is likely to happen and flexing their approach accordingly.

      They put these clauses in precisely to get the advantage that Boris is trying to over turn but of course he agreed to.

      Every time the quislings open their mouths the EU’s hope rise. I can’t help feeling some is driven by personal animus towards Boris.

      Once again they are out of touch with much of the country. Withdraw the Whip if that is what it takes. I couldn’t give a fig for their political careers.

    • ukretired123
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      +1

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      Pominoz, I too appreciate JR’s clarity and candour. It is a pity that the government (or rather, Brandon Lewis) mishandled the presentation of our protection clause in the Internal Markets bill. I suspect that some MPs are still getting to grips with how truly nasty the EU can be.

  7. Newmania
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:51 am | Permalink

    We approach the origin of the specious . Yes Parliament is sovereign and one of the things it can do is enter into agreements with other countries or super National bodies . That ( by an odd coincidence ) is exactly what it did.
    Of course it can renege on its commitments, just as any person may cheat steal or lie .
    John Redwood`s defence of this Governments astonishing behaviour , amounts to no more than this banal observation.
    The interesting thing is that its begins to emerge that the real reason for the whole shameful farce is that when Boris picked up Theresa May`s border into the Irish sea, he did not understand it . Probably didn’t read it
    Competence – about the only thing you can get a test for in this country- epic fail

    • graham1946
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      Can you please explain to us why you support other countries’ interference in our single market to the extent that we would have to make customs entries and pay duties on goods shipped from the UK to N.I.? Where would the duties be paid to and what about VAT ? – we would pay to ourselves presumably, so that just leaves the matter of paperwork for paperwork’s sake. That does seem to have the watermark of the EU about it. Is there any other independent country in the world that you can point to that has to put up with this? Does a mistake, if you are right about Boris (and I wouldn’t be surprised) mean that it has to be upheld in perpetuity?

    • Robert McDonald
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:04 am | Permalink

      OR, he realised that the tory ranks were too full of remainers and his majority as too small to fight the good fight … and he was wise enough to know that the fight could be engaged on another, more favourable day. Wisdom and competence is there for all to see, well maybe not for certain people.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      He did actually say there would be no checks between GB and NI. And so there won’t be. His idea was either a trade agreement would get rid of it or the government would. So it has turned out.

    • Andy
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      Indeed. It was excruciating watch Ed Miliband destroy Johnson in Parliament yesterday. Could you image the genuine Conservative greats – Churchill, Thatcher – ever sinking into the gutter Johnson inhabits.

      I am not a Conservative but I feel great sympathy for the many millions of genuine Conservatives whose party has gone rogue. Mrs Thatcher would be appalled.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

        Thank goodness for Ed Milliband. The red wall was wobbling and one sight of him rubbishing our country and Brexit has sorted that out. As a Conservative I’m tempted to start a crowd funding campaign to give Ed a platform.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

        Yeah right of course you do Andy.

        And Ed destroyed Boris?
        Hilariously wrong.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

        Strange that you cite Mrs Thatcher for support, Andy. She never wanted the EU to develop into a dirigiste empire in the first place, and later came to believe the UK would be better off out.

    • Kenneth Almquist
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      “Of course [Parliament] can renege on its commitments”

      Yes, that’s John Redwood’s entire argument. What he fails to do is to make the case that Parliament should renege on its commitments. And indeed he isn’t in a position to make that case because the Single Market Bill doesn’t actually direct the government to renege on an international agreement. The position of Redwood, and indeed of the majority of Parliament, it not that the UK should renege, but that Parliament doesn’t care whether the UK honors its treaty commitments. The bill authorizes the government to decide whether or not to renege without and further action by Parliament.

      Even if, as seems likely, the UK ends up adhering to the Withdrawal Agreement, the Single Market Bill further undermines the perception that the UK is a reliable negotiating partner that can be counted on to honor its agreements. And for what?

      (Since this is a UK political blog I should state that I am not a British citizen.)

      reply This is a deliberate misrepresentation of my position.

      • NickC
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:18 am | Permalink

        Kenneth, The IM clause in question would not be necessary were it not for the unreliability (actually, hostility and vindictiveness) of the EU.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:38 am | Permalink

      Not really – it was because he didn’t expect the EU to act in bad faith by threatening to withhold 3rd-party status for food standards as a negotiating ploy (thus breaking the WA themselves of course). A bit naive of him maybe.

    • IanT
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      I’m not Boris’s greatest fan (he wasn’t my first choice) but please don’t keep repeating this mantra that Boris is stupid, bone idle, too posh to care et al.

      Whatever else Boris is – he’s most certainly not stupid, quite the opposite. He’s not idle – all the evidence is that he works long hours and is well briefed – and he is also (normally) very much a liberal, at least in conservative terms.

      So please don’t join in this continuous chorus of “incompetence”.

      I suspect the opposite is true. By all means disagree with his decisions and actions but don’t join the continual (left-wing media led) drip-feed nonsense about competence. You don’t have to like him, you don’t have to agree with him – but he’s no idiot.

    • Polly
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      That simply is not true.

      The EU agreed to Clause 38, and Clause 38 is undoubtedly a ”Get Out Of Jail Free Card”.

      So there is no ”reneging” because the effect of it clearly allows the British to change their minds if they wish, the EU knew that when they agreed, and at no time did the EU say Clause 38 must never be invoked. If they had, there wouldn’t be any point agreeing to it!

      Polly

      • Ken
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

        There is no Clause 38 in the Withdrawal Agreement. It is in the UK Act. Which is the UK’s business and irrelevant to the EU. Uk law does not bind the EU

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:20 am | Permalink

          Ken, Clause 38 is not “irrelevant to the EU”. The EU knows the UK has a dualist constitution, and that EU law only applies within the UK via an Act of Parliament, even if you don’t.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      Newmania, If, by incompetence, you mean a failure to be aware of the vindictive, hostile, and power-hungry nature of the EU, then yes, Boris and many other politicians – and you – are incompetent. Actually I would characterise it as naivety, rather than incompetence, since I am by nature generous.

      The alternative to a minor clause to protect the existence of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the predatory EU is to abrogate the entire WA (perfectly legal in international law). That is my, and many others, preference. I suspect that the EU is aware of that too, which is why their bluster seems muted, and their indignation synthetic. The EU will get over it. But will you?

  8. Nigl
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:07 am | Permalink

    Good. The problem I have is that Boris trumpeted his deal as fantastic etc and you trooped into the lobby to vote for it. The commentators at the time highlighted the problem with Arlene Foster saying NI had been sold out and we now see the tautology to justify breaking our word

    Of course it is the other side’s fault. No it isn’t, it is yours for signing it and voting for it in the first place.

    Personally I think it was a duplicitous political judgement by Boris to sign ‘anything’ to get it out of the way and ‘kick the can down the road ‘sell it big, hoping to use it to ‘con’ the public that it was vastly superior to May s and hope to win an election, knowing he eventually would have sort it or lose NI.

    So far that is how it has played out.

    • Richard1
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:49 am | Permalink

      The surrender act made it ‘illegal’ for Boris not to sign a deal in some form by the expiry of the UK’s notice period to leave the EU.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:13 am | Permalink

      No. We had years of delay as Remainers did everything they could go prostrate this country before the EU Boris did whatever it took to ‘get it done’ accepting it would have to be put right later. So, here we are.

    • Andy
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      The people who told you the Withdrawal Agreement was a bad deal were dismissed as Remoaners. They were subjected to abuse and called traitors.

      And they also happened to be right.

      Ah, well. Enjoy your lorry parks and internal customs checks.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

        Why?
        Do you think our friends and colleagues in the EU will deliberately play up at the border and create a blockade?

        • IanT
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

          I still have friends in France, Germany and Italy and used to have ‘colleagues’ both in these Countries and elsewhere in Europe (before retirement).

          But I’ve never had friends (or colleagues) in the “EU” – the EU is not our friend, no more than they are our enemy.

          They are simply the people on the other side of the negotiating table determined to get the best deal they can that best serves their (not our) purposes. Fortunately, we now seem to have people on our side of the table that understand this fact and who are trying to protect our (UK’s) best interests – unlike the previous crew who frankly seemed quite confused in this area.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:50 am | Permalink

            Totally agree Ian.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

        Rubbish, Andy, the people who told us the Withdrawal Agreement was a bad deal were Leaves (politicians, lawyers, activists). Actually I read it, and could see how bad it was myself. As did many others. You wanted it to be imposed, and you repeatedly said so on here. Remain politicians and civil servants – who were responsible for the very existence of the WA – wanted it too, precisely because it kept the UK under the thumb of the EU (“a colony” in EU employees’ words).

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

        We won’t need lorry parks. Trade between us and the EU ceases on January 1st. Happy Nee Year.

        • IanT
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

          From ‘All’ to ‘Nothing’ overnight Mike? Really?

          That seems so unlikely as to be just a bit silly – like so many other claims in this area that don’t stand up to much actual thought.

          But I suppose people make these silly statements because they hope others are also silly enough to believe them.

    • rose
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      None of this is a problem when you remember the context. We had to get out, and the Government had to get a working majority. Now it can make amends and should be supported. Just imagine if it hadn’t got a majority. Don’t take it for granted. It is petty and dishonest for the opposition to keep on carping in this way. It was they who tied the PM’s hands so he couldn’t negotiate properly.

      • rose
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

        Couldn’t negotiate properly and couldn’t walk away either.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

        Rose, Exactly right. It is outrageous that we’ve had four years of immense political and legal turmoil simply because of Remain attempts to cheat us out of our Leave vote, yet Remains now try to blame Leaves for the mess. Remain impudence is astounding.

      • Ken
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        It was THIS government with THIS 80 seat majority which approved the deal Boris is now tearing up. The oven ready deal, you remember? It’s Boris’s

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          Ken, The WA was approved by the UK Parliament subject to the conditions within the WA Act 2020, and in no other way.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      Well he was left in an hole due to the appalling actions of Cameron, 9% May, Hammond and the Benn Act traitors. Boris did remarkably well to save us from Corbyn/SNP. Politically it was perhaps the only option he had to achieve this vital result to save us from Venezuela Mk. II.

      Listening to the appalling Ed Miliband yesterday makes be very grateful he does not have his hand on the levers of power. Boris is far from perfect but we certainly do not want anything like Ed Tombstone Miliband policies.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      Nig1, As you say, commenters here and elsewhere at the time pointed out the numerous flaws of the WA. In an ideal world the UK should not have signed it. I and many other commenters did not even want the Art50 route adopted, instead preferring to abrogate the EU treaties using our own sovereignty.

      However Cameron, then May, created an almighty Remain mess which landed on Boris’s plate. Politics being the art of the possible made the option of just walking away at that point immensely risky, not to say illegal given the Benn Act. Indeed Boris is at times foolishly ebullient, but the blame lies squarely at Mrs May’s door, not his.

      • Nigl
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

        Excellent summation. I agree with you totally

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

        Totally agree, the Referendum was a massive unnecessary risk. The BDI (previously the South Molton Declaration Launched 1999) sought exactly that, implied repeal of the ‘72 Act without even mentioning the EU.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

        NickC

        We are in a mess with the proposed legislation and we need to sort it out as we are in breach of international Law and the third reading can sort it out

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:57 am | Permalink

          The Withdrawal Agreement isnt a treaty.
          Altering a yet to be finalised Agreement isnt a breach of international law.

        • NickC
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:24 am | Permalink

          Bill B, The UK is not “in breach of international law”, and won’t be unless the EU empire breaches international law first. Do keep up.

          • bill brown
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 5:39 am | Permalink

            Nickc

            Please read what you write before you publish such nonsense

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:51 am | Permalink

            No law has been broken bill.

  9. Iain Gill
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    How comes covid testing in other countries is walk up, no appointment necessary, results the next day?

    Why are our tests running with multiple hidden VIP categories who all get preferential testing?

    Why is a conservative government endorsing Orwellian some are more equal than others state rationed society?

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

      Hands, face, space. Big brother is watching you.

  10. Sea Warrior
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    Two questions for you, Sir John – and it comes from having read Isabel Hardman’s ‘Why We Get the Wrong Politicians’. Would you agree with her assertion that bill committees in the Commons are dysfunctional? And was what needed to happen last night proof that MPs really aren’t scrutinising things as well as they should, as early as they should?

    Reply This Bill has a committee of the whole House so I do not think this applies here

  11. agricola
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    Thank you for the above clarification. I hope we now move forward to full sovereignty undetered by the EUs attempts to dilute it. The question of the FTA should be decided by mid October. I would be content either with or without it. It is down to the EU to decide whether they want it or not. My best guess is that they will dither and enter the blame game. WTO rules are fine, they have produced 60% of our trade which on balance is in credit. The EU will find themselves in competition with the rest of the World for our business, a situation the construct of the EU was designed to avoid. In parallel let us move forward to further FTAs such as that with Japan, which serve to further our grip on sovereignty apart from any boost to our economy.

    I would add that my experience with Japan indicated to me that well engineered technology led. Even the Accounts Directors of large companies had got there through a career process that left them fully experienced in the manufacturing process. A process we could learn from. The new relationship should be more than trade, we should aim at an integration of technology. This is where real power lies, not in being able to buy the cheapest baubles in the market. From many years experience, little would persuade me from buying other than a japanese car for instance.

  12. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:48 am | Permalink

    Take control?? Certainly not our borders. Just seen that another 168 have arrived – -plus those who don’t get seen – plus all the relatives. of those who claim “asylum”. I can hear them all laughing even up here. It isn’t even a VERY sick joke you are playing on us. This is clearly and blatantly deliberate. ALL get a free life here. Do NOTHING but everything on our taxes. That 168 will end up as over a thousand. Crime is going to rocket – and you in govt should all be done for aiding and abetting by your inaction to stop them – – and failure to get rid of them.
    I hope your party aren’t expecting my vote next time.

  13. Richard1
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    The reality is there was always going to come a crunch point in the EU negotiations. The reason it is so fraught now is that moment has been postponed for so long due to Mrs May’s predictably useless tactic of trying to bend over backwards to accommodate the EU. Obviously, as in any negotiation, the EUs demands just increased. Specifically they saw a chance to leverage the Irish border to cajole the U.K. into caving into patently ridiculous and unreasonable demands over fish, state aid and the nebulous concept of a ‘level playing field’. The internal market bill will take what the EU thinks is it’s trump card off the table. Paradoxically that will make an eventual deal easier as they will be obliged to negotiate in good faith, should they actually want a deal at all.

    • Richard1
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      The trade deal with Japan is interesting, perhaps you will post on it sometime as it’s received very little coverage in the media especially the BBC?

      Specifically, we have been assured for 5 years by continuity remain that the U.K. would not be able to agree Good trade deals of It’s own as 1) no one would sign a deal with the UK until the UK-EU position was clear 2) the U.K. would get worse terms out of the EU and 3) the UK doesn’t have anyone capable of negotiating trade deals as that’s been done by the EU for 40 years. The U.K.-Japan deal gives the lie to all of these. I assume it’s pretty much the same as we would have had had we still been in the EU?

  14. Alan Jutson
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    Well it got passed the first hurdle, but should never had been needed if the withdrawal agreement as it stands had not been agreed to in the first place.

    The honest thing to do was to walk away from any agreement with which you are not 100% happy, so called compromises included.

    Had we had a Prime Minister at the time who fully believed in Brexit, then we would have played hard ball with the original negotiations and either got a better deal than the present one or walked away..

    Perhaps with any further negotiations we will look at the small print first before signing anything.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:26 am | Permalink

      Just for clarification, I am referring to Mrs May and her disastrous so called negotiations, and for calling a general election which she also failed to win due to her appalling stance on Social Care and a number of other policy headlines.

  15. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-54153376
    English woman lives in a van.

    Hundreds of foreign illegals get put in hotels.

    Is the govt proud of itself?

  16. Frances Truscott
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    We would never be better off IN . The EU is leaving a few net contributing countries to support the rest. The rest has become a vast number of poor countries who used to survive by de valuing their own currency.
    It also exports its unemployed for the few countries to employ and care for.
    Its no good saying coffee pourers are hard workers. They still end up needing in work supports/benefits to live here.. and then they have children…
    We are already twice the population this land mass can support. The south east is short of water. Natural resources are finite.

  17. Bob Dixon
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    The WA that was signed and agreed was good enough to win a large majority for The Conservative Party in The H of C. Job done.
    The WA has faults and last nights vote will enable The UK to either get a better agreement
    with The EU or with leave without an agreement.
    Once out we can start to repair the damage caused by 40 years of EU rule.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      +1

  18. formula57
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    “The Remain politicians have used a variety of ploys and devices to try to delay, dilute or prevent our exit.” – and they are still doing so! The enemy within.

    With such Quislings on the loose, why has repeal of the Fixed-Term Parliaments Act not been prioritized?

  19. Dave Andrews
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    The Withdrawal Agreement is a bad deal, and like all bad deals it won’t last. Just look at the Treaty of Versailles, which was a catalyst for WW2.
    The Maastricht Treaty is also a bad deal. It limits national debt to 60% of GDP, but Italy has theirs at 137%. Member countries may have thought they had signed up to mutual agreements, but no, it’s a Treaty at the discretion of the EU whatever compliant states might think. Not so much pooled sovereignty, but surrender.

  20. Lennon
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    The Withdrawal Agreement is only UK law because of the Act. It is binding international law because the EU and UK agreed it – nothing to with UK law. Stop misleading your readers about the difference berween UK law and international law

    • Edward2
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

      If a democratic nation cannot alter laws then that nation isnt free.
      Laws are scrapped altered and amended all over the world every week.

    • Dennis
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      Lennon – but that doesn’t stop any country breaking Intl.law – there’s no blowback I can see any time and re the USA’s mighty military and economic power trumps everything.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      Lennon, The WA is a bilateral agreement, not “international law” in the same sense as as the Vienna and WTO treaties are. The only alternatives are: to accept EU control over the UK; or to amend the UK’s agreement to the WA; or to abrogate the WA entirely. The first confirms the UK as an EU colony, isn’t Leave and won’t happen. Personally I prefer the third option. Your practical choice is second or third, whether you like it or not. Which do you want?

  21. Everhopeful
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    I did however have some notion of actually being free within my free, self governing, independent country.

  22. Andy
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    As a Remain voter – and now a rejoiner – I would like to confirm that, for me, Brexit was never much about trade. As I have said all along although the economics of Brexit are lousy the economics are, for me personally at least, about the least worst thing about Brexit. Prices will mostly rise of course but my family are fortune so we will cope.

    But I’m afraid the sovereignty argument really holds no water. You mostly demonstrated in the period from 2017-2019 your contempt for a sovereign Parliament. Plus I have asked all of you repeatedly since 2016 what sovereignty you did not have as EU members that you will have outside of the EU. Collectively you have managed something or other about fish, something about foreigners (particularly the ones who don’t come from the EU) and VAT on tampons. I must find out why old men care so much about tampons.

    Anyway, where Mr Redwood is right is that Parliament is sovereign –
    and always has been – and because of that it can vote to change the Withdrawal Agreement Act, which it passed just nine months ago. However, the Withdrawal Agreement Act put into UK law the Withdrawal Agreement – a legally binding international treaty between the UK and EU. Changing the Act does not change the treaty – but it does put the UK in violation of the treaty. To change the treaty you need to agree with those changes with the EU. But at the moment Johnson and his henchmen are too busy shouting at Brussels.

    • Edward2
      Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

      That is a new one Andy.
      Having spent years on here ranting about trade you now say “for me brexit was never much about trade”

      PS
      If you want to learn about the concept of sovereignty then read the Supreme Court ruling in the Gina Miller case.
      Most illuminating.
      And the Withdrawal Agreement isnt a treaty.
      The clue is in the name.

    • NickC
      Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:29 am | Permalink

      Andy, It is true that you have repeatedly asked since 2016 what sovereignty we did not have as EU members that we will have outside of the EU.

      And you have repeatedly been told. But you take no notice. That is your problem.

  23. acorn
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Where did the titles of UK “single market” and “customs union” spring from? Are we now copying the EU version, which is a deal between 27 sovereign states. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are not sovereign states.

    Are you going to make them sovereign so they can individually have WTO status independent of Westminster? Like you suggested the EU should allow for its member states? “Why doesn’t the EU allow member states and member states companies have direct redress at the WTO for EU non compliance?” (JR diary sept 14th.)

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

      The 27 EU members are not Sovereign states. They are the equivalent of Scotland and Wales with their own ‘assemblies’ – and then just a hologram to stop the try the being obvious to all.

      • acorn
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 6:48 am | Permalink

        Try telling the French that! All 27 EU members have their own WTO membership and the EU as an international organisation has its own membership in addition.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:20 am | Permalink

        Lynn Atkinson

        Look up the definition of sovereing nation and thn get back you us.
        Yu really need to get back to reality and read some more

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

          Why not ask Barbados.
          They seem keen on it.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

      Acorn, You would prohibit common English language uses? Actually, the EU describes its own market as the “Internal Market” (TFEU Title 1, Art26), not the “single market”. And certainly the term “customs union” pre-dates the EU.

      • acorn
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

        The term internal market that came with the original EU Single European Act 1986, has been superseded since the arrival of the EU Single Market Acts 1 & 2 2010/11. The term still exists inside the DG-GROW organisation.

  24. Johnny H
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Remarkable that MP’s spend so much time arguing about sovereignty for parliament yet are so utterly unconcerned about personal sovereignty of their voters. One little Act that is a trifle causes hundreds of thousands of words to be written and enough hot air to float ten thousand balloons yet not a word about personal freedoms being removed and lives being ruined or ended by government actions.

  25. g wood
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    Undoubtedly sovereignty is indeed the key issue in the WA negotiations.
    Tory ‘remainer’ MPs and peers should recognise that BJ is not only right in re-visiting the Withdrawal Agreement but that he is compelled to. Why? Because of the timely insertion by Sir Bill Cash of Article 38 re-asserting British parliamentary sovereignty
    which overrides all the “strings” which the EU is attempting to attach to any future trade deal.
    To submit to these on the part of the British government would be to deny the binding nature of that clause and so would break the conditions of the WA to which the EU itself agreed !
    It is therefore plain that it is the EU which is attempting to break “international law” by denying that vital clause in these so called negotiations upon which everything else hinges.
    Thus the charge by Brexiteers that the EU, from the outset, is not acting in good faith is justified and in my view is sufficient grounds for simply walking away from this useless time wasting and expensive exercise.

  26. Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    So there are still at least 32 tory MP’s that support the EU cause — Why are they allowed to stir up trouble – They are a far worse virus than CV-19, and yet they are allowed to roam free and spread their vile contagion.

    In this whole debate – it is most encouraging to see the huge contributions made by our host – Well done Sir John Redwood.

    On another topic – when Is the government going to close down the London mayor — His incompetence is legendary, with TFL, bridges and black cabs for a start – But when he starts a process to remove historical statues to appease BLM then he really must go!

    Reply No, not 32. Some did not vote for other reasons. Maybe 18 abstained over the issue.

  27. Nigl
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    30 Tory abstentions. It gets tight if they decide to vote against in the coming days.

    Interesting how many ex ministers going no where but backwards in that group. Personal ambitions gone get revenge.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      You’d be ranting and raving if any had voted against a proposal to carpet-bomb the twenty-seven countries of the European Union, I surmise.

      Fanatics are never satisfied, which is why it is lunacy to try to placate them.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:04 am | Permalink

        What a ridiculous post MiC

      • NickC
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

        Hilarious, Martin. Straight from an objection to Remain Tory MPs reneging on their commitment of 9 months ago to get Brexit done, to “carpet-bombing” the twenty seven countries of the EU. No wonder you voted Remain!

  28. JoolsB
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    What is the point of talking about sovereignty when UK Governments of all colours deliberately continue to ignore the rotten deal England gets constitutionally (and financially). Until the anti-English Conservative party (there by the grace of England) and Labour party address both the English Question and the West Lothian Question, England unlink the other nations of the UK and western world will never be self governing.

  29. acorn
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    We are still perilously close to Hailsham’s “elective dictatorship”. Wrote Ros Taylor at LSE (September 30th, 2019). I suggest you go have a read of it. I paraphrase:

    Until recently, the powers of government within Parliament were largely controlled either by the opposition or by its own backbenchers. It is now largely in the hands of the government machine, so that the government controls Parliament and not Parliament the government. Until recently, debate and argument dominated the parliamentary scene. Now it is the whips and the party caucus.

    Furthermore, the Commons are no longer really ‘masters in their own house’.
    Not so long ago, influence was fairly evenly balanced between government and opposition, and between front benchers and backbenchers.

    Today, the centre of gravity has moved decisively towards the government side of the House, and on that side to, to the members of the government itself. The opposition is gradually being reduced to impotence, and the government majority, where power resides, is itself becoming a tool in the hands of the cabinet.

    The sovereignty of Parliament has increasingly become, in practice, the sovereignty of the Commons, and the sovereignty of the Commons has increasingly become the sovereignty of the government, which, in addition to its influence in Parliament, controls the party whips, the party machine, and the civil service.

    • Edward2
      Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

      Until the next election.

      PS
      Did your views in this post also hold when Blair and Brown were in power?

    • NickC
      Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:36 am | Permalink

      Acorn, Ludicrous . It was only 10 months ago that the Remain HoC controlled the government and made law of its own choosing.

  30. Nigl
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    Off topic. Am I going to snitch on anyone as demanded by this out of touch government. Most certainly not. A contemptible suggestion. Would I consider civil disobedience, most certainly, yes.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

      Nig1, I entirely agree.

  31. Mike Durrans
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Well said Sir! What puzzles me is the total ignorance of many of the MP’s , they seem to act on gossip, not facts. Their main source of information is from the eu supporting BBC.

  32. bill brown
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    Sir JR

    “Parliament is free to amend it as it sees fit”
    “Some world law enforced by a world Court”

    The basis of international law has never been based on some world court nor has been based on nations changing legislation after 4 months and not adhering to international agreements.

    the basis of international law has always been based on the parties respcting alerady agreed treaties and followed them by implementng them in national legislation.

    therefore , using words like world court is totally contraditory to the principles of internaitonal law,(actually it is nonsesnse) which we have broken and unless it is changed in the third reading with detrimental to future agreements with the UK. (a already outlined by Pelosi)

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

      Dear Bull, who is Pelosi?

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:17 am | Permalink

        Lynn Atkinson

        Read up on contemporary US history

    • Edward2
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

      Which can be amended altered and scrapped.
      It is what normal independent democratic nations can do.

      This must come as a shock to you bill after being told what to do by the EU for 47 years.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:18 am | Permalink

        Edward 2

        you can do better than this it is rather tame

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

          Sorry bill
          Obvioysly I will now try to improve.
          And be less tame.
          Thanks

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      Bill B, So why has the EU failed to respect its own TEU Art50/3 (“The Treaties shall cease to apply to [the UK] from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement . . .” – when the UK is still subject to EU law within our own country)? Or TFEU Art3 (“the conservation of marine biological resources under the [CFP]” – a long standing failure)? Or TEU Art10/1 (“The functioning of the [EU] shall be founded on representative democracy” – when the EU Commission which originates EU law is not democratic)? Etc, etc. As for our IM bill it’s not law – so we’ve broken nothing yet – and the clause you object to won’t be actioned unless the EU breaks international law first.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:19 am | Permalink

        Nick C

        this is your interpretation of the legislation before Parliament, other people ahve other interpretations and it does break international law

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

          No law has been broken.

  33. Nigl
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    We now read in the DT that the ERG, I guess you were part of that are now focussing on much else wrong with the WDA. To date I cannot recall you mentioning that.

    I think we should be told.

    Boris’ hubris looks less and less justified and more and more politically a big weight on his shoulders.

  34. Original Richard
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Mr. Miliband asserts that the PM wants to amend the WA which he himself signed.

    If I remember correctly we had a rogue Parliament and a rogue Speaker who were openly doing their utmost to undermine the democratic decision of the UK voters to leave the EU and passed a law that required that the UK could not exit the EU without a WA.

    As a result the PM was forced to sign a sub optimal WA in order to enable the UK to finally leave the EU.

    Perhaps he should have added “VC” to his signature on this document as he was unable to enact the WA he would have liked with this law designed by Parliament’s EU supporters to give a big negotiating advantage to the EU?

    So no wonder the PM wishes to change this agreement.

    The WA is not an international law but an agreement between the UK and the EU and as Parliament is sovereign it is entitled to change this agreement if it so wishes.

  35. BW
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    It was the EU that started all this treating David Cameron and Britain with contempt. They have treated us with contempt during negotiations with threat after threat. The WA is only worth a jot if both sides work towards a FTA and respect Sovereignty which the EU have not. Indeed they have even sort to control the U.K. in the event of a no deal through the ECJ, and customs etc. That is not acting within the spirit of the WA. It is the EU that has prompted the U.K. to protect itself from that overbearing undemocratic sanctimonious organisation who continue their threats to our financial markets. I sincerely hope that Boris has led the way in dealing with massively over the top layer of government, and that other nations will soon follow suit. Stop slamming the U.K. for defending itself from tyranny. I am over the moon the government prevailed.

  36. A.Sedgwick
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    The very poor handling of the virus with endless anomalies, double standards, loopholes and contradictions with the batallion of academics and professors, who try to blind people with spurious science, is undermining the sovereignty issue and giving Remainers the opportunity to conflate the two, as shown in the Commons yesterday.

    The figures on the virus that matter are true Covid deaths, collateral i.e. excess deaths, hospital admissions. More tests = more cases.

    Remainers are embedded in the Conservative and Unionist? Party and the Establishment is making another wrecking stand. They are naive to the reality that the EU is a sham democracy.

    Unfortunately this Government is displaying similar tendencies and my guess is Nigel Farage regrets withdrawing half his candidates.

  37. kenneth
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    Good post with which I agree.

    This “international law” concept has always baffled me (e.g. the BBC often uses it). They are just agreements between countries with a good analogy being a “contract”.

    Sometimes a contract become quaint, unenforceable or has been written in an ambiguous way.

    For this and a host of other reasons, sometimes one party is within their rights to amend or override parts of a contract. All we are doing is ensuring the original intention of the agreement is not undermined.

    This is OUR law.

    • bill brown
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

      Kenneth,

      this is international law not just our law

      • Edward2
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

        Which gets altered amended and scrapped as democratic independent nations decide that is what they want to do.

      • NickC
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        Bill B, The UK accepts international law via UK Parliamentary law, eg: the ECA (1972). Didn’t you know?

        • bill brown
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

          Nick C

          all democracies do so thank you for a great contribution

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:54 am | Permalink

            But you get very cross when the UK does it.

  38. SM
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    Oh for crying out loud – it’s not that long till Christmas, I suggest the Government tie up N Ireland with a big coloured ribbon and gift it back to the Irish Republic, it’s far more trouble than it’s worth.

    • Fred H
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      I’m afraid that is often an easy conclusion to arrive at.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

      The DUP 10 SAVED the U.K.! Without them Mays Treachery would be entrenched. We owe them everything! I will NEVER cede an inch of NI. To be honest I’m in two minds about the ‘free state’. Maybe Ireland should be united under the good old Union Flag!

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:16 am | Permalink

        Lynn Atkinson

        Get back to reality again

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      Yes, thanks to the DUP we had Tory government.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

      SM, Oh for crying out loud – the island of Ireland has never been politically unified except consequent on the Norman conquest in the C12th. I’m quite sure the English were no more happy to be conquered by the Normans than the Irish were.

  39. herebefore
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    Yes John but who are we going to make trade deals with now? who will trust us to keep our word? It’s understandable disagreements over parts of treaties can emerge from time to time but what is happening now is a unilateral declaration to renege and is no different than Ian Smiths UDI in Rhodesia years ago or China’s change of security laws in HK recently – there are plenty of other examples too of rogue state activity- like for instance Russia and Crimea- As I say there are ways to sort differences between civilised parties but this is not the way- there will be consequences.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

      After UDI Rhodesia became ‘the breadbasket of Africa’.

      • bill brown
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:16 am | Permalink

        Lynn Atkinson,

        If, you knwe your history , you would know it was breadbasket even before UDI

        • Edward2
          Posted September 17, 2020 at 7:57 am | Permalink

          Completely wrong.
          Mugabe and his Marxist thugs wrecked the agriculture sector in Zimbabwe.
          They went from food exporters to their own people starving.

      • margaret howard
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

        Edward2

        ” Clause 184 of the Withdrawal Agreement is about negotiating in good faith”

        You might like to remind Boris of this since he is busy moving the goal posts.

        • Edward2
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

          The EU have introduced 3 deliberate blocs into the negotiations.
          They don’t want a desl.
          They never did.

    • NickC
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

      Herebefore, And I’m quite sure such differences could have been sorted out amicably if the EU had behaved in a civilised manner instead of making threats to break up the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

      • jackie
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        We have left so no need for EU to make threats- it’s clear now that the transitional talks will fail, and that’s all. The EU is already making full preparations for going to WTO rules on 31st Jan- so should we.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

      Anyone else will see the EU are determined to punish us for leaving. Everyone else will know we’ll stand by any fair and reasonable trade deal.

      Ban global trade. We’d all be a lot better off.

      • NickC
        Posted September 16, 2020 at 11:41 am | Permalink

        Hmmm, I’m not so sure about banning global trade. This country was exporting wool, tin, and dogs, before the Romans came.

  40. Anthony Sutcliffe
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    This appears to be an argument saying that we have the capability to pass sections 42, 43 and 45 of the IM Bill. Indeed we do. Surely the question is whether we should? And whether there is a moral standard to keeping our word that applies here?

    I accept that there are reasons to think the EU has negotiated in bad faith. These clauses are the equivalent of coming to the negotiating table and slapping a revolver on it. That puts us in the position of negotiating in bad faith and being really, really obvious about it.

    I say that is not an appropriate way to behave if you want the respect of other countries around the world. I am second to no one in believing the UK should always reserve the right to operate in its own territory as it sees fit. But to assert that right at this point and in this way will incur anger and distrust. Perhaps that is unfair but that is already the result. Do we wish to incur more?

    Perhaps a role reversal is helpful to make my point. Imagine the roles were reversed. The UK and EU had negotiated a treaty and a few months later the EU passed internally laws that enabled it simply to ignore the processes agreed in the treaty. How would we feel? Would we suddenly be persuaded that the processes agreed had been too one sided or would we be outraged?

    The answer is obvious. If you go through with this bill you will incur this outrage from the EU and distrust from elsewhere.

    These powers are necessary for the government only if the EU acts in very bad faith. Let them do so and then we will respond. We have now shown we can. We have shown that if they are unreasonable they will simply be ignored. Perhaps that will be enough for them to change course. And if not, pass these clauses from the moral high ground.

  41. ukretired123
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:42 am | Permalink

    On Friday 17th September it will be the anniversary of Arnhem whereby 10,000 went mostly to die sadly defending the freedom of many nations sovereignty in 1944. They made the ultimate sacrifice including Polish and Canadian and many other nations fighters. Sovereignty is not negotiable.
    It is easy to give it away and difficult to win back.
    Britain paid a heavy price but people suffered on both sides and folks forget of don’t even know as it is not taught by default.

  42. George Brooks.
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    What goes around comes around. A perfect ‘own goal’ by the Remainers.

    The PM is absolutely right to bring the deadline forward to October 15 to concentrated the minds of Barnier et al.

    Regaining our sovereignty is the big prize and those 5 past PMs couldn’t get that right either

    • James Neill
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

      Don’t know what you mean George..15th October I believe is the EU council meeting with heads of the various 27 EU countries. Uk will not be there as it is not part of the Council?

  43. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    Sir John

    100% with you on this.

    Yes sovereignty matters more. We the people leant our Sovereignty to our Parliament, it is clear those MP’s that think differently should resign and let someone with more dignity, honesty and less shame take their place.

  44. Edmund Hirst
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Yes we voted to live in a free country. It hasn’t turned out that way though, quite the opposite.

  45. 'None of the above'.
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Sir John,
    Thank you for putting things so straightforwardly. I have read this morning an article on the Global Vision UK website which I found extremely helpful and, in it’s way, rather shocking.
    I will not ask you to comment directly on it but I wonder if some of your readers would find it of interest.
    I think that the Government is right to pursue negotiation with the EU for as long as possible, give the EU every chance to recognise that we are an independent sovereign state and to negotiate (all be it belatedly) in good faith.
    If the EU fails to take up this opportunity, the UK Government can hold its head up high while it informs the EU that it repudiates the Withdrawal Agreement in accordance with the Vienna Convention and legislates to that end.
    On a personal note, I have now reached the point where I no longer believe that the EU Commission can be trusted to play with a straight bat whatever agreement exists between us.

  46. ian
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    I am not the one you have to convince, it the pro Europeans in your party this bill will go down in flames next week.
    BJ should stick to what under his control which is no deal this bill and others may only pass once the UK has left the EU in full, the pro-European might come round but that’s only a might, what should be happening is stockpiling food and other things, but I see nothing happening on that front.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      You want odds?

  47. DaviJ
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    “There are those who still seem to think it would be bad faith for the UK…”

    Yet those very people condone the acting in bad faith of the Eurocrats who never intended negotiations to be anything more than keeping the UK in a stranglehold to their benefit alone.

    • margaret howard
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      David

      “…keeping the UK in a stranglehold to their benefit alone.”

      Can you give us examples to prove your point? And why should ‘THEY’ (whoever they are) single us out for such a treatment?

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

        Margaret the EU Oligarchy needs the UK’s wealth. ‘They’ don’t single us out, they have already bankrupted the entire Mediterranean. But we have more and so are a bigger prize. Also there is the little issue of revenge, twice last century we thwarted them, and now the third time too.
        This is the third time in a century that Germany has brought Europe to its knees.
        Do you applaud that Margaret?

        • bill brown
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 7:14 am | Permalink

          Lynn Atkinson,

          Your farcical illustration of your German focus is turning into a circus, which has abslutely nothing to do with Europe’s reality. You are forgetting that parts of the Mediterranaan is rich and a significant amoutn of nations in the EU are also richer then we are .

          Get back to reality and stop this foreign hatred

        • margaret howard
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

          Lynn

          “EU oligarchy needs our wealth?”

          When we joined we were known as ‘the sick man of Europe’ and the EU had to invest huge sums in our regions to bring us up to scratch.

          Ironically it was Germany which supported our membership application after De Gaulle’s repeated ‘Nons’

          As for your DMail style account of German history and its influence on world affairs you might do well to remember that much of the globe is still recovering from our war mongering in pursuit of empire during the last 3 centuries and the endless colonial wars we were involved in.

          “During its history, the United Kingdom’s forces (or forces with a British mandate) have invaded, had some control over or fought conflicts in 171 of the world’s 193 countries that are currently UN member states, or nine out of ten of all countries”

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wars_involving_the_United_Kingdom#cite_note-1EU

          • Edward2
            Posted September 17, 2020 at 8:00 am | Permalink

            They didn’t invest huge sums.
            It was our own recycled money.
            47 years membership and a net payer into the EU for 46 of those years.

            Your anti British attitude is ridiculous.
            I hope you dont have the ability to poison impressionable young minds with your biased views.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:52 pm | Permalink

        I can Margaret
        Clause 184 of the Withdrawal Agreement is about negotiating in good faith.
        I fairly and reasonably in order to get the required outcome.
        That original outcome was a free trade deal mutually beneficial to both sides.
        Since then the EU has introduced several new demands.
        That the EU has the final say on State aid to UK companies.
        And no change on fishing rules
        And that the UK continues to follow into the future all EU laws rules regulations and dir6concerned with trade.

        • margaret howard
          Posted September 16, 2020 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

          Edward2

          ” Clause 184 of the Withdrawal Agreement is about negotiating in good faith”

          You might like to remind Boris of this since he is busy moving the goal posts.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 16, 2020 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

            Boris has just reacted to their intransigence.

      • NickC
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

        Margaret H, One example is the Common Fisheries Policy to which we are still subjected by the EU. Another is the CAP towards which we still pay £bn to benefit our agricultural competitors. Do keep up.

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted September 15, 2020 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

        Simple. The EU will not give us a trade deal unless we agree to allow them continued fishing in our waters, full adherence to their environmental and employment regulations (judged by the ECJ) and their view of human rights (ditto).

        The European Commission negotiated the Withdrawal Agreement in bad faith because they never intended to give us a Trade Agreement – indeed, they are willing to cut off their noses to spite our faces.

        The European Commission is a bully. There is only one way to treat a bully; that is to kick him in the crotch and, if he persists, to kick him harder. Our full response should be threefold:
        (1) Repeal the entire Withdrawal Agreement
        (2) Withdraw recognition of the European Commission on 1st January
        (3) Inform the EC that if delays are caused to British exporters after 1st January, the EU will receive no further payments from us

    • hopalong
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

      There is no ‘acting in bad faith’ Brexit is completed the WA had been signed and we ard out we are free. What we’re at now is talks about the future that’s if we want a future and if we agree a future- so bad faith shouldn’t arise until agreement on the future is reached. But If no agreement is reached then each side just walks just away and that’s it- there was no compulsion anywhere on anyone that transition talks had to be completed that FTA had to be concluded this was all in the PD document as aspirationalso I don’t know why people are talking about acting in bad faith?

  48. Amanda
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Parliament has “the right to make or unmake any law whatsoever; and further, no person or body is recognised by the law as having a right to override or set aside the legislation of Parliament”

    So, can this now be used to challenge Matt Hancock’s diktats that have now gone beyond the requirements of the Public Health Act 1984 !! If so, I wish a group of MPs/assorted others would do so.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 15, 2020 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

      Parliament authorised Hancock, else he would not have the power.

  49. Mark
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    I am rather alarmed by Mr Speaker’s ideas about taking control reported in the Daily Express.

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/1334816/climate-change-rules-lindsay-hoyle-G7

    The idea that the present lickdowns should morph into “climate lockdowns” in order to enforce unpopular policy is it appears no longer a dystopia conspiracy theory, but an openly acknowledged plan among some politicians.

  50. APL
    Posted September 15, 2020 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    JR: “We voted for Brexit to take back control. Brexit voters wish to live in a free self governing independent country. ”

    We didn’t vote for the nationalisation of the whole economy.
    We didn’t vote for the abolition of ‘innocent until proven guilty’.
    We didn’t vote for the government to put the whole population under house arrest.

  51. Lucy Hawkins
    Posted September 16, 2020 at 2:25 am | Permalink

    I don’t think it is just the EU who would like to use the WA to the detriment of the UK, but there is an enemy within who have previously useed our courts to frustrate the will of the people and might seek to do so again.

  52. jackie
    Posted September 16, 2020 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    We have left so no need for EU to make threats- it’s clear now that the transitional talks will fail, and that’s all. The EU is already making full preparations for going to WTO rules on 31st Jan- so should we.

  53. Posted September 16, 2020 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    Good work again yesterday sir John, things starting to look up atlast for the majority.
    Our thanks must be given to Ed and the ghastly washed up old PMs
    When they start jumping you know we are going the right way !

  54. ChrisS
    Posted September 16, 2020 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    A fine assessment of the situation.

    The so-called “negotiations” have been bedevilled by the refusal of the EU to accept that the United Kingdom is going to return to being a Sovereign Nation no longer under the influence and control of Brussels.

    When, or if, they come round to accepting this, we might make some progress.

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    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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