The Great Repeal Bill – the Bill all MPs have to support

I am happy with the principles behind the proposed legislation. Whilst we are leaving under the Treaty provisions, the actual legal abolition of EU power in the UK requires the repeal of the Act of Parliament which gave the EEC, then the EU, the powers in the first place.

The Bill is misdescribed as the Great Repeal Bill. It is really the Great Continuity Bill. Its prime purpose is to transfer all current directly acting EU laws and past court decisions into UK law. It is therefore reassuring to all those who voted Remain because they liked current EU laws and protections, as this legislation will preserve them and make them UK requirements on our departure.

Labour and the Lib Dems were keen to stress their wish to see areas like employment law protected. This Bill does just that. They will therefore need to vote for the Bill to carry out their clearly expressed wish that every EU employment protection survives Brexit. This should be an unusual Bill where the whole House wants to support it. There will of course be amendments which will cause debate and division, about how much detail has to be put into the Act itself. Anyone who does not vote for this Bill is supporting no continuity in our laws and uncertainties over what the law is in many fields.

Some are now saying what is the point of leaving the EU if we keep all the EU laws. The point is once they are UK laws, we in the UK can decide to keep them, improve them or remove them. The UK government has reassured the Opposition that it has no wish or intention to repeal or dilute any of the employment protections that stem from EU law all the time it is in office. The government does, however, wish to introduce new border controls and benefit and migration policies, which is only possible once we have taken back control and transferred the EU border and benefits law into UK law. This will of course need UK primary legislation which will go through a full parliamentary process to change what we currently have. I also trust the government will want to put through a new fishing policy which is kinder to both our fish and our fishermen. That too will need a full Parliamentary process with new legislation.

I have commented before on the so called Henry VIII powers. Most modern Acts of Parliament have needed Statutory Instruments to implement them and handle the details. The scope of this is debated by Parliament when the Act is passed. Each Statutory Instrument itself is put to Parliament, and Parliament can debate and vote on them if it wishes.

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138 Comments

  1. Lifelogic
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    Of course it is misdescribed as are many bills. This is usually done intentionally to mislead. Rarely do they call bills “the Massive Multiple Tax Increasing, Pension Grabbing and Landlord Mugging Bill” for example but that is what they pass. The Climate Change act was actually the “Double the Price of Energy, Make It Far Less on Reliable or on Demand, Export and Kill Countless Jobs and Do Nothing about the Climate at all. While Funnelling Lots of Tax Payers Money to Wealthy Land Owners and the Crown.”

    If non of these EU laws were carried forwards we would be far better off than we are by making them part of UK law. At the very least they should only come into British Law for a limited time only say 12 months after which they are to be reformed or lapse.

    Laws in general beyond the basic law and order, contract and property rights rarely help economies – quite the reverse in general. These laws once incorporated will be unlikely to get reformed they will be “built on” as the foolish, socialist May indicated she would do with employment “rights”.

    The higher, job destroying, minimum wage level comes in today, making it illegal for people to sell their time for less than x per hour – even if they want to. So many are prevented from working at or developing their work skills by law.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic, you have brightened up my evening. I can’t stop laughing as what you say is so true especially about the Climate change crap.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

        I try my best.

        Household savings ratio falls to record low, says ONS today I notice.

        Well what did the government expect? The tax and benefit system (and inheritance tax in particular), plus the absurdly low interest the bank pays tells people not to save, so they don’t. They have removed the moral hazard of being feckless so they get more fecklessness. Quelle surprise!

        If you save they just take 40% of you on death (plus the new probate tax). In the old people home you even end up paying more to subsidise the people who saved nothing and so the state is paying for (or rather you are). So go on a cruise and spend it on high living then get the state to pay for your old age.

  2. Bernard from Bucks.
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:43 am | Permalink

    “…they liked current EU laws and protections, as this legislation will preserve them”,
    To be honest I don’t much like the sound of this.
    I voted ‘leave’ to rid this country and myself of most of these EU laws.
    Is this the start of a ‘stitch up’?

    • Mark B
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:18 am | Permalink

      Good morning, Bernard and to everyone else.

      many of the laws that the Eu hand down to us come from others sources and bodies, most of them international. The EU negotiates for all 28 Countries and then puts its stamp on what has been agreed and then, intern, we put our stamp on it and it becomes UK Law.

      Outside the EU and sitting on these international bodies in our own right we will be able to determine the international rules and, again intern, those that the other 27 Countries of the EU have to adopt.

      It is not just our freedom that we are gaining here, it is our voice and REAL POLITICAL INFLUENCE !

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:27 am | Permalink

        And we don’t have to be in the EEA to be able to do that. It is pointed out that being outside the EU and with its own representation on those bodies Norway may actually have more influence on the rules they agree than it would have if it was in the EU and therefore represented by the EU, and that may well be true, but that advantage is nothing to do with Norway being in the EEA.

        • Mark B
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:35 am | Permalink

          Norway gets a second bite when the legislation goes through the Comotology (sp) Phase. And they have the power to veto proposals they do not like.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

            Like most other third countries Norway has a diplomatic mission to the EU, and one of its functions is (basically) to lobby the EU institutions in Norway’s interests:

            https://www.regjeringen.no/en/topics/european-policy/mission-of-norway-to-the-eu/about_mission/id685974/

            But it is has no vote on EU laws, let alone a veto, and its legal power to refuse to implement an EU law which is relevant to the EEA is highly questionable, to say the least.

            Today the European Council has said that it:

            http://g8fip1kplyr33r3krz5b97d1.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/FullText.pdf

            “… welcomes the recognition by the British Government that the four freedoms of the Single Market are indivisible … ”

            and as the EEA is based on all four of those freedoms while the UK government has also correctly said that as far as the UK is concerned there must be an end to one of them, freedom of movement of persons, it’s difficult to see how the EU could go along with the UK staying in the EEA even if that is what the UK government wanted.

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:28 am | Permalink

        Before the EU issues these laws they embellish them and then the UK Parliament embellishes them again.
        We then finish up at a competitive disadvantage.
        An example is I work on 2 almost identical landfill gas generation facilities.
        One in UK and one in the US.
        UK pays £107 per MW USA pays $38 per MW.
        Now Donald is about to reduce that. This highlights the stupidity of the CCA and EU directives

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:49 am | Permalink

          Indeed and a huge self inflicted competitive disadvantage it is.

          But Socialist May want to import all the workers “rights” and build on them, Hammond want to mug the self employed and make them as inflexible as the employed. They both still seems to think the dire NHS is just dandy as it is and even like expensive, unreliable greencrap energy!

        • getahead
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

          And following on from Dennis Cooper’s comment, EEA membership also costs around two thirds the cost of EU membership.
          We definitely don’t want to be giving away any more money to this parasitic construction.

      • Hope
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:22 am | Permalink

        It is very strange that MPS DO NOT WANT THE SOLE ABILITY TO MAKE THE LAWS FOR THE UK. LABOUR KEEP SAYING ALL EMPLOYMENT RIGHTS MUST BE TRANSFERRED. WHY ARE THEY NOT HAPPY TO MAKE BETTER EMPLOYMENT IF ELECTED? BLAIRE HAD YEARS TO CHANGE MANY EMPLOYMENT LAWS AND CHOSE NOT TO. IS THERE SOMETHING I AM MISSING? NATIONALISTS SHOULD BE CHAMPING AT THE BIT.

      • Mr Rob Drummond
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        Good Point!

      • Phil M
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:54 am | Permalink
        • Phil M
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:55 am | Permalink

          Sorry for fumbling the link there – admin maybe can you fix?

      • Mitchel
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:00 am | Permalink

        Yes but that depends on whether our representatives reflect the will of the people or are in effect fellow travellers.Given the orientation of the Establishment the omens are not particularly promising.It’s likely that every effort will be made for us an independent nation state to move in lockstep with the rest of the “West”.

      • bigneil
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:25 am | Permalink

        I would disagree with one point. The EU negotiates for Germany, That is all it is concerned about.

        • Mactheknife
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:20 am | Permalink

          Not really….you forget the French farmers and CAP. They like their cash from the EU and CAP is always front and centre.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:29 am | Permalink

      It will be start of the authorities in the UK being able to decide whether or not to keep them, rather than being under an international obligation to accept them.

      • forthurst
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:52 am | Permalink

        As to the desirability or otherwise of retention, that could largely be determined by the originating authority. Were it to be a specialist international body concerned with technical standards, then we would almost certainly want to keep it; on the other hand if it originated from the UN such as Agenda 21/ savetheplanet, then it must be repealed, as the UN is a wholly illegitimate body, imposed on the world by the allies of the victorious Bolsheviks after WWII, subsequently supplemented by a large number of backward new dominions blown in by the winds of change and turned into a geo-political weapon to destroy Western Civilisation economically and demographically.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

          You mean the British and American allies of the Bolsheviks!

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:38 am | Permalink

      Most laws do far more harm than good. Beyond the basic law and order, contract and property rights they rarely help economies at all – quite the reverse they generate lots of essentially parasitic jobs for lawyers, bureaucrats and politicians while putting obstacles and costs in the way of trade, employment & businesses.

      A 12 month expiry should be put into the Great Reform Bill (indeed perhaps into all bills with new laws) this so that they fall away if not revisited in that period. That would be an excellent and real Reform.

    • Mr Rob Drummond
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      For goodness sake – please relax. it only happened yesterday and the way John described it is entirely logical.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      Which EU laws in particular do you want repealed?

      Had to click 8 images on the Captcha. Still, it’s a hobby I guess.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:40 am | Permalink

        All in good time. I would suggest that once we have left the EU and reclaimed the power to amend or repeal the laws the government should ask the whole population precisely that question in a public consultation. And it could repeat that exercise each year until there were no further responses.

        8 is pretty good but nowhere near the claimed record.

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:54 am | Permalink

      I fail to see how we are going to get a good Brexit deal with EU negotiators arrayed in front of us and British EU supporters undermining us from behind, every single step of the way.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

        Correct, they are working against our national interests and maybe it’s time that they were called out.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

      I voted remain, but it was touch and go. My main reason for wanting to vote Leave was immigration (but then decided we’d be better off, economically, as well as general peace and security, inside the EU). It looks like the immigration issue is being withdrawn as a main Brexit focus (I might be wrong, but that’s my impression).

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:01 am | Permalink

    It is reported today that:- “Simon Stevens has significantly relaxed the requirement on NHS hospitals to treat, within 18 weeks, 92% of all patients in England who are waiting for a hip or knee replacement, cataract removal, hernia repair or other non-urgent operation.”

    Well they were not meeting this anyway. It must do wonders for UK productivity with all these people unable to work or working in pain are without being able to see. Perhaps falling over and needing even more urgent emergency treatments. Still they have your money already so you will probably not be able to afford to get it done elsewhere so tough.

    When on earth are we going to get a sensible government that will actually address the appalling disaster that is the free at the point of rationing and non treatment NHS?

    • bigneil
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:30 am | Permalink

      Got to wait longer? All those coming here for free treatment will be very upset at having to wait after paying nothing towards the NHS. Next thing there will be a legal aid lawyer getting the upset freeloader a payout for their distressing wait. Just to be sure, yes I am being sarcastic, but I can see it happening as we already “punish” illegal immigrants by putting them in hotels.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

        Making people wait longer saves no money at all as they just get the treatment a bit later (unless that is they die first or go privately and the vast majority simply cannot).

        Indeed complications, accidents and the fact they perhaps cannot work would actually cost money. What is needed is a system to encourage more to go privately.

        So where is the logic of this NHS move Theresa & Hammond? Is it cowardice or just the usual stupidity?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      How on earth does extending the waiting time for NHS operations save any money any more than having six hour queues at A&E does? The operations are still needed and you risk further complications, falls etc in the interim. Also you prevent people from working so they pay less tax and damage the economy too. It certainly will not help the government finances. Shooting itself in the foot yet again through incompetence.

      May and Hammond need a completely different approach on the NHS (indeed on nearly everything else too). Start charging, give tax relief and partial vouchers to people who go privately, scrap the 12% IPT tax on medical insurance develop some real competition in the market.

      Fire most of the dire NHS management and make the NHS compete for funds with other providers of these needed operations. Perhaps fly some patients to India or similar for their operations.

  4. fedupsoutherner
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    There are many EU laws affecting our fishing rights, agriculture and in particular laws to do with energy and the environment that need changing asap. Get rid of expensive renewables and replace them with something cheaper and efficient and give our fishermen back their jobs! Many of the employment rights were put in place by the UK in the first place.

    • Phil M
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:59 am | Permalink

      I am not sure how the Great Repeal Bill affects policy areas like the CFP and CAP. I would have thought we would withdraw from these automatically – I can’t see how a non-EU member can be in them, even if it technically has the legal instruments to do so. Maybe John can tell us?

  5. fedupsoutherner
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    One thing we can be sure of is that the SNP will cause problems yet again.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:42 am | Permalink

      Of course they will, as soon as Bliar devolved power this inevitable course was set. They will demand more and more powers and English money and they will use these powers to demand yet more and more. This while blaming all the SNP failures on the English.

      That is how the world of the SNP works.

      • a-tracy
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:55 am | Permalink

        When Blair and Brown’s Labour party was in power it was a Scottish led power and thus England had tuition fees when Scotland didn’t, we were told by Clegg and Osborne when they put said fees up it was to spend the extra money on English schools with a poor pupil premium, Scotland chose not to do this. Has this been carried out or not? Have the brightest and best graduates paying their 9% graduate tax on their student loans and the funds raised from this in England covered the cost of the pupil premium in Schools in England.

        Do Scottish schools still get the pupil premium anyway? Otherwise our English MPs have sold us down the river.

    • Beecee
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      It is time to take away the hand that feeds them; to stop the Barnett Formula subsidy!

      I for one am tired of their bitching, complaining, demanding more and more, just continuous grief. And never a ‘thank you’!

      Give them a early taste of what independence will be like when the money tree loses its fruit!

      Spend my tax instead on the English poor, elderly, sick and infirm!

      • a-tracy
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:52 am | Permalink

        There’s a reason that Barnet formula exists and it must be to do with the oil, they’ve had their extra subsidies up there for years even when their damned Tories are in charge and it’s time now the RUK are told what’s going on.

    • JoolsB
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:52 am | Permalink

      It will be a win win for the SNP but they’ll still complain. May has promised significant extra powers for the devolved Nations (of course the UK Parliament with it’s MPs from across the UK will still control England). Scotland will get the best of both worlds – devo max but without having to worry about where the money comes from to fund their socialist utopia. The UK Government will very generously throw English taxpayers money at them, (more than they thow at the English) and they’ll still gripe.

      Meanwhile England is still waiting to be given just some of the powers (and money) that the anti-English Conservative Government feels is the right of the devolved nations – just not England.

    • Mitchel
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:05 am | Permalink

      Not just the SNP,all the Remain berserkers.We will have to ensure the shield wall remains high!

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:59 am | Permalink

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1998/46/section/28

      “7) This section does not affect the power of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to make laws for Scotland.

      (8) But it is recognised that the Parliament of the United Kingdom will not normally legislate with regard to devolved matters without the consent of the Scottish Parliament.”

      That word “normally” is the one which says that the UK Parliament can pass this unique Bill without the consent of the Scottish Parliament and the SNP.

  6. Jerry
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    The Great repeal Bill is very limited in its remit even though very broad in its (eventual) scope, and as such now that Brexit is going to happen all MPs and Peers should support it, after all it is actually quite a simple Bill.

    The problems come though should some try to add amendments which should ideally sit as their own specific repeal Bills after the UK has actually left the EU – eurosceptics should not try and repeal the EU directive on ‘Widgets’ at this stage, nor should europhiles attempt to extent its effects when taken into UK law (in other words what ever their pet hate or love is), the time to do either will be once Brexit is complete and the GRB has come into effect.

    If eurosceptics refrain from tabling amendments it will be easier to argue that any (wreaking) amendments from europhiles should be rejected.

  7. Mark B
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    A nice sensible article.

    But I feel I must ask our kind host the question again. What happens when the EU create another law ? Can we now delay it, or do we have to pass it unchanged as before ?

    I ask this question because the EU may try to enact legislation whilst we are still members, and I want to know if our government can protect both the UK and its people.

    Reply Any new directly acting Regulation or court judgement will affect us all the time we are in. New Directives need not be translated into UK law unless the UK Parliament likes them,as there is always a grace period over implementation.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:16 am | Permalink

      If I understand the government’s intention correctly the Act will be passed but the repeal of the crucial provisions of the 1972 Act will not come into force until the day we actually leave the EU, and so in the meantime those provisions will continue to operate, including Section 2:

      http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1972/68/section/2

      “1) All such rights, powers, liabilities, obligations and restrictions from time to time created or arising by or under the Treaties, and all such remedies and procedures from time to time provided for by or under the Treaties, as in accordance with the Treaties are without further enactment to be given legal effect or used in the United Kingdom shall be recognised and available in law, and be enforced, allowed and followed accordingly; and the expression “enforceable EU right” and similar expressions shall be read as referring to one to which this subsection applies …”

      No Remoaners are complaining, or even admitting, that year after year many EU laws have been implemented in this country by secondary not primary legislation, using the same “Henry VIII powers” that the government is now proposing to use to tidy up the small minority of those laws which cannot work as they stand once we are no longer in the EU. Not to mention – because they don’t – the many EU laws which have come into force in the UK without going anywhere near Parliament.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      A shame we did not leave nine months ago instead of May’s silly dithering. Better still had we never joined and we would not now need to sort out the dire mess these Europhile fake tories – Heath, even Thatcher, Major & Cameron created. Aided by Bliar and Brown.

      Is the foolish Theresa May really going to build on EU workers “rights”? Thus destroying UK productivity & UK jobs, creating more parasitic jobs and having a negative net effect for real workers.

      Surely even a geography graduate can see this?

      • Ed Mahony
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

        ‘A shame we did not leave nine months ago instead of May’s silly dithering’

        – Leadership isn’t just about good policies and timing. It’s also about trying to unite your country. I think she’s doing a great job here in a near impossible situation.
        You could have a leader with good policies and timing. But if they can’t unite the country, then it’s all going to end in failure.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted April 1, 2017 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

          What unites the country is policies that work. May interventionist, high tax, over regulated socialism will not. Thatcher won three elections (four with John Major as her man until the public sussed him out and dumped him).

          Why? Not because she united the country but because her policies of lower taxes and less government worked. Not enough of it then though, even from her.

    • Mark B
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      Many thanks.

  8. bratwurst
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    A question. Since there will have to be treaty change for the UK to leave, will the European Union Act 2011 (c. 12) apply? If so, will there have to be a referendum to approve it (and probably at least 3 treaties will need amendment), does this mean there will have to be a referendum to approve the changes? If so, will have to include Gibraltar.
    Although the act was intended to give the people a say over further transfer of powers toi the EU, it does not specify this. It only talks about treaty change.
    I think there is a danger of further attempts by frustrated leavers to contest this in the courts and potentially delay any resolution to beyond the 2 year negotiating period.

    Reply No! Weve had the referendum and are simply implementing it.

    • Simon
      Posted April 1, 2017 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

      Notwithstanding John’s usual style of reply of course the EU Act 2011 will apply. If it is ignored they will face further legal challenge. No one may ignore a statute in any circumstances.

  9. alan jutson
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    Sounds sensible, but given there are literally thousands of laws and regulations which have been created since we joined, I wonder who is going to decide which and when they will be amended.

    I understand that we need to change the rather obvious, like immigration (free movement) and fishing, but what about the thousands of other controls.
    Do we change them in time, or do we simply ignore them if they do not suit us, rather like all other EU countries have done over the years.

    We do not have a good track record of making a bonfire of regulations.

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:59 am | Permalink

      alan, Whenever Nigel Farage said that 75% of British Laws were made in the EU he was shot down, David Cameron said it was more like 14%, Nick Clegg told us it was even lower figures around 7%. 1,000 to 2,000 laws per year coming out of Brussels – no not that many we were told. Farage was quoting from an EU Commissioner who said “The truth is most laws applied, executed, implemented at national level are based on European laws.” DC from the Commons Library “The study said 13.2% of all laws made in the UK between 1993 and 2014 have been EU-related.”

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

        That was ignoring the EU regulations with direct effect. Revised to take them into account it was about half of our new laws derived from the EU.

    • Mark B
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      it is going to take a very long time to go through and get rid of stuff we do not like. But if a job is worth doing it is worth doing well.

  10. Old Albion
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    The Gov. has made a perfectly sensible decision Re. EU laws etc. Even the most rabid Remainiacs must see that. Except Nick Clegg obviously.

  11. fedupsoutherner
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    The UK government has responded well over another Scottish referendum. Good on Mrs May.

    https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/180642?reveal_response=yes

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Thanks. As you say, a good response and I think one which most people in Scotland will see as being a reasonable approach. Having said that I would not entirely rule out holding a second independence referendum once it has become clear whether or not Brexit has been good or bad for Scotland in practice. Not in theory; do not ask people to vote on the basis of wild SNP projections of disaster, but on the outcome as seen in practice. So I would say in 2024, ten years after the first referendum and five years after we have left the EU, and if it became necessary Theresa May could even offer to pass a Section 30 Order now to authorise a referendum to be held during 2024 if the Scottish Parliament still wanted one then.

  12. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:31 am | Permalink

    There is an ongoing propaganda war, and it seems to me that we are losing it.

    • Know-dice
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      Probably because of the “mischief making” of the BBC et al.
      In particular a certain BBC journalist that reckons she has an “inside ear” to everything and puts her own anti-Brexit twist on it… 🙁

    • Mark B
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      We were losing the propaganda war right up to 23rd June 2016. Didn’t do much good did it ? 🙂

      Art.50 has been sent. The clock is ticking down until we leave the Stupid Club.

      Rejoice !

    • ian wragg
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      Not so sure Denis, listened to Tusk this morning, a lot more measured and practical than I expected. Maybe the French farmers and German auto makers have been having a quiet word.
      No mention of a £50 billion divorce bill.
      Now Brexit is a reality there may be some cooler heads talking.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      Both sides used propaganda in the Referendum.

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 1, 2017 at 7:33 am | Permalink

      We had a referendum

      The result was tested in court and ratified by Parliament, given Royal assent.

      The Art 50 letter was signed and despatched by the rightfully appointed Prime Minister

      We are now leaving the EU

      Anyone or any organisation who disseminates against UK interests in negotiations in favour of foreign powers is now a traitor.

      This is not merely anti Brexit PR anymore – it is betrayal.

      The country has chosen its course and I can now use ‘country’ in the proper sense of the word despite Remains claims that ‘half the country’ are against Brexit.

      NO. They are not. They may dislike it but they want it done as cleanly and efficiently as possible.

  13. Simon
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    I can’t imagine anyone in Parliament will pay any attention to reading, commenting on or intervening to force a debate in any SI any more than they do now. As it is being sold as a process bringing continuity it will all pass completely unscrutinised. Much of it is of a highly technical nature which is completely impenetrable to not only lawyers but sector specialists, eg Finance. So much for “bringing back control” and (LOL) Parliamentary Sovereignty.

    Secondly this shambolic process will be conducted against a background of moving negotiations and shifting timetables. It will also be incorporating legislation which is – as is all EU law – in the process of changing even as we are trying to enact it. Finally the very minute it is “complete” it will immediately be out of synch unless we also agree to keep amending it in line with EU law. Divergence will start immediately.

    Furthermore much of the trade regulation technical detail emanating from the EU has actually originated in higher international agreements which we quite properly of necessity will still be bound by in any event.

    It absolutely baffles me John that a man such as yourself, with vast intelligence, education and commercial experience – exceptionally rare in the Commons – should persist in presenting such simplistic and diluted analysis of what are hideously complex problems.

    Many people regard you as a banner carrier and among the leaders of the Brexit cause – and yet you completely fail to use your formidable abilities and public platform to assist in the process at a practical level or to inform the MSM and your readers about the substantial difficulties. I write as a dedicated Brexiter but we never yet won a war with our head in the sand.

    As is common in these blogs it is far easier to moderate or block the messengers rather than address the problem. So let’s see if you publish this !

  14. Oggy
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    Good morning.
    The SNP will not approve the ‘Great Repeal bill’ as they want the powers already held in Brussels to stay there and not be repatriated which is bizarre and hypocritical considering they want independence. The UK government will then over rule them, I can feel more litigation coming on………………

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:29 am | Permalink

      Maybe, but the Supreme Court has already ruled that it is not the role of the judiciary to police a political convention such as the Sewel Convention.

      https://www.supremecourt.uk/cases/docs/uksc-2016-0196-judgment.pdf

      “146. Judges therefore are neither the parents nor the guardians of political
      conventions; they are merely observers … ”

      “… That follows from the nature of the content, and is acknowledged by the words (“it is recognised” and “will not normally”), of the relevant subsection. We would have expected UK Parliament to have used other words if it were seeking to convert a convention into a legal rule justiciable by the courts.”

      “151. In reaching this conclusion we do not underestimate the importance of
      constitutional conventions, some of which play a fundamental role in the operation
      of our constitution. The Sewel Convention has an important role in facilitating
      harmonious relationships between the UK Parliament and the devolved legislatures.
      But the policing of its scope and the manner of its operation does not lie within the
      constitutional remit of the judiciary, which is to protect the rule of law.”

      UK citizens in Scotland and their elected representative in the Scottish Parliament have had and will continue to have a say, but not a veto as the SNP would like.

  15. Anonymous
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    It is true that most EU laws are reasonable and difficult to object to. It’s the few ones that aren’t that deliver such a disproportionate and heavy impact.

    Such as the abuses of the Human Rights Act by terrorists and criminals via left wing/anti British lawyers. If anything caused Brexit it was this.

    These fools forgot to disenfranchise the British public *before* they started slapping them around and offending their sense of justice.

    So there had to be consequences and the vote to leave the EU is one of them.

  16. Andy Marlot
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Why do we want to keep all EU law? It has been ridiculed and loathed by millions in this country. It restricts and hampers business and people in their daily lives. There is far more we want to be rid of than keep out of the hundreds of thousands of petty and costly rules unelected bureaucrats have foisted on us. Get rid of it all and start again.

    • Know-dice
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      It’s only a temporary measure (hopefully) such at a “legal black hole” doesn’t form on Brexit day in two years minus 2 days time.

    • Mactheknife
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:26 am | Permalink

      @ Andy Marlot

      Its just a process we have to go through until we then start ditching the EU laws, rules and regulations we don’t want. Don’t panic we’ll get there.

    • Mark B
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:46 am | Permalink

      Because until the day we leave we are still governed by them 🙁

    • NickC
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

      Andy, Much of our governance is based on EU rules. Their continuation is needed to keep the country running until we have time to replace them. There are too many to deal with in the time frame of our exit.

  17. Roy Grainger
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    This repeal bill is perfectly sensible and logical – as you say it enshrines all existing workers’ rights protections in UK law. Why wouldn’t Labour like this ? Well, the answer is clear, Labour used the EU as a proxy to implement socialist laws on the UK during periods when Labour themselves were not actually in power in the UK, and as they were EU laws Conservative governments could not repeal them. Now Labour’s redress if they don’t like a law is to actually get themselves elected – an almost insurmountable obstacle it seems currently. I wonder what their position will be on this repeal bill ? Any indications ?

  18. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    This is an eminently sensible proposal, only the informal name is stupid, a hangover from a previous time when some people unrealistically imagined that we could quickly sort through the great mass of EU laws and throw bundles of them on a bonfire.

    Hopefully when the Bill is finally introduced it will not have that title, it will be something like the “European Union (Legal Continuity upon Withdrawal) Bill, and its core provision will be as global in its scope as Section 2 of the 1972 Act but saying in essence:

    “Every law we have got from the EU as a consequence of our membership will continue in force unchanged after we have left the EU, until such time as it is changed”.

    Which will take years if it is to be done carefully and after the appropriate debate, in fact it will be no surprise if some minor laws from the EU endure for decades. As I understand it’s seven decades since India became independent, but the Indians are still finding imperial leftovers on their statute book which have not yet been sorted out.

  19. James Matthews
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    Partly off topic. Mr Tusk has just announced his recommendations for negotiating guidelines. As expected he intends to insist that the “exit fee” must precede everything else.

    This is essentially an attempt to achieve negotiating dominance from the outset. We will now see the EU to demanding payments which are neither legally nor morally justifiable and refusing any offset in respect of EU assets which the UK has helped to pay for, but will no longer use after departure, the purpose being both to punish the UK and to fill the gap in the EU budget which will arise when we leave.

    This is the first test for our negotiators and they really have to pass it to avoid disaster. Will they have the resolution to refuse any unreasonable or illegal demands and say simply we are not going to pay, if the clock runs down (which is obviously what the EU intend), so be it., we will go out on WTO terms? We really have to hope so. Backbenchers who back Brexit must make it clear that this is the only stance they will support.

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

      I think the best approach on the exit fee is to put it in the hands of an independent 3rd-party judge and legal panel all from non-European countries and accept whatever fee they say is LEGALLY required based only on existing laws and treaties. So, get it off the table immediately.

      • rose
        Posted April 1, 2017 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

        Wouldn’t that set an unfortunate precedent? What about our independence and sovereignty? Surely the best approach is to say no. We can let the assets go too, and say so. This huge sum has been plucked out of the air, not to reflect what we owe, because we don’t, but to plug the hole after we leave and are no longer making the second biggest contribution.

        • rose
          Posted April 1, 2017 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

          After all, independent experts have already said we owe nothing.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      But they insist that “nothing is agreed until everything is agreed”.

      http://g8fip1kplyr33r3krz5b97d1.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/FullText.pdf

      “Negotiations under Article 50 TEU will be conducted as a single package. In accordance with the principle that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed, individual items cannot be settled separately.”

      So surely saying that first of all we must agree about the money and then we can move on to other matters inherently contradicts that principle, under which the money cannot be finally agreed until everything else is agreed?

      I also note that thanks to that inflexible EU principle the EU citizens resident in the UK, and the UK citizens resident elsewhere in the EU, will have to wait for that final agreement to be approved to be sure what rights they will have in the future.

  20. acorn
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    The Great Repeal Bill must contain a clause that all sub-primary, delegated legislation in all its forms, not just standard Statutory Instruments, shall be subject to the affirmative resolution procedure in Parliament.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      Unlike EU Directives the numerous EU Regulations have direct effect and many of them don’t go anywhere near Parliament. Instead the raft of state bodies which have been empowered by Parliament to make detailed rules and regulations must ensure that they are always consistent with the relevant EU laws, and often they can do that without any reference back to Parliament. Supporters of the EU never objected to that extra-parliamentary procedure in the past, in fact those like Mr “7%” Clegg deliberately chose to ignore the mass of EU regulations which did not need any intervention by the UK Parliament, not even the passage of an SI, to come into effect in the UK. But as Parliament did not vote on their original implementation I don’t see why we should insist that Parliament must vote on their repeal.

      • acorn
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

        But, parliament did vote on the implementation of EU “regulations”, in the European Communities Act 1972.

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

          Through which Act Parliament eschewed any further involvement with most of the regulations “done in Brussels” year after year.

  21. Leslie Singleton
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    Dear John–The BBC News has been excelling itself once again, making out that they were trying against the staggering odds to explain the effect of this Bill in face of a worried and confused Nation. Baloney. The Bill is extremely simple and the effects of the Bill itself are zero.

  22. Eeyore
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    Thank you for being the voice of sanity in all of this, Mr Redwood. I heard you paraded briefly on The Today Programme yesterday (or was it The World at One?) as the token Brexiteer, but in the short space given you (cf the extended, grumpy, patronising waffle from Lord Patten) you did manage to get across a number of important points.

    The question that keeps on troubling me is this: why are you not in the Cabinet? Or at least a member of the Brexit negotiating team?

    • eeyore
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      I see I have an identity crisis here, or at least a doppelganger. New improved Eeyore may be distinguished from your humble servant by his capital E and, of course, by his capital good sense too.

      Perhaps I need a new pseudonym. What about lifelogic (lower case L)?

  23. agricola
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    A lengthy explanation of the obvious. Those who wish to find fault with it for their own political ends will do so however well it is explained. A word of caution. Do not hand over any more powers deriving from the incorporation of EU law into UK law to the Scottish Parliament until we are well clear of Brexit and can make a considered judgement on the SNP’s ability to sensibly use the powers they already have.

  24. Bert Young
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Maintaining stability is the right course for us to take and , as soon as we can , we can modify or change those laws that do not suit us or be realistic at the time . Many ridiculous rules and regulations have emerged during our time in the EU , one I can cite is the stupid restriction on vacuum cleaner power . When our vacuum cleaner packed up my wife was informed at the appropriate shop in Wallingford that the model we had was no longer available because it was too powerful ; the EU had imposed this restriction with little notice !. There have been many other instances of similar regulations that have created a nuisance value to our ordinary every day lives .

    Today I am annoyed that the EU stance in Malta has once again issued its insistence that negotiations over a trade agreement can begin once we have agreed a separation settlement . This is not the way for any sort of a deal to be struck ; negotiations need to intertwine all the features of our exiting and not be heralded by the monetary punishment the EU want to inflict . If this is not overcome , I believe we should simply leave and let the EU twiddle their thumbs waiting .

  25. Antisthenes
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    I am beginning to believe that the EU and remoaners having been on the ropes since the fight to leave the EU started post the referendum are finding the strength to fight back. The preconditions to Brexit negotiations and the need for this repeal bill are heavy blows that are turning the fight in their favour. Having to continue with EU law upon leaving and accept draconian and offensive demands even before negotiations begin are obstacles that makes a fair fight impossible. It is now going to be a street fight and Queensberry rules be damned.

    The EU is giving us no choice. We must decline to negotiate anything until everything can be dealt with simultaneously. How the repeal bill is not made into a weapon for remoaners to use against us or even becomes legislation that is flexible enough for swift and decisive reworking post Brexit is going to be a mammoth task for government. It may be that there will be no meaningful negotiations and therefore a totally different repeal bill than envisaged now.

  26. Original Richard
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:18 am | Permalink

    “Its [The Great Repeal Bill] prime purpose is to transfer all current directly acting EU laws and past court decisions into UK law.”

    If the idea is to simply transfer all existing EU legislation and court decisions into UK law so that we can make amendments to these laws after we leave the EU, then why can this not be done with a single line clause ?

    BTW I read in the Telegraph that Mr. Tusk says that the EU will only accept a trade deal if we agree to not cut taxes. Does he mean all taxes, or just corporation tax where Ireland has a rate well below that of the UK ?

    This would clearly not be acceptable and the UK government needs to plan and prepare the country for WTO trading with the EU and hence counter the argument that this would be bad for the UK.

  27. Mike Wilson
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Sorry, off topic, but I’d be interested in your views, Mr. Redwood, on the planned change so that people like me have to submit a tax return four times a year. I can’t put into words how I feel about this without getting censored. I am really, really annoyed about.

    Once people realise that yet another slice of their time and money has been taken by the government, I’d say millions, literally millions, of people will never vote Tory again.

    I’m laying off staff and turning down future work and will de-register for VAT as a first step. Then I’m closing my business. I’ve had enough of this nonsense.

    Way to support enterprise – as they say in the States.

    Joy, got the Captcha first time.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

      Agree Mike. My husband is giving up too. Yes, he is getting on in years, but he’s glad he is at an age where he would give up anyway and doesn’t have to worry about all this extra work. I think a lot of people will feel the same way you do. Yet another mistake from Mrs May and co.

  28. Denis Cooper
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    It’s good to see that the parliamentary scrutiny system is working well:

    https://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/treasury-committee/news-parliament-2015/collapse-in-confidence-cds-16-17/

    “Collapse in confidence in the Customs Declaration Service”

    “The Treasury Committee has published correspondence between Rt Hon. Andrew Tyrie MP, Chairman of the Treasury Committee, and Jim Harra, Director General (Customer, Strategy and Tax Design) of HMRC, on the collapse in confidence in the successful implementation of the Customs Declaration System.”

    “Commenting on the correspondence, Mr Tyrie said:

    “In just 67 days, confidence in the successful implementation of the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) – a project that HMRC itself describes as ‘business critical’ – has collapsed. On 25 November 2016 it was given a ‘Green’ rating, meaning that it was ‘successful’ and ‘on time’. On 31 January 2017, it was given an ‘Amber/red’ rating, meaning it was ‘in doubt’, with ‘major risks’, and needing ‘urgent action’.

    Customs is at the heart of the Brexit debate. It is part of the essential plumbing for international trade, and ensuring it continues to function smoothly post-Brexit has to be a priority for the Government.

    The CDS is needed in order to handle a possible five-fold increase in declarations that could occur when the UK leaves the EU. The consequences of this project failing, or even being delayed, could be serious. Much trade could be lost. The project, therefore, merits a high degree of scrutiny by Parliament.

    I have written to the Infrastructure and Projects Authority to ask them for their latest assessment of the state of the CDS project. I have also written to Nick Lodge, Director General Transformation at HM Treasury, for further information on the risks to the project. The Committee will also want to see the contingency plans, in the event that the CDS is not delivered on time.””

    Fortunately there is still plenty of time to sort this out before we actually leave the EU and therefore its customs union, and so the volume of declarations will greatly increase, by some accounts by a factor of five.

    This is another problem that could not, repeat not, be avoided by continued membership of the EEA, which is not quite the panacea that some like to suggest.

    It is true that the plan is to cut the HMRC budget over the next three years, just when it is facing this unprecedented challenge and so may need extra resources, but even if that plan is still retained no doubt the Chancellor will be able to draw on his contingency fund to provide whatever extra resources may be necessary.

    And of course there would always be the legal possibility of having a transition period after the UK has left the EU, if that was necessary to prevent trucks with our imports from the EU stacking up as far as Brussels.

  29. Mactheknife
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    I note from media reports (with the exception of the usual suspects) that there seems to be a conciliatory tone from the EU leadership and a realisation that it is in the interests of the EU to get key issues settled and agreed and for the transition to be as painless as possible. Not all EU legislation is bad, so I think a large proportion will remain in UK law.
    However if parliament focus on the key issues such as border control, welfare benefits, fisheries and farming policy etc and get these back under UK control, much of the public concern will be alleviated I feel.
    If both the UK and EU take a rational, pragmatic approach, then we are in the proverbial “win-win” situation.

  30. Snow White
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    In Parliament yesterday,The Great Repeal Bill was discussed. Mardy ex-Tory Cabinet MPs who usually sit in the corner on the back bench want clarity after clarity and assurance after assurance they are the fairest of them all in the mirror of Parliament. Looking at them,they ask the impossible.

  31. Iain Moore
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    It was silly to call it The Great Repeal Bill, for all that has done is rile the left and environmentalists who are being wound up by Remainer’s tales of wholesale removal of rights and environmental protections. It would have been better if they had called it the Great Transfer Bill, for that is really what is happening, a transfer of EU legislation on our books. Calling the Repeal Bill is just going to result in a lot of obstruction when really we need cooperation from all sides to get the necessary work done.

  32. hefner
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    A big fuss this morning on the French radio related to defects found in a major piece of equipment for the EPR nuclear plant in Flamanville with AREVA as a major player in hiding some bad engineering. Likely to potentially affect the future of Hinkley.

  33. JoolsB
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    With respect John, despite you saying you speak for England and no doubt a believer in free speech, I notice that none of my comments criticising what many consider an anti-English Conservative Government, your government, appear for at least 24 hours, obviously long after many have stopped reading that article.

  34. Mike Stallard
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    OK – up to now.
    What happens after we leave to all the new Directives? How can they be implemented? If they are not implemented, how can we trade inside what the conservatives have (wrongly) christened the “Single Market?
    When we are no longer a “Member State” how can we gain mutual recognition status?

    It is slowly being proved that outside the EEA, we cannot trade with Europe – or, actually a lot of other parts of the world where, up to now, we have got our standards from the EEA.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      Dear Mike–Cannot follow what you are saying–The rest of the world’s countries trade with Europe–How many are members of the EEA?–Tariffs are not the end of the world

    • ian wragg
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

      Get back in your box Mike with your mate. We aren’t joining the EEA (just like China and the USA) so stop talking silly.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

      So what does it mean when the EU’s draft negotiating guidelines state:

      “The British government has indicated that it will not seek to remain in the single market, but would like to pursue an ambitious free trade agreement with the European Union. Based on the Union’s interests, the European Council stands ready to initiate work towards such an agreement, to be finalised and concluded once the United Kingdom is no longer a Member State.”

      Do you think it means “We will make sure that the UK cannot trade with us”?

      • Chris
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

        Well said, DC. I think MS has been subjected to a barrage of “euref think” and as no contrary views are apparently permitted on that site it can alter perspectives on things? I am always very suspicious of websites that apparently try to stifle opposing views simply because the website owner thinks these commenters are unintelligent or worse. The art of winning in politics is not based on economics, so RN may have very sound economic plans, but they do not address the issues that concern real people, and so are likely to be rejected by a government which is trying to enact the will of the people as expressed in the Referendum result.

  35. lojolondon
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Dear John, I hope the Conservative Party will be sure to remove the law which allows EU boats to fish our waters??

  36. Iain Moore
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    We were told by the EUphiles that little old EU was no bigger than the size of Birmingham Council and they fervently disputed that the EU was a source of many of our laws. Yet now we are having to deal with ten’s of thousands of EU laws. Gosh they weren’t lying to us and indulging in fake news when they attempted to minimise the role of the EU were they? The size of the task transferring EU legislation and rules onto our books suggest they were.

    • Chris
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      Chickens coming home to roost, I think.

  37. BOF
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    The Great Repeal Bill is a good solution and essential for continuity, but MPs should devote a great deal of time to removing great swathes of this legislation asap.

    Having now seen Donald Tusk’s reply to Mrs May’s letter it seems impossible to believe that he is motivated by good will. Mrs May should politely remove the UK from the EU sooner rather than later

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

      Dear BOF–Agreed, except would prefer immediately and let them go away and chew on that

  38. Andy
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    There is no other way of doing things but to copy over all EU Laws. However, I can see the need to use King Henry VIII powers to amend much of it to make it workable, but surely committees of the Privy Council could be set up to go over each policy area and do the amending with a final instrument of authorisation agreed by each House at the end of the process. There ought to be sunset clauses inserted into every policy area so the Laws are reviewed or die within a certain period.

    I notice the waffle coming from the EU27 about ‘liabilities’. I don’t hear the word ‘Assets’. I trust HMG will be vigorous in demanding a fair share of the EUs assets considering we have been one of teh main contributors to their accumulation over 44 years.

  39. Tom William
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    I see that today Donald Tusk has said:

    “We will need to make sure the UK honours all financial commitments and liabilities,” Mr Tusk added. “It is only fair towards all those people — communities, scientists, farmers and so on — to whom we, all 28, promised and owed this money.”

    Your “resignation from a golf club” argument comes to mind. Of course we will pay all dues until we leave but you no more pay a mortgage after your house has been sold – or demolished – and nor should we.

    • Chris
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      Nor does a golf club stipulate how we play golf i.e. the rules of engagement, after we leave.

  40. ian
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Unless you vote for independent MPs at the next election, nothing much is going to change, as you know most MPs were for staying in the eu and are liberals, this is there chance to show you that coming out of the eu will make little difference and that they can debate new laws coming out of the eu and vote them in hear as well to keep as close to the eu as possible just in case they want hop back in, it all up to the voters and who they vote for but i think you will vote as you always have for a party on a meaningless manifesto which will be water down and in some cases abandon because of not having the votes in parliament to get it through because of there own MPs voting against the changes.

    As you have seen in the last few years with the con party, they are now cutting services to the bone and as for small businesses, reporting to the tax office 4 times a year through there accountant will add thousands of pounds to costs to running a business depending on the size, increase in business rates, pension for employee even if you only have one and more which cannot remember at this time, so as far as remove red tape for small businesses by coming out of the eu i think that is none starter with the liberal MPs, just more to be added on to put more small businesses out of business or put there prices right up to stay afloat, so you will have to pay a lot more for the services you need for your houses and cars.

  41. Matt
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    The worry now is that the negotiations will commit us to keep our law aligned with EU law in return for enhanced access to their internal market. Single market membership by the back door.

    • Chris
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      Yes, hugely worrying, and those MPs entrusted with keeping Brexit true to Brexit will have to work hard right until the last minute. That is really why a robust UKIP is required, as, of course, Labour is no use in this situation.

  42. norman
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    I am among those who see the imperative of Britain’s exit from the EU, as I know more than most what is at stake, at every level. I have also seen, from my Civil Service days, how trade rules work. Basically, no-one is going to allow ANY product into their country that does not meet certain standards – this is inviolable. I don’t think the general public realize just how hugely exacting these standards are nowadays, especially in the Food and general Safety field. So it does make sense to transpose all these rules (millions of pages of them!) into our own law, then to gradually amend them over time if expedient to do so. And by the way, other countries, including the USA are just as fussy, sometimes moreso, in what they require. As a trading nation, and without losing sight of that precious commodity – our democratic SOVEREIGNTY – we have to remember the old maxim: ‘the customer is always right’.

    • ian wragg
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

      We trade with about 140 other countries which aren’t in the EU and manage perfectly fine.

    • David Price
      Posted April 1, 2017 at 6:27 am | Permalink

      So we need to ensure we take back our seats in the international standards/regulatory bodies while maintaining our standards management and enforcement bodies and processes appropriately.

      Do I hear the civil service and NGO fountain pens scratching out the requests for increased funding and resources?

    • lojolondon
      Posted April 1, 2017 at 6:34 am | Permalink

      Thing is – we sell far more services than products – so Britain is uniquely suited for the new business model, whichever way you look at it!

  43. Pat
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    Whilst the principal that EU law be passed into UK law for subsequent confirmation, amendment or repeal by Parliament, I would suggest a sunset clause thus encouraging Parliament to get on with doing so.
    I would suggest six years, which should be ample time to give each law proper consideration, and which would expire just before the next general election but one.

  44. Pat
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Correction:
    The principal is a necessary one.

  45. Oggy
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been hearing that a leaked EU document suggests Spain could (more like would) veto any UK/EU trade deal unless Spain has a say in the future of Gibraltar.
    Where are we – oh yes A50 day plus 2, and I’m already thinking the EU doesn’t want a trade deal with the UK and is doing everything it can to undermine the UK. Is this the EU democracy you were referring to Dr Redwood ?
    The sovereignty of Gibraltar is non negotiable – I for one would tell Spain and the EU to shove their trade deal and walk away. WTO sounds more attractive by the minute.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      Oggy, if this is true then we should walk away. Being held to ransom over territory is taking politics into the gutter and shows the nasty side of the EU for what it is. What do their morals tell the rest of the world? As per normal the UK gets a good hiding for no reason. Their position is hardly reasonable.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

      We need to be cool-headed now. It’s not Gibraltar that could be a spanner in the works, but also the N. Irish border, Scotland as well as the Falkland Island, with the Argentinians taking advantage of any situation where we find ourselves possibly isolated from the EU (and I’m afraid, the USA, under Trump, is going to be no help to us at all).

      • Chris
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

        The possibilities are endless, and that is why Theresa May has to get a firmer grip on procedures/proceedings. Too many diversions are being permitted under the current system.

    • Newmania
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

      Right …lets send a gun boat …. what have you done !

      • Ed Mahony
        Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

        If everyone just unites over Brexit, and stays cool-headed, we can get a deal that works for all, including satisfying, overall, those who voted for Brexit. I voted Remain, but democracy is more important that what i or anyone else thinks. And 52% voted to leave the EU.

      • Anonymous
        Posted April 1, 2017 at 7:38 am | Permalink

        I expect a town like – at randon – Lewes is not particularly affected by mass immigration, and certainly not the less desirable form of it.

      • Oggy
        Posted April 1, 2017 at 8:46 am | Permalink

        Why blame us for the EU and Spain’s dirty tactics ? this just reveals what the EU is REALLY like under it’s ‘democratic facade’.
        What puzzles me though is why people such as yourself are so in love with such a nasty institution.

    • treacle
      Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      It’s Day 2. Mr Tusk is wandering around looking as if he has suffered a nervous breakdown (he must have imagined that we would be made to keep voting until we arrived at the right answer). And the EU are saying “Give us £50 billion and Gibraltar and then maybe we’ll start talking about trade.” It makes us look very foolish to have got involved with these crooks in the first place. It’s as if we have fallen for a scam and are now trying to get out of it.

  46. Ed Mahony
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    We need to be cautious now, as we don’t want to lose Gibraltar (this is something that drives the Spanish nuts), disrupt the peace process in N. Ireland nor lose Scotland to the Scottish Nationalists. Another concern is that Argentina might take advantage of our possible isolation in Europe to go after the Falkland Islands.

  47. ChrisS
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    It looks increasingly less likely that a deal over free trade is going to be possible.

    Until the 27 and the Brussels establishment are convinced that A50 is not going to be reversed, they will procrastinate endlessly. The problem is that they listen to bad losers like Clegg and Blair rather than those currently in power.

    Mrs May needs to ignore people like Soubry, Clegg et al and constantly remind Brussels that no deal is genuinely better than a poor one. Fortunately our PM seems determined that the ECJ should have no further role and that we shall be a completely sovereign country.

    The 27 need to be told that Sovereignty means exactly that : we will not accept being told by Merkel that must have restrictions on our ability to decide our own tax rates, nor will we accept any EU limitations on deals we choose to make with other countries.

    They simply can’t resist trying to impose restrictions of one kind of another. If they continue down this route, we might as well walk away now and stop sending our £10bn net contribution to Brussels immediately.

  48. Martin
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    Will the Common Agricultural Policy be renamed the Corn Laws in the so called Great Repeal Act?

    Perhaps Miscellaneous Cut and Paste Provisions Act would be a better name?

    I remain amazed that the worst and most expensive part of the EU seems to be ignored, even on here, for abolition.

    Down with the Corn Laws!

  49. I. Ronny
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    Perhaps Sir Michael Fallon our Defence Minister has had a quiet word today on meeting with US Defense Secretary General James Mattis. All this stuff about Russians mysteriously convincing Western electorates to vote for parties which wish to massively increase defen(c)(s)e spending. ( to fight Russia! ) Doesn’t sound quite a balanced and likely scenario or view. It could undermine non-Americans into thinking America is waco, except for the Republicans and Russian migrants.

  50. Terry
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

    I have to ask you John, as a dedicated Europhobe, if you will encourage Mrs May to give the EU a firm ultimatum. Either they play the diplomatic game or this country will turn its back on them and go our own way and without delay.

    It seems both outrageous and disgusting to me that they have the audacity to order us to act as though we must remain subservient to Brussels, regardless of the democratic will of the British people. We voted to leave and they now dictate to us how we can do it, or not. All enforced with ominous threats to our well-being in the free world.
    Having saved Europe in Two World Wars it seems as though Brussels has ignored our UK sacrifices and now moves to protect their own domineering Oligarchy today.
    This has never been the way us British have done business and is more the way that wars have been started. I trust that is not their intention here.
    Therefore, this country must be very, very clear about our own intentions and our goals with a firm warning that to upset the flow would be taken as a dangerous effrontery to diplomacy and we will withdraw immediately from the Treaty of Rome if those threats are not retracted AND retracted officially.
    To do less will be to display weakness which will be capitalised upon and that should never be the case for democracy, especially when OUR National Sovereignty is as stake, as it was for the whole of Europe in World War 2. We shall not forget them!

  51. Sue Doughty
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

    The EU’s response to Mrs May’s letter is strange. They call Brexit a divorce. In doing so they acknowledge that we have ownership of the assets of the “marriage” and the settlement will be made. The UK has been the second highest contributor to the EU for 40 years so we own, what, 38% of each and every asset. This is to be valued and that amount transferred back to the UK. If payment is not received within 10 working days of close of Brexit, that is 29th March 2019, the liquidators will be sent in, all properties sealed and utilities closed off, all vehicles seized or returned to the leasers. If after a preset few days grace payment still has not been made the whole lot will be sold at auction to the highest bidder and the proceeds shared accordingly.
    And then there is the problem of the seed money that set up the European Central Bank. Mostly in gold that still resides in the vaults of the bank of England it must be re-stamped as belonging to the UK and all cash and currencies placed there by the UK repatriated here.

  52. turbo terrier
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    Well the EU with their stupid if not outrageous demands presented with such joy by the BBC on the 6pm news can only provoke one reply.

    Second word is off.

    Just get us out of this madness NOW. Maybe then they just might get the idea it is best to engage brain before mouth. We have to show them we are not going to be their next patsy. The realization that we will just up and walk away will focus all the companies and their workers who rely so heavily on exporting their goods to the UK .

    They must be bricking it as one of their biggest contributors walks away. Must be trying to build up a nest egg to bide them over, until another mug comes along to join them.

    Talking of which. What leader/politician in their right mind would want to be associated with them, let alone be a member of this thuggish fear provoking organisation.

  53. Socrates
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Has you noticed that when the debate about the extent of European legislation being forced through the UK Parliament the Euro supporters always said that Eurosceptic claims were enormous exaggerations?

    They said that Europe hardly forced any legislation on us.

    It seems ironic that now they are saying that because of the vast amount of Euro regulations in our legislation that it’s all too hard to remove and so presumeably we shouldn’t bother and just remain.

  • About John Redwood


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

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