Mrs May faces a big defeat

It is true a fortnight is a long time in politics, and people can change their minds. It is also true that on the current arithmetic Mrs May is not just facing the loss of a crucial vote, but she is facing a landslide defeat. So far she has only mustered around 220 Conservative MPs who will probably vote for her proposal, with maybe 10 others from Opposition parties who might defy their party whips to support her. This leaves around 400 MPs of all parties who have said they will vote against. A defeat by around 170 would be a huge blow. The announcement by Sir Michael Fallon on Monday that he was against the Agreement was another big loss for her, as most had him down as a reliable government supporter.

What could she do instead? She could announce she has taken soundings and realises that her attempt to find a set of compromises with the EU has not produced an Agreement that suits either side or any party in the Commons. She will therefore cancel the debate and vote. Instead she would have to go back to the EU and tell them the draft Agreement they like is unacceptable to the UK Parliament. It either needs to be materially amended or the two sides need to agree on the UK leaving in March 2019 followed by free trade talks swiftly afterwards, or preferably starting immediately.

The amendment route looks unlikely to succeed. The EU has a long history of offering the UK too little too late to retain the country in its legal and political system, and will not take kindly to being told they have overdone it again. The rewrite necessary to the 585 page Withdrawal Agreement would be so wide ranging to make sure it can pass the Commons that it seems unlikely it could be achieved, even given lots of goodwill from the EU side.

This leaves us with exit and free trade arrangements, which is what will remain assuming Parliament does vote down Mrs May’s motion. Opposition forces in Parliament may want to find a way to delay Brexit or to push the idea of a second referendum, but this would not honour the results of the referendum. It would also require both the consent of each member state of the EU and new legislation in the UK in a Parliament with no government majority for any approach that entails deviating from implementing Brexit. It is no longer possible even if Parliament wanted it to legislate for a referendum and hold one prior to exit day on 29 March 2019.

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  1. Newmania
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    Yes we are headed towards a crisis that is truly terrifying . Last night I attended a parents forum and the extent of cuts to our local schools and associated budgets was the subject of the evening . None of us have seen a pay rise in years and many have lost decent jobs to take insecure jobs instead .
    The country is over 80% of GDP in debt and struggling already and now we are sailing straight into an iceberg concocted largely by the old that will hurt each of our children now and in the future ., I don`t think you have understood the anger that will erupt if we fall out into chaos . We cannot do this again. It must not not happen and I implore anyone with any power in this to stop the madness

    • Richard
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

      A sensible ‘Brexiteer compromise’ is JRM’s No Deal Plus: “for a 21-month transition period until the end of 2020, both sides would maintain a standstill with zero tariffs on either’s goods and no additional barriers… In return, the UK would continue to make payments to the EU budget which are just under £10 billion a year, net. [SIC]”
      In March 2017 a government official said: “we do have special dispensation under WTO rules to continue our current trading relationship with the EU, which is zero tariffs, until such time as that free trade agreement is finished and the precedent that has been set is that we would have 10 years to do that.”

      Meanwhile, the UK is TODAY legally entitled to negotiate (both EU & RoW) FTAs and Interim FTAs before Brexit, so long as they are only intended to come into force after the date of exit. i.e. Plan A+

      • Dave Andrews
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

        No need to give them any money, or commit to an end date. Just put it on a rolling deal and review every six months say.
        Go behind the backs of the Commission and appeal directly to the member countries. They will go for it in the interest of trade.

    • Maybot
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

      Debt and no pay rises… whilst in the EU.

      Pressure on house prices and excessive borrowing ? Coincidence ?

      • Maybot
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

        Those working in meat-world jobs have felt this for decades, which is why we got Brexit.

    • Anonymous
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:58 pm | Permalink


      I have no sympathy.

      You have never ever given any credit to us. At every turn you have called us racists and stupid and both insults are deeply hurtful and offensive and plainly wrong.

      Advertisers know their stuff. If there was any risk of offending the 85% white English they wouldn’t be making their adverts almost exclusively multiracial in casting.

      Both Remain Ireland and Remain Scotland has much ground to make up on Leave England in terms of diversity and cultural integration.

    • Jagman84
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

      The ‘cuts’ you refer to are the consequence of our EU membership and the effective open-door immigration it precipitates. Add to this, a seemingly provocative plan to put newcomers above the settled population (not just the indigenous) who are expected to pay for this virtue signalling and you are surprised that chaos reigns in the public services? It is your (and your fellow traveller’s) wrong-headed thinking and our mess to clear up, yet again!

      • Chris
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

        Newmania, you have your clear answer from Jagman84.

      • Newmania
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:25 pm | Permalink

        It is 100% clear that inward migration from Europe is a bonus to the exchequer. That has been brought out in the treasury analysis and indeed every single piece of serious work on the subject form any source .
        I think even John Redwood would not dispute this basic fact

        It is a natural inclination of people (who are not in my view always the noble creatures politicians are obliged to pretend they are) to create scapegoats . The sort of myth you have swallowed will always have a ready audience
        I don`t blame you so much as the people who , knowing the toxicity of the lies have spread their poison anyway .

        • Edward2
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 7:51 am | Permalink

          Lets have a million a year new arrivals so we can all be rich.

          • hans christian ivers
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

            Edward 2

            What an ignorant contribution not helpful nor argued at all

          • Edward2
            Posted December 2, 2018 at 1:20 am | Permalink

            I havent got time for an essay hans nor am I paid to post.
            However for your benefit here is my response to help you understand a bit better.
            Newmania has a ridiculous theory that immigration makes us better off 100%.
            Some controlled immigration may do so but uncontrolled unlimited immigration plainly will not.
            Which is why I posted my comment.

            Might I suggest you stop writing your short admonishing style comments and instead write out your own ideas amd arguments.
            You are not the taste editor on here.

        • Rien Huizer
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 10:19 am | Permalink


          Do you think you would be better off without migration? Of course I do not mean you specifically here, you may be the lucky exception (or the unlucky one). What is happening in the UK is happening all over the world, except in countries that have a way to go until they reach living standards around where the coastal cities of China are (and you, specifically, are probably way over that Chinese level yourself). It is called globalisation and that is not a political phenomenon, but simple the result of a combination of information and tranbsportation technologies that cause “the death of distance”. Politicians have few means to block those effects, and certainly not thge fiscal means to compensate the losers. That is one of the reasons that real wage growth in most countries (but not the world average, because the past 40 years we doubled the world’s educated, socialized urban workforce, at wage levels far below where the world avarage for industrial urban workers was in, say 1975 (when Japan was still growing fast, Korea just starting and China still closed. Container transport was still in the minority and infpormation technology still in the citadels of very large companies.

          No regime (system of government) could have blocked the mean-reversion that took place in both the developed world (combined loss of employment and union power) and resulted in real wage stagnation (the worst is yet to come, mind you) in the original OECD countries and very fast growth elsewhere, wherever governments were pro-business.

          Now this is not going to get better and unfortunately, the next 20 years those stagnant wages will buy you less and less in the shops because more and more of your consumption will consist of the cost of care, inexorably rising as the population grows older.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 3, 2018 at 7:52 am | Permalink

            Here you see the open borders globalist vision from rien.
            No limits to how many should come into Europe.
            Claiming the more we allow in the wealthier we will be.
            New arrivals get old and need looking after too.
            What you want is a ponzi scheme but in people rather than money.

    • Neil F
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

      If you find the prospect of regaining our freedom by incurring a small hit to GDP because of a WTO Brexit ‘terrifying’ then you need to have a nice cup of tea and a lie down as you are clearly hyper-ventilating. As our American cousins say, freedom isn’t free and a price needs to be paid to get the EU monkey off our backs. Let’s also not forget that nobody will die in stark contrast to WW2 when hundreds of thousands died for the same cause. Please don’t be so hysterical.

      • Newmania
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

        2008 was small hit to GDP

        • Edward2
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:29 am | Permalink

          Even Project Fear 2 economic predictions only predict a tiny reduction in growth over a 15 year period.

          Apart from Carney’s ridiculous nonsense.

          • Stred
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 8:05 am | Permalink

            Lewes is full of Remoaning public service employees. They will be rustling their Guardians in anger and begging for second chance to be run by Brussels fonctionairs like themselves.

    • tony
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      ‘Terrifying’? Get a grip!

    • rose
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

      “We cannot do this again”

      Do you mean leave as we left the ERM? That was the beginning of our recovery and so will this be.

    • libertarian
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:44 pm | Permalink


      I can only assume your job woes are down to the fact that you’re not very good . The rest of the country has seen wage growth above inflation, there are 810,000 unfilled full time jobs, and Financial Services ( in which you claim expertise) has seen a rise in new vacancies of 13% in the last year . The average salary in FS is £48,000

      • Newmania
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:46 pm | Permalink

        We certainly have no problem recruiting experienced professionals at much much less than £48,000 ? I don`t suppose your information comes form a recruitment consultant does it ? They are generally liars
        I don`t claim any special expertise by the way , I know the things that absolutely anyone ought to know

        • Edward2
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:31 am | Permalink

          Look up the meaning of the word “average”

        • libertarian
          Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:01 pm | Permalink


          No my information comes from the fact that I run a data analytics company specialising in employment data . I supply the data to the kind of institutions and organisations you like to quote. Its how I know they are telling porkies.

          As a financial expert I’m astounded you dont know what an average is.

    • L Jones
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      Remainers = self self self and their comfortable lifestyles

      Leavers = the freedom and well-being of our sovereign country

  2. Stoke leaver
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    I am curious as to your motives, John Redwood. Once May’s deal is voted down, it is obvious that leaving without a deal is not going to happen – no more than 20 or so MPs do or would support such an economically catastrophic outcome (you, ReesMogg, Bone, a few others). The EU will not change the terms of the deal. So the only way out is for a second referendum, and once May’s deal is rejected and no-deal is unthinkable, there will be large majority for the second referendum in the Commons. So, John Redwood, it seems to me you are behaving in the way most likely to provoke a second referendum and (according to all polls) a clear majority to remain in the EU. If you are really a leaver – and I am now having my doubts – you would support Mrs May’s deal and then change it later, after next March – as Mr Gove has intelligently suggested

    Reply The polling shows more support for leaving without the Withdrawal Agreement which is what I will vote for

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      Will you pay for the cost of a second poll to tell us exactly what we already know?

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:37 pm | Permalink

      Dear Stoke Leaver–Not for a moment do I think it is true that the EU will not change the terms of the “deal”. They’ll change all right and PDQ once we stop rolling over. It remains true that they have more to lose than us and we have infinitely more to gain in the wider world than they do. Tell them to go boil their heads.

      • margaret howard
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 12:14 am | Permalink

        Makes you wonder why we begged to become members all these years ago. According to you we were doing so well they should have begged to join us. (no doubt you don’t believe that we were called the ‘sick man of Europe’ before we joined and that membership turned us into the world’s 5th largest economy

        Germany supported our application at the time despite de Gaulle’s repeated ‘NON’. I bet they regret it now.

        Reply As a young man I did not beg to join and voted to leave in 1975 because it was such a bad idea to join

        • Edward2
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:34 am | Permalink

          We joined a trading bloc.
          Lefties like you hated the idea.
          Now it is turning into the United States of Europe you love it.

        • libertarian
          Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

          margaret howard

          How many times are you going to post the same falsehood ?

          The press labeled us the sick man of Europe AFTER WE JOINED , we were the third largest economy before we joined

          Keep spouting your nonsense , I guess it comforts you to believe it.

    • Stred
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 9:16 am | Permalink

      It is s triumph of Remain propaganda that they have spun the idea that to trade with the EU as we already do half our trade would be a catastrophe. When Mrs Balls asks Mrs May if she could be the sort of awful person who would allow WTO and she answered that capitulation is the only deal, we really have to wonder whether these politicians are very thick or very dishonest, or perhaps both.

      • libertarian
        Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:05 pm | Permalink


        Exactly, and worryingly I think they are mostly thick

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:20 am | Permalink

    Why on earth are 220 Tory MPs still going to vote for it? They must be totally bonkers. Even relatively sensible people like Leadsome, Gove, Fox, Barclay, Grayling, Kwasi Kwarteng and Zahawi it seems?

    May’s deal will certainly destroy the Tories, revive UKIP and give us a Corbyn government and a trip to Venezuela. It will bury the Tories even more than the still no apology dope John ERM Major did.

    Labour are edging gently towards a “people’s” vote (it must have been squirrels or something voting last time). The appalling socialist liar Theresa May will probably go for this too if she is not rapidly removed. Doubtless she would favour a question like:-
    A. Theresa’s worse than remain vassal state, pay up and in prison for ever deal or
    B. remain in the EU as mere undemocratic regions of the sclerotic, socialist, undemocratic EU
    C. No other option just A and B or get lost mate if you are one of the 17.2 million.

    I see that tax to death Hammond calls it the PM’s deal thus distancing himself from it already.

    The alternative is a new Tory leader with some vision, a clean real Brexit, real democracy, lower taxes, a bonfire of red tape, cheap energy, increasing prosperity and a huge victor for the real low tax a heart Conservatives. Not the no nation fake, anti-democratic, tax to death, lefty frauds like T May, Hammond, Cameron, Osborne, Clarke X 2, Liddington, Hunt and the rest.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      Mind you we know from the voting on the Climate Change Act, ten year back, that they are nearly all bonkers.

      • L Jones
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

        Thank you, LL. If Dr Redwood would allow ”up votes” then I wouldn’t need to put my appreciation into words!

  4. jerry
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:20 am | Permalink

    I see that the BBC are reporting; “A cross-party group of MPs will use next month’s landmark Brexit vote to try to ensure the UK cannot leave the EU without a deal.”.

    The only trouble there is, of course, there is no such thing as a ‘no deal Brexit’ even should the UK leave on WTO rules, that is still a deal the EU & UK will have to abide by, unless the one or both parties plan to pull out of the jurisdiction of the WTO too…

    Then some MPs wonder why the public have so little faith in their abilities!

    • Renton
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      Do please stop peddling this myth. The WTO is not a deal – the WTO is the ABSENCE of a deal. No country in the whole wide world trades on WTO terms alone, no country would because it gives no privileges at all. Every country has and needs deals on top of the WTO. So anyone who tells you we can trade fine under the WTO is telling you a very grave untruth

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        The WTO treaties are far more of a ‘deal’ than the empty “jam tomorrow” promises being paraded by Theresa May as a ‘deal’. Apparently during her flight she went as far as telling journalists she had got a ‘good trade deal’, which raised eyebrows because even journalists are beginning to work out that in reality she has got no ‘trade deal’ at all, that is beyond an agreement for an oxymoronic ‘status quo’ or ‘standstill’ transition period during which nothing will change and so trade can continue as now.

        • Chris
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

          May cannot depart from her stock replies, even when thos replies patently untrue to any person of sound reasoning ability.

      • Edward2
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

        Have you ever exported or imported Renton?
        I have.
        WTO rules support over 90% of world trade and all our non EU current trade which is 60% of our total export trade.
        Seems to work OK over the last few decades in my experience.
        Most nations develop bi lateral trading arrangements but they are based on WTO rules.
        Do some checking and calm down.

        • Helena
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:27 am | Permalink

          Edward, zero per cent of our non EU current trade is done on WTO rules. Zero. All of it done on the basis of the EU’s external trade deals. We lose every single clause of those trade deals on Brexit day. They continue only if Dr Fox gets other countries to agree to roll them over. So far, less than 4 months from Brexit day, the number of countries that have agreed is zero

          • Edward2
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 7:55 am | Permalink

            That is stupid argument.
            We cannot sign any new agreements until after we have left.

            We trade using WTO rules for the majority of our current trade.
            Whether through our EU membership or agreements we have entered into.

          • Denis Cooper
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 11:36 am | Permalink

            Helena, that is simply not correct.

        • hans christian ivers
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          Edward 2.

          Helena is right.
          46 % of our goods trade in exports is done with the Eu and 16 to 17% is done under trade agreements under the trade deals with the Eu.

          Check your facts

          • Edward2
            Posted December 2, 2018 at 1:22 am | Permalink

            41% actually and fallen fron 52%
            Check your own.

      • jerry
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

        @Renton; What utter nonsense. Do please stop peddling your Remain myths!…

        “Every country has and needs deals on top of the WTO.”

        The UK and EU27 already trade internationally outside of formal EU negotiated trade deals! Many countries still do not have such trade ‘deals’, for example CETA (Canada) has still not come into effect (although some aspects are being provisionally applied), whilst TTIP (USA) has been abandoned, the EU does not have functioning trade deals with other countries either, China, Australia, India, much of Africa, almost all of South America, or Russia.

      • libertarian
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:50 pm | Permalink


        What would you know about trade? Not a lot it seems . Who cares if a country has ALL of its trade agreements wholly in WTO? Typical ignorant nonsense. Your glorious EU has a trade agreement with Morocco but it trades totally under WTO terms with its 2 current biggest markets USA and China. Once the UK leaves then the 3 biggest markets of the EU will all be under WTO terms

        • Newmania
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 8:25 am | Permalink

          That is not the case. There are many complex trade agreements between the EU and the USA. WTO ( which is entirely powerless anyway) is not eh basis on which any economy in the world operates barring one in Africa somewhere , I forget the place
          90% of our trade is facilitated by EU treaties , the UK previously had its own but these are long lapsed and in any case related to a much simpler and slower world

          • Edward2
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 10:29 am | Permalink

            You are wrong NM
            The basis for trade by USA and China with the EU is the WTO schedules and rules which members agree to use.
            90% of world trade carries on via WTO rules.
            Of course nations may agree additional bi lateral agreements if they want to but that doesn’t alter the original basis to trade.

          • libertarian
            Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:08 pm | Permalink



            As a fan boy go and read the EU commission website on its trade with the USA. It states categorically that they trade under WTO rules

          • libertarian
            Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

            Newmania , Renton and others

            From the WTO website

            #WTO reports that 98% of all global mercantile trade, amounting to $17.4 trillion, was carried out under WTO terms in 2017 alone.

      • Colin Hart
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:34 pm | Permalink

        Is it not a fact that the EU and the US trade under WTO rules and have no other arrangements?

        • Newmania
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

          No it is a load of rubbish aimed at the gullible. A bit like the suggestion that Turkey will be joining , that an EU army is gestating or that millions of Syrians are headed our way and that £350m will be spent on the NHS from a pot of free Brexit money

          That sort of thing

          • Edward2
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

            You need to read the Five Presidents Report Newmania.
            I’m not particularly worried about their plans but don’t go around denying that all the ambitions of the EU do not exist.
            As for the £350 million for the NHS, the government has already prematurely given an increase of over that amount to the NHS.

          • libertarian
            Posted December 2, 2018 at 8:15 pm | Permalink


            Wrong the EU commission website lists 24 countries that the EU trades with under WTO terms

            The two biggest are USA and China

            Anyone would think you didn’t know what you were voting for

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:39 am | Permalink

      It is too late now, because the language of the debate has long become fixed along unhelpful lines, but ideally there should always have been a clear distinction made between leaving without any special trade deal, defaulting to the basic WTO treaties which already exist, and leaving without any deal on anything at all. Similarly it was stupid to agree that everything should be lumped together in one portmanteau deal, so that for example if we cannot come to an agreement on trade then we will also have no agreement on the exchange of information to help prevent people here and in the UK being slaughtered by terrorists. As I recall it was Theresa May’s bright idea that we should offer continued co-operation on security in part exchange for a trade deal, just as it was her bright idea that we should treat the EU citizens already settled here as bargaining chips.

      • Dominic Johnson
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

        For what reason would the UK conscript it’s sons and send them to die in defence of a country that refuses to trade with us?

        All or nothing is a simple statement of fact

        • Denis Cooper
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

          Not at all; we have a wide variety of treaty arrangements with other countries around the world, and we do not usually agree that all the different treaties we have made with a particular country should be consolidated into a single portmanteau treaty.

    • Peter
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:09 am | Permalink

      Fox and Leadsom have now given their support for the Agreement. So much for the pizza five.

      It is difficult to know what will happen next. It is unusual for Mr. Redwood to speculate on how it will all play out.

      While I would like a resounding defeat following by implementation of WTO exit, I suspect all sorts of spoiling actions will prevent this.

      • percy openshaw
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

        The “pizza five” should be called the pigeon pie quintet, gobbled up by the odious Mrs May, who has thrown herself eagerly into the maw of Juncker. They are therefore less than nothing now, the fodder of food, the prey of prey, digested into so much political ordure. I pray to God that parliament prevents us from following them.

    • Dennis
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:21 am | Permalink

      The EU won’t agree to any deal that allows a clean Brexit. Their only deal is to keep the UK subservient. Therefore “no deal is the best deal”.

      • gordon
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

        not just best but only!

      • Jagman84
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

        We do not need their permission to leave. However, May’s ‘deal’ will give them that ability. Something that she wished for, from the outset of the surrender talks.

    • rick hamilton
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      It’s time we had a referendum on the BBC. It has been relentlessly anti-Brexit since the vote. BBC World TV is now peddling a pathetically childish set of cartoons purporting to explain ‘jargon’ . Terms like ‘cliff edge’, ‘crash out’ and -wait for it- ‘have your cake and eat it’ apparently are considered beyond the comprehension of its global audience.

      Their news and comment coverage should be privatised and taken out of the licence fee. Why should we be forced to pay for the broadcast arm of the Guardian.

      • A.Sedgwick
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

        a vote winner

        • Bob
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:22 pm | Permalink

          Since you mention it, UKIP would abolish the BBC Licence together with the following:
          • Inheritance Tax
          • HS2
          • Stamp Duty
          • Foreign Aid
          • EU membership
          • Tuition Fees for STEM subjects

          By the way, the BBC are busily campaign to remove free TV Licences for the over 75s.

          • jerry
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 7:12 am | Permalink

            @Bob; UKIP won’t be abolishing anything, any time soon, other than its self.

            They are loosing members and key officials quicker than rats leave a sinking ship! They lost another MEP this week when Patrick O’Flynn joined the SDP (now a very eurosceptic centrist party), even Mr Farage is deeply unhappy with the current UKIP leadership, calling on him to be sacked! Déjà vu…

      • percy openshaw
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

        Very well said. It is the propaganda arm of our self-appointed ideological elite, which runs all government and supranational institutions from the EU to the UN. This same elite, which has spent decades quietly undermining western society, is now poised for the kill. Unless we fight back and do so victoriously, it really is moment when decline turns into fall.

        • L Jones
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

          Don’t keep calling them ”elite”. It only reinforces their own inflated opinion of themselves.

          They are NOT ”elite”!

      • jerry
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

        @rick hamilton; Nice anti rant BBC, trouble is it is not just the BBC, ITN, Ch4 & Sky News is as bad, so are the European and US owned MSM available Free to Air, via subscription or as a IPTV stream here in the UK – the only media outlet that doesn’t seem to be biased towards the EU is RT…

    • oldwulf
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

      “MPs ………to try to ensure the UK cannot leave the UK without a deal”.
      What on earth is wrong with these people ?
      With that sort of negotiating position, the UK will be at the mercy of the EU.
      We have always had a walk away position – now is the time to use it ….. PLEASE.

      • Jagman84
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

        They are the EU’s people. Tony Blair’s dilution of the Treason Act was designed for times like this….

    • Mockbeggar
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:35 am | Permalink

      Mr Redwood and his colleagues need to work hard over the next few days and weeks to persuade fellow MPs to realise that an Initial WTO deal followed quickly by a Canada plus FTA is our best course.

      Michael Portillo was good on This Week last night in refuting the pejorative expressions such as ‘Crash out’ by the dreadful Jess Phillips. Danny Finklestein used them again this morning at the dog end of Today on Radio 4 just now but,sadly, was not refuted by Charles Moore who was arguing the case for WTO.

      • Trondon
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

        Canada plus what? You are just spouting silly slogans. As for doing it quickly, forget it. Ten years minimum to negotiate a trade deal. Britain will be third world by then as every penny of inward investment moves to the EU 2 7 – that is happening right now. Get real matey

        • Jagman84
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

          The useful idiots are out in force, I see. Is that why the German economy had negative growth in the last quarter? Posting nonsense like that does not make it true.

        • jerry
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

          @Trondon; “[people] are just spouting silly slogans”

          Oh the irony, whilst I agree Canada ++ type deals are pie in the sky (at least in partnership with the EU27) you then launch into a sloganised anti Brexit rant, as if the UK does not already do significant international trade that does not rely on our EU membership/deals or that we could not do such business.

        • libertarian
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:55 pm | Permalink


          Suggest you do some basic research before spouting drivel. EU trade deals take on average 12 years to complete , outside of the EU the average trade deal is done in 14 months

          The UK currently has highest FDI figures in the world and miles more than any EU country

          Even the Pro Remain Economist knows that

    • Hope
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      Well said and very true. Nor should the U.K. be forced to ask for permission to leave!

      In the last two world wars Millions of people died and were maimed to preserve our independent way of life. May is proposing to give this away for nothing and without challenge whatsoever! We learn she asked for the customs union, she asked for the extension, she asked for the extension to the extension. All as a vassal state! What did these brave men die for?

      There is no reason why the UK could not negotiate a trade deal with the EU from 30/03/2019 as a self governing independent nation, not a vassal state with a gun to our heads! Today we read Raab co firming it was May who refused to ask for an end date in the backstop! They are traitors and acting against our national interest. What on earth is May and Hammond thinking.

      Security minister talking rot yesterday. Last week it was confirmed by the inspectorate that there are no secure borders, this while in the EU. May as HS and PM responsible. May talk s about immigration, she was HS for six years when immigration wa at historic highs. Her policy the opposite! Ow under UN migration pact she wants illegal im i grants made legal! She lost over two hundred thousand, Rudd lost 56,000 this year alone! Does anyone believe or trust May on immigration, No.

      MPs do your duty and oust May it is in our national interest. We need to be safe secure, sovereign and independent nation.

      Oust Leadsom and Fox. Both have now confirmed you cannot believe a word they say, they lack conviction, honour and integrity in their deed to leave the EU

    • Mark
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:07 am | Permalink

      My concern is that May will simply treat it as endorsement of her deal, which she will claim is the only deal that can fulfil “no deal”. Hopefully this back door way of conceding to May will be thrown out.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      Jerry, The term “No deal” should not exist because it is meaningless. What most people appear to mean is “no trade deal” with the EU, which is perfectly possible. A clearer phrase is “the WTO deal” which I prefer. People should define what they mean, of course, to make sense.

      Much of the DWA seems to me to include technical agreements such as mutual recognition of professional qualifications. Few would dispute the usefulness of such agreements. However, they could be agreed separately on a case by case basis, over time, just as we agree them with other non-EU nations.

      And that’s the point. We should have just walked away from the EU, giving them 12 months diplomatic notice. So no trade deal, and no leaving deal. Just the announcement of our independence. Then arranged these minor deals just as we would with non-EU nations.

      • L Jones
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:51 pm | Permalink

        It all sounds so rational, NickC, and, of course, it is.
        The words ”no deal” have been used for so long now that people really believe that’s what it is. If the Leave campaign hadn’t rested on its laurels since the referendum, then perhaps it would have been ready to counter such absurd misnomers and nip them in the bud.
        Now the Remain campaign is spreading tripe and tosh left, right and centre and Leave is even using their silly labels!
        People are being bamboozled – as if there is nothing else but trade to worry about. But many of us haven’t lost sight of the fact that this is mainly about self-governance and independence of foreign rule, and SOVEREIGNTY.

        People should be reminded constantly of what it says at the EU visitor centre:
        ”National sovereignty is the root cause of the most crying evils of our times….The only final remedy for this evil is the federal union of the peoples.”

    • David in Kent
      Posted December 3, 2018 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      Of course WTO is a ‘deal’ and a better one than the May proposal. It is after all the basis on which we trade with the US, our biggest customer.

  5. Ron Olden
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:25 am | Permalink

    I’m more concerned about this amendment to the motion which is being cooked up by traitorous Tory, Lib Dem, Labour, SNP etc etc MPs prohibiting us from leaving the EU without a ‘deal’.

    Whether that’s procedurally permissible or not Bercow might well still allow it, and if he does, it’s likely to pass.

    But if any Tory MP with the possible exception of Ken Clarke, who voted against triggering Article 50 in the first place, supports it they should be deselected forthwith.

    It’s one thing to vote against triggering Article 50 or against any ‘deal’. The Referendum was ‘advisory’ and MPs have a duty to us to do what they think is right. But to have voted to trigger Article 50 and then at the last minute put in place a motion preventing us leaving without a ‘deal’ if no acceptable one is forthcoming, is downright traitorous to the Nation.

    It would leave us wholly at the mercy of the EU as to what ‘deal’ they impose, whether we leave or stay, and even to impose new terms on us staying in.

    As it happens if the amendment is passed, it is of no effect in law. But I doubt of that will be the ultimate effect of it.

  6. Mick
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:26 am | Permalink
    It’s when you get Brexiteers like Mr Fox coming out in favour of Mrs May deal that the British people get totally confused, I’m afraid your going to have to back it or risk there going to be another referendum we’re I’m afraid the voter will be conned into staying in the Eu for good , the choice is yours along with all the other mps but you have to bare this in mind we the public will never get the chance to vote on coming out again for a very long time, so put your country first vote for the deal and get us out and sort out the formalities at a later date you know it makes sense

    • Roy Grainger
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:35 am | Permalink

      It is something of a paradox but if there is another referendum then almost by definition we can refuse to accept the result of it. Such a second referendum might produce a Remain outcome but that would not settle the matter. Remember that a large majority of constituencies voted Leave – in the medium-term a new populist anti-EU party would find many supporters – leaving the EU ultimately might require a parliamentary majority to do so but that is not, ultimately, an impossible thing to achieve if the Conservatives sell-out the country as they are currently doing.

      • John C.
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

        I wish people would not talk about another referendum without making clear what choice they suppose it would offer.I can think of 3 or4 possible permutations.

    • Beecee
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:08 am | Permalink


      Mr Fox and Mrs Leadsom are the latest examples of ministerial status trumping principles and belief.

      What a shoddy lot our government are.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

        Well, I had no faith in either, or for that matter Michael Gove.

        Andrea Leadsom wanted to reform the EU from within:

        which was never going to happen even if the UK ever had a government which really wanted it to happen and pressed hard for it.

    • oldtimer
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:16 am | Permalink

      The is the ministerial payroll vote voting for its ministerial pay packet. He is not alone. Gove, Truss and Leadsome have also said they will vote for this dud deal.

      At least there are some MPs who have had the guts to resign from ministerial office and not compromise what they say they believe in and stand for. I think the count is now in double figueres

      • rose
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        If all the Brexiteers resign who will speak for Brexit in the aftermath of the vote?

    • Al
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      The problem with voting for the deal is that the deal does lock us into the EU with no option to leave, not vote, and no Article 50. Effectively voting it in does mean staying in the EU for good.

      If it is not signed, we do effectively have a chance to vote on coming out again, depending on which MPs get voted in at the next General Election.

    • Captain Peacock
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:57 am | Permalink

      I said a few days ago that these so called rebels in the Tory party are all BS. They pretend to be against the sell out by when it comes down to the wire they will all vote for it. 17.4 million voted to leave this is not leaving May was never going to give a clean Brexit. She should have been replaced after the disastrous last election is there anything she has done right?

      • Anonymous
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:36 pm | Permalink


    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      No way the deal is appalling and far, far worse than just leaving.

      I noted that when Fox was asked if he would definitely vote for the deal he avoided the question. He should resign now and vote against if he is sensible.

    • Helen Smith
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      Once this treaty is signed there are no formalities to sort out, we will be subject to the whims of the EU, we won’t be able to leave unless they agree, meanwhile they can do all kinds of damage to our economy.

      This is what they meant by we cannot be allowed to prosper by leaving the EU.

      The astute will have deduced from that statement that the EU knows darn well that by leaving we will prosper.

      This agreement cannot be allowed to become a treaty.

      • Richard
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

        Helen..where do you get this stuff from? They never said that we cannot be allowed to prosper..what they said was that UK through it’s new relationship with the EU cannot be allowed to take unfair advantage of the bloc through it’s new trade dealings with them. The EU has to be like this otherwise they would have other countries like Italy and Greece leaving and then starting up new cherry picking deals with them with no rules. The Eu would fall apart.

        • NickC
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

          Richard, What is “unfair” about developing more sensible rules than the EU has? Any independent nation cherrypicks the best outcomes for itself. It is ridiculous to be a masochist and deliberately choose bad outcomes for the UK. Why do you want the EU to strangle our enterprise?

          • hans christian ivers
            Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:02 pm | Permalink


            The Eu has not strangled any enterprise the smaller countrie of the Eu that really have enterprise have thrived . Lux, DK, SWE, Holl, Slo, Austria and so on

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

      Mick, It is you who appears to be totally confused. The DWA is not the deal to get us out of the EU. And it is not intended to be. Try reading the DWA itself, rather than reading newspapers about it. The DWA is a potential treaty to cover the so-called “transition” only. The “deal” to cover our future relationship does not exist yet.

    • JoolsB
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

      Mick – May’s surrender document does anything but get us out of the EU. We could be still tied to it for decades if she gets her way. Don’t be influenced by so called Brexiteers like Fox, Leadsome and Gove. They have merely proved that they are enjoying their ministerial positions far too much to give a fig about delivering what we voted for.

    • Jagman84
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

      Backing this deal is worse than a 2nd referendum. Despite the fake opinion polls, it would likely produce a vote even more in favour of Leave than before. If only to punish the treachery of politicians wishing to deliver us into permanent EU servitude. We would be in the same position as post the true (2016) ‘people’s referendum’.

  7. David in Kent
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    I’m concerned that while we are being told the May agreement will be defeated by 170 votes it will, after a lot of arm twisting, lose by only 50 votes. That will be presented as a triumph and, after a few cosmetic changes, pass on the second or third attempt.
    Your solution, leaving on WTO terms with immediate discussion of an FTA, is far preferable but you are going to have to work hard to get it.

    • Butties
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      Writing a letter to the Chair of the 22 committee is not hard work David in Kent.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

      David in Kent, You are exactly right. I am very sceptical of the complacent Leave guess that the DWA will be defeated in the HoC. The arithmetic (550 Remain MPs vs about 100 Leave MPs) does not bode well for Leave. And we have been here before. With respect to JR, he has put forward optimistic Leave scenarios in the past, yet the Remain juggernaut has just kept rolling on. Why is this time different?

    • JoolsB
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

      It’s called damage limitation. “Oh look, they told us we would lose by 170 when in fact it was only 50 – obviously more liked our deal than was thought” There is no level to which May will not stoop to get her surrender agreement through.

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    Any MP thinking of voting for May’s dreadful deal should read her open letter of lies to the nation as below. Then consider if they really do want to bury the Tory party, revive UKIP and suffer Corbyn/Mc Donnall/SNP. Surely after that the sentient ones will change their minds and rapidly evict this appalling and fraudulent PM?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      So Carney and the BoE/Treasury are defended by Liam Fox on Radio 4 just now. Apparently we foolishly misunderstood the difference between predictions and scenarios.

      as in:- Scenarios (political) A blatant lie or exaggeration to scare of frighten people and to try to gain a political advantage. Often these demean the people or organisations who produced them. Can and do frequently back fire.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:12 am | Permalink

        Often carried out at taxpayer’s expense and then used to deceive the very people who are paying for it.

    • Cerberus
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Watch her lie by omission and give incoherent, incomprehensible responses to the Commons Liaison Committee yesterday. The first 10 and last 30 mins are the best.

      The public mood on QT last night was shifting towards a WTO deal & re-negotiate when out. Our own parliament-approved backstop. Delicious.

    • Chris Maughan
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      I am no fan of Mrs May or her “deal”, however, she is trying to find a solution which will appeal to the majority (both in Parliament and in the electorate). It is the only way to gain a consensus and support. A laudable but extremely challenging objective.
      However, in doing so, she has created a terrible mess which is open to attack by just about everyone. She has changed her mind numerous times without explanation giving the impression that she has been lying, but maybe she hasn’t?
      The outcome I fear is a second referendum. The propaganda from the vst majority of the Media for the last 2 years will have had a huge impact on those who pay shallow attention to Brexit (i.e. the majority of the public) and I believe a significant number will have been hook-winked into changing their minds to Remain.
      Taking my extended family as an example, 7 out of 8 voted Leave. I’m the only one who has followed events closely since. Many of the others wouldn’t have a clue about the negative impacts of Mrs Mays “deal”. That’s what we are up against if there is a second referendum.

      • Stred
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 9:51 am | Permalink

        Same with mine.

    • G Wilson
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:21 am | Permalink

      May is relying on the threat of a Corbyn government to get the Tories through the next election.

      But she will inadvertently prove Corbyn is no threat, if she proves we are only allowed to do what the EU says. If she can’t turn Britain into a non-EU country, then Labour can’t turn Britain into Venezuela. It’s safe to vote Labour to punish the Tories for refusing to carry out our instruction given in the referendum. Corbyn might even get us out, the left hates the EU!

      I think the Tories are going to be in for a bad shock at the next election.

    • rose
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

      I notice even Cabinet ministers are referring to the DWA as “The Prime Minister’s Deal”, not as “Government Policy”. I take great heart from this, whatever they go on to say about it.

      • L Jones
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

        And they are speaking as though she has presidential powers, instead of those of simply PM. That’s how she acts.
        Didn’t T Blair do the same?

        • rose
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

          Well, the broadcasters do, always referring to “No 10”, not “the Cabinet”. It is “No 10 wants the PM to do this” and “No 10 thinks that.”

          No, I mean the government is dissociating itself from a rogue PM in referring to “the PM’s Deal”. They are getting ready to sack her.

  9. eeyore
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:39 am | Permalink

    For two years Britain has suffered the opposite of leadership. Those who should have offered hope and confidence have done all they could to instil doubt, darken counsel and destroy morale.

    It is clear there has been a conscious and deliberate policy of under-preparation for No Deal. The country will pay the price and will look for someone to blame. I hope that when Brexiteers finally take charge, as they undoubtedly will and must if Conservative MPs wish to save their seats, they will remember that magnanimity in victory is the British way.

    So a peerage and Garter for Mrs May, a £100 Harrods voucher for Mr Hammond and the life governorship of Tristan da Cunha for Mr Olly Robbins.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

      Hopefully May will just give up retire and just stay in Argentina.

      • A.Sedgwick
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

        Falklands would be better.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

      Eeyore, The clique of May-Robbins-Hammond-Carney has a lot to answer for. My magnanimity would stretch to a TV in their prison cells.

      We saw how rotten the HoC was during the expenses scandal. That was just peculation. Now we see how rotten MPs are politically as they snatch our decision to Leave off us. Remaining in the EU under Theresa May’s deal, like David Cameron’s deal before it, means there is no point to Westminster.

    • Jagman84
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

      Olly Robbins would be applying to join the EU, even before his suitcase was unpacked!

  10. Javelin
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    I can’t recall a bigger shambles in British history.

    Even the expeditionary party had Dunkirk.

    May has no plan B.

    • Beecee
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Her plan B is to trounce Mr Corbyn in the head to head on TV, then arrive for the Commons vote triumphant, with the cheers of her honourable friends resounding behind her.

      What , however, this debate has anything to do the the EU Withdrawal Agreement has passed me by!

      The debate will of course be on BBC

      • A.Sedgwick
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

        Just the Establishment at work.

        • rose
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

          They are distracting us all with this trivial television programme when they should be scrutinising the details of this withdrawal agreement and making it plain the political declaration is not a trade agreement.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      I am sure she does, but she just not tell us what it is. Doubtless, given that it is Theresa May, her plan B will be just as damaging and badly thought out or even worse.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      It’s called outright treachery and it has been going on for well over forty years, except now, the wider public can see it being played out before their very eyes. Those who would chain us to the EU can’t hide their underhanded dealings any longer.

      To teach them all a lesson, we ‘homeless voters’ just need a new Eurosceptic party where we can place our votes and thereby clear out the Westminster stables once and for all.


    • Mark B
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      May has no plan B.

      Which is deliberate.

      Can’t have a ‘Cliff Edge’ is there is a, Plan B.

    • Hope
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      Lord King stated on TV a little while ago that the govt and civil,service should have publicly made clear what our fall back position was because we cannot control the other party in negotiation. If the UK did not agree with the terms it should leave on the fall back position. We all voted to leave on, WTO terms and try to get a trade agreement. May has deliberately failed to get a trade deal and is falsely calling her withdrawal,agreement the deal. The two are distinct. No one, in the country ever never voted for a Withdrawal Agreement. MPs,stood to be elected on manifestos to leave the EU and leave customs union and single market. MPs did vote to leave the EU MPs did vote to leave the customs union and single market. What part does May not understand? MPs are now trying to defy electoral democracy and defy the electorate. If this continues those MPs should be ousted as the way our democracy works has been dispensed with by MPs.

      May has stated there is no plan B or publicly willing to say what the other option is at this late date. Undoubtedly she one and it is her MO to produce her plan at the last moment not give anyone enough time to read or digest the implications of it. May is underhand and a liar. That is clear to all at this stage.

  11. Prigger
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    Mrs May will have considered all this weeks ago.
    She has always played for time, delay. Whatever course will delay the most, she will choose.
    I cannot know enough of the insides of The House whether it will allow such tomfoolery.
    Whether it is possible for the whole of Parliament to place a vote of no-confidence in her. What that would event.
    She is Uncertainty.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      Prigger, I believe that Mrs May is about 60% likely to win the DWA vote because most of the HoC is Remain. However if she doesn’t (c40% likely) she will opt for a second referendum with a rigged ‘heads you Remain, tails you Remain’ question. Leave MPs have had their chances over the last two years but fluffed it every time. I hope it is different this time, but I can see no reason why it should be.

  12. DUNCAN
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    It is damning of the seditious Tory hierarchy that we have to rely on Marxist Labour to reassert British sovereignty and protect our democracy.

    I want to see this PM weeping as she leaves No.10. I recall the treachery of MT’s political assassination by the EU and its fanatics that now reside in the Commons.

    We want our revenge against the Clarke’s of this world.

    If the WA is defeated, May must then be challenged and defeated. Elect a Eurosceptic leader, purge the party ala Labour and go to the country on the platform of leaving the EU

    • Largehosier
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      I agree that is exactly what is needed!

    • Tad Davison
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      Even if there is no immediate ‘official’ challenge to May’s leadership by way of a no-confidence vote, the Eurosceptics can be far more scathing in their criticism of her. The people of this nation need to know their anger is matched by the ones they send to parliament. Calm, measured tones don’t quite send the same message. We need to be scathing in our condemnation of Theresa May and call out this treachery. Europhiles have been getting away with this subterfuge for far too long and continue to laugh at us. We need to be rid of them once and for all!


    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

      May has behaved appallingly and richly deserves an ignominious eviction from number 10, taking Hammond & Carney with her. She is clearly dishonest, cannot be trusted and many would probably describe her as a fraud and a lying traitor.

      Not only that but she is an electoral liability and all her other non Brexit policies are idiotic and not remotely Conservative either. If she remains the Tories will be in a far worse place than when John ERM Major buried them last time for three plus terms. No change no chance.

    • JoolsB
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

      Agree but they went to the country last time on a ticket of leaving the EU and look what happened. Why should anyone believe them a second time? The Tories are finished if they don’t deliver the Brexit 17.4 million people voted for and sadly that is looking increasingly unlikely.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

      Duncan said: “I want to see this PM weeping as she leaves No.10”. Mrs May has neither the sense nor the sensibility of Mrs Thatcher.

      • Polonius
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

        Psychopaths don’t cry.

  13. Caterpillar
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    No deal (aka Brexit) preparation should have been started 2 years ago. Even now it seems the Government is delaying inorder to pressurise MPs and public into a no choice support of the withdrawal agreement. The PM needs to stop with her stubbornness and grow up, she needs to recognise that she (and others) continue to destroy democracy and trust of UK institutions. She need to get the country back on track.

    • NickC
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

      Caterpillar, It is not Theresa May’s “stubbornness”, she has planned this every step of the way – from signing up to closer ties with the EU on defence and security, to the Kit-Kat tapes, to the hoodwinking of her own Ministers about the second White Paper, to Chequers, to the DWA. She is the PM; she authorised it all.

    • L Jones
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps those are not her own ”needs” at all, Caterpillar. Perhaps her string-pullers have too tight a hold now for her to display any free will.
      Or perhaps she’s just out of her depth, and has been for a long time, allowing the Oilies to manipulate and machinate to their hearts’ content.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      Preparation should have been started by Cameron’s government and the civil service as soon as they had decided to call the referendum. So more like three years back. It was gross negligence for him, the civil service and Osborne not to have prepared for the (roughly equally likely) leave outcome. Brexit means no Brexit May is clearly even more culpable.

      A general in wartime committing the same negligence might well have been executed.

  14. matthu
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    Let’s hope you are right, John.

    But that still leaves 220 so-called conservative MPs who think it is perfectly acceptable to risk binding their country into this sort of straight-jacket agreement in perpetuity.

    Is this the sort of party to stake the future of the UK on?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      Indeed 220 Tory MPs all prepared to bind us into an appalling and very expensive straight-jacket without even an escape clause. Also it seems prepared to blatantly lie to us and parliament about the terms and effect of the deal.

      Ditch the deal and ditch May, Hammond and the rest of them before we get Corbyn.

    • Mark B
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      Over 100 of those are already in the bag as they would have to resign their government positions if they wanted to do so.

      This is all up to Labour. The SNP and others have been bought off.

  15. oldtimer
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:01 am | Permalink

    For me it is not over until the HoC has voted against the May deal. This, I hope, is what MPs will do. It is a dud deal.

    On past form and statements the EU will not discuss future FTA until the UK has left. It is time UK negotiators listened.

  16. Roy Grainger
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    I note in your analysis John you tentatively assume no MPs will abstain. In practice I imagine lots will and that will make the margin of defeat smaller. I assume then the EU may offer some tiny concessions (they will already have them prepared because they know about negotiation) and then there will be a second vote. At that point the abstainers may well support May – I think there is still a way her deal passes.

    At that point you really need to get organised and depose her because the thought of her negotiating the future agreement is alarming – for example the EU will insist on sequencing the talks so that it is 1) Fishing followed only after agreement by 2) Trade.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:28 am | Permalink


      My thoughts entirely, although how any MP can abstain on such a huge vote defies logic.

      If Mrs May does lose the vote then she should go, or be pushed.

      NOTHING IS AGREED UNTIL EVERYTHING IS AGREED used to be the often quoted strap line.
      So why are we even talking about holding a vote, when so many major areas still need to be agreed.
      No one said trade, border controls, agriculture, fishing, tariffs, regulation enforcement, and a host of other important areas would be excluded and treated separately.

      Pathetic absolutely pathetic, who in their right mind would sign up to this and then trust the EU to deliver on anything that would be to our benefit.

    • Student
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      I agree. The Brexiteers need to get together in a room and select one person and one policy that they can get behind and back. Their fragmented approach thus far is part of the reason why May is able to continue even after such a disastrous tenure as PM.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      With Mrs May going to Argentina I am concerned about the fate of the Falklands, and wouldn’t be surprised to see her claiming a negotiating success, where we give them the Falklands and a shed load of money at the same time, and when asked ‘why did the sovereignty of the Falklands suddenly become an issue?’ Her reply will be that if hadn’t given them the Falklands, they would have demanded South Georgia as well.

  17. Dave Andrews
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    Have the vote – we are obliged to the EU to do this.
    It will be summarily defeated and undeniably dead.
    We then face a degree of turmoil in facing sudden exit on WTO terms.

    We can do better than that.

    Offer the EU a temporary arrangement where we mutually agree to sustain barrier free trade whilst a permanent deal can be drawn up. Goods that originate outside of the UK/EU area to be subject to customs though to avoid undermining tariff barriers.

    The advantages are no need to put in a hard border in Ireland, or the English Channel or North Sea for that matter. Everyone can continue trading pretty much as they do now with no worries about a “cliff edge”.

    Leavers are happy because we leave the EU. Remainers are happy because economic uncertainty is eliminated. EU countries are happy because they avoid damage to their trade. What’s not to like?

  18. BrexiteerwivMusket
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    Every one of us who has worked always longed for a direct order from a boss.
    “Do this one thing!”
    We never really got an order like that.
    She did.
    Sack her.

  19. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    Well to keep it short and sweet, all I can say to that is Bally Hurray! Let’s get out and let’s roll our sleeves up and get on with the job like only Joe Bloggs can.

    • Sue Doughty
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

      Well said, I agree.

  20. Al
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    I believe all it would take for a majority to pass it is to enable unilateral exit from the backstop.

    Not a full redraft.

  21. Lifelogic
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:12 am | Permalink
  22. Mark B
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    It’s all a question of time. And we have wasted over 2 years worth.

    I sincerely hope that our kind host is correct, because if he is not, he knows full well what will happen at the next GE. I for example, have never forgotten the; “Green shoots of recovery.” from the then Chancellor, Norman Lamont. Think about that ?

    Off topic but still EU related.

    I see Germany has called on, President Macron to surrender France’s seat on the Security Council at the UN. President Macron has been very vocal about further EU integration, seeing Chancellor Merkel and Germany weakened, he has ceased the opportunity to wrestle the EU driving wheel but, those clever, Bismarkian German’s are not going to let go now they finally have control over all Europe.

    Fun times ahead. Only this time, can we now please learn the lessons of 100 years ago and leave them all too it ?


  23. Richard1
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    What if Labour decide to abstain as a way of futur obfuscating their position?

  24. Lifelogic
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    Let’s focus on the deal, May tells MPs.

    We if they do they will see it is appalling, even worse than remain, a trap, a con and a non-Brexit Brexit. It offers almost none of the things that May claims that it offers. We would be paying a huge fee for nothing of any real value at all and entering an elephant trap with no exit clause. The only positives are in the non binding waffle pages and they are not very positive anyway.

    Is Theresa May really too dim to see this or is she just a total fraud trying to damage the UK as much as she can?

    I can see no other sensible explanations.

  25. Nigl
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    According to the DT Theresa May is accusing the Labour Party of the likelihood of a No Deal.

    She is in total denial, she should try looking in a mirror. Also Dr Fox is telling his MPs to do the right thing for the country. Again totally denying that their deal is not good for us and not what they promised us.

  26. FranzB
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Mrs May knows full well she will lose the vote which she is unlikely to be cancelled at this late stage, so right now she is just appealing to the public over the heads of politicians for what she is planning next? maybe a GE? One thing for sure is that the Withdrawal document will not be reopened by the EU side as some people are suggesting. There is no will on the EU side for that not even if they had the time because with the EU Parliament elections coming up fast in May they will be only concerned with the clean out of all redundant MEP’s and making plans for the future- as they would see it.

    Then as suggested by some, talks between the two sides will have to be started for a FTA, but this is all a misconception, there are no ‘two sides’ here, there is the EU and there is the UK that is leaving in March, and since there will be no withdrawal treaty in place then there cannot be fresh talks about a future relationship. So we are heading for disruption here, disruption on a grand scale as pointed out by the BoE Governor. For a start Cargo trade that was previously Lo-Lo and Ro-Ro through Dover/Calais will have to be switched to containers Felixstowe/Antwerp and Rotterdam- this will be necessary to allow for customs checks , JIT will become a thing of the past- but this is only the start. We heard Junker last week when he said the blame for all of this lies with the British side, only the British so thing is the EU is unlikely to enter into any meaningful discussion with the UK until the UK politics infighting and bad feelings about Europe is cleaned up, otherwise there will never be peace and harmony in the camp as they would see it. Nothing will happen now until the UK anti EU types retire and take a back seat and that’s the way, and so in this case as with others- politics trumps economy

  27. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    I don’t want to be accused of producing a long well-reasoned post supported by actual hard evidence, which apparently is a crime on this blog, so I will merely assert:

    1. I’m not that bothered with quickly getting a free trade deal with the EU, or indeed with any other part of the world. Just as the overall economic impact of the EU Single Market is vastly overstated so too is the economic impact of such free trade deals.

    2. As I said a year ago, I am bothered with sorting out just the technical and practical aspects of trade with the EU on the terms of the existing WTO treaties so there can be a smooth and orderly change-over on March 29th 2019.

    3. If you believe the German government, rather than our own, defaulting to WTO terms would cost the UK just 1.7% of GDP over the long term, which is in the same kind of range as the likely impact of the EU membership (positive or negative) and would hardly be noticed one way or another.

  28. Woody
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    Sadly I never really had much trust in the establishment to deliver what the people have voted for .. and I await with increasing disgust to find what game they will play next to avoid the democratic choice of the people .. my ears still ring with May’s promise that brexit means brexit and no deal is better than a bad deal .. and then she insists her bad deal is better than a no deal when there is no such thing as a no deal with WTO agreements signed sealed and waiting to be implemented world wide.

  29. isp001
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    The only face saving move left is to say that the UK has negotiated in good faith but the end result is something that is not acceptable. As such we will focus our efforts on no-deal and planning for single issue agreements to cover items such as air travel.

    Can we make it a rule that those agreements have to have normal bilateral arbitration mechanisms, normal exit provisions, and perhaps we should draft them this time.

    Of course May has attached her political career so firmly to the Withdrawal Agreement that it is impossible for her to change course, and she will do literally anything to ram it through as she dies with it. An above commentator had round 1 abstentions make it close, round 2 with cosmetic concessions it passes.

    Lots of nice words from those that oppose TM. At some point you are going to have to act and at this pace it is being left too late.

  30. Student
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    I hope May resigns after her deal is voted down. We can’t go on with her has PM and Hammond as chancellor.

  31. Adam
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    Mrs May’s position as leader is maintained only by the misguided followers of her wandering ways.

    Sensible folk ignore the errant directions of others & proceed straight on the right.

  32. Pete Else
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    The question is whether Mrs May is as stupid as she appears or playing a very devious game. What has she and the Remain camp got planned? I’ve seen suggestions of them crashing the stock market or sterling to panic MPs into passing the agreement just as was threatened with the bank bail outs. Also it wouldn’t be the first time that Labour changed their minds on voting. Seeing as we cannot rely on at least 220 Conservative MPs to honour a democratic vote this would leave us as the vassal of Brussels. In short we are reliant on the good faith of politicians to not sell us out as they have done so often in the past.

  33. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    I see Liam Fox is now publicly backing this doomed agreement. We hear that Gove is being primed to persuade you recalcitrant MPs to do what you’re told by the great leader. As for the TV debate I won’t be watching whilst your leader, Corbyn and the media try to convince us that we made the wrong decision and should be tied to the EU indefinitely. Let’s leave properly on WTO terms, keep our £39bn and go forward with confidence.

  34. Peter Divey
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately, the 2nd Ref is coming…Parliament wants it, and is citing their own incompetence as the reason. We are gridlocked…so we have to go back to the people. Risky though…result is more likely to be the same than not…

  35. Iain Moore
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Can we believe anything MPs say? There were supposed to have been an avalanche of Conservative MPs putting their letters of no confidence in , and look what happened to that. This morning we had Liam Fox, who has now been made redundant , and becomes the Minister of Nothing , extolling the virtues of May’s surrender. So I will believe the opposition to the Withdrawal Agreement when I see it.

  36. NickW
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    Members of Parliament are elected on the basis of the “First Past the Post” system; winner takes all and the loser gets nothing. Even if there is less than ten votes difference between the winner and loser, no one argues about the legitimacy of the result.

    The referendum was held using the same system; whichever side had the majority, would win, regardless of the size of the majority.

    Any MP who impedes Brexit is undermining the system which elected them, a system which has served us well for hundreds of years.

    Once the Government succeeds in ignoring the Referendum result; the precedent is set for a Government ignoring a General Election result it does not like and clinging on to power despite being voted out.

    The Opposition in Parliament need to ensure that the Referendum result is honoured, because if they don’t, it will pave the way for the May regime to circumvent the results of the next General Election.

    Would the Establishment do that in order to ensure that Corbyn and Labour never formed a Government? You can bet your life it would.

    • Andy
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

      There are two flaws in your arguement.

      Firstly, while an MP who wins by one vote does indeed ‘take it all’ they do not take or all forever. They have to do what they promise and, if they don’t, they can be removed after 5 years.

      Despite the fact that Brexiteers will fail to deliver on ALL of their promises there is, apparently, never a chance for the public to ever have another say. On this issue – and this issue alone – democracy apparently stopped in June 2016.

      Secondly, you forget that democracy in this country is done by general election, not by referenda. The result of the 2016 opinion poll is not legally or morally binding. Indeed, if Brexiteers had lost by 52 to 48 we already know they would have carried on their anti-EU campaigning. Farage said so.

      • Edward2
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:44 am | Permalink

        You forget Parliament has voted on this issue several times.
        Several times it has voted to leave the EU.

        Soon you will see Parliament vote to reject the Withdrawal Agreement.

      • Steve
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 7:03 am | Permalink

        “democracy in this country is done by general election, not by referenda.”


        • Polonius
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

          No taxation without representation. That worked out well for the UK establishment before.

      • Maybot
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

        So those who want to stay in should get it forever ?

  37. Original Richard
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    The larger Mrs. May’s defeat the greater the mandate she has to return to Brussels and ask for a re-negotiation.

    It would be better still for the UK if at that stage the Conservatives voted for a new leader who believes in Brexit as this would give another reason for the EU to accept a re-negotiation.

    The EU will be willing to re-negotiate as the EU Commission, Mrs. Merkel and Mr. Macron etc. do not want to see the UK remain a member of the EU. They don’t want the UK to use its veto to prevent further integration or the formation of a military force and neither do they relish the prospect of a possible 50+ UKIP MEPs.

  38. RAF
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    If Mrs May decides that she will lose by the margin that you and others predict and then decides to renegotitate with the EU why would it make sense to retain her as PM? The same argument holds if she forges on regardless and loses the vote. She is a rapidly diminishing resource and her performance yesterday in committee wasn’t particulary morale boosting for her acolytes.

  39. hans christian ivers
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Dr. Redwood.

    I am afraid the figures from your analysis on UK growth rates inside the EEC and Eu do not stack up.

    As all industrialised countries have had much lower growth rates after 1970 than before according to the World Bank and this of course goes for the UK as well.

    Reply Try reading what I wrote – I cover your point as a means of exposing the errors of the Treasury

  40. Christine
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    I just watched yesterday’s Theresa May performance in front of the Select Committee. She was so nervous and fumbling and clearly didn’t believe what she was saying. This country needs a strong leader not an EU poodle. I know timing is everything but you need to get the 48 letters in before she manages to get the minor concessions agreed with Barnier and the WA through on a second vote.

  41. JimS
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    Beware the cornered rat.

  42. Alan Joyce
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    If Parliament votes down the PM’s deal, I wonder who could be in line to negotiate the exit and free trade arrangements?

    Steven Barclay and Olly Robbins? That will go down well with Brexiteers.

    If the PM loses her deal then if she will not resign she must be removed.

  43. Bryan Harris
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    It would be nice if that scenario played out JR, but May is a determined woman, and will clearly employ any tricks she can to avoid a no-deal…
    What if she proposes a new referendum on her deal – is that possible – would Parliament allow it….? There are too many that want a ‘people’s referendum’, and it may get a majority in the Commons.

    Different groups are fighting against a no-deal, but at the end of the day, that is the only real way for us to leave the EU.

  44. Kevin
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    What is the next step if you lose the vote?

  45. G Wilson
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    These are indeed the steps May could take, were she serious about getting the UK out of the EU.

    But, on the evidence, she is not. That’s the only explanation for her failure to be straight with ministers, MPs and the people about what she was doing, and her continued false claims about the content of her “deal”.

    I believe she’ll push it to a vote knowing she’ll lose, as a pretext to either call another election or extend Exit Day (as the Withdrawal Act allows) pending a rigged, three-question referendum designed to split the Leave vote.

    The Conservative party needs to stop her, if they don’t want to be punished severely at the next election. MPs from pro-Brexit constituences who have not yet submitted a letter of no confidence are accessories in forcing us to remain in the EU without our consent. Many of us will be letting that fact decide our votes for a long time to come.

  46. Dennis
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    Theresa is really an ardent Brexiteer using the very bad EU Withdrawal Agreement as a back door to a no deal Brexit, since she knows more than anyone that her deal will be voted down.

  47. formula57
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    When the big defeat arrives, can we be assured of the immediate exit from office of T. May and associates? Can we then at long last have a Brexit government please?

  48. Rien Huizer
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood,

    A clean break then, unless a miracle happens. Time to look at the BoE analysis contained in the 2018 stress test.

    • Edward2
      Posted December 2, 2018 at 1:25 am | Permalink

      Which is hysterical project fear nonsense.

  49. agricola
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Please begin preaching the advantages of no deal and trading with the EU under WTO rules, a mythical remain generated cliff edge that sees us conducting 60%of our export trade with the rest of the World, and for the benefit of the UK it is in credit.
    All those negative voices from the CBI were they honest would admit familiarity with WTO rules for some of their trade. Their real arguement is monopolistic, they wish to have a controlling say in their industry throughout the EU.
    There would be nothing more mind concentrating for the EU than the thought of losing the £39 billion and having to pay £12 billion in duty on their exports to the UK. You could add to their woes the thought of having to compete with World sources in the UK marketplace. Tbey would then become the supplicant kn any bid for free trade with the UK.

    • Andy
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

      To help you, I’ve compiled below a comprehensive list of all the advantages of trading with the EU on WTO rules.


      • Edward2
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 6:45 am | Permalink

        Works OK for most non EU nations.

  50. Maybot
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:52 am | Permalink

    I’ve no fear of Corbyn. If the Civil Service can subvert the Referendum result then it can rein in a Corbyn government.

  51. den
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    So what is left? The ‘No Deal’ – with the EU. Instead we adopt the WTO Trade deal used by the Rest of the world when exporting to them.
    Sadly, with this Remainer-biased Government, it became evident a “No Deal” was always going to be OUR best deal.
    ‘OUR’ best deal (For the Leavers) is the deal that takes us completely out of the jurisdiction of the EU and into the much larger Rest of the World, where we previously expanded the old Empire (Now The Commonwealth – who are growing faster than the EU) and thence traded with the International Export Markets of the globe. All without any ‘assistance’ from anyone else. Meaning the EU, an inefficient organisation that debilitates rather than enhances our world trade.
    So Hopefully, we shall be gong Back to Our Future. And ‘Hooray’ to that! At last.

  52. Kenneth
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    The BBC is talking up the prospect of delaying Brexit and I suspect this will turn into one of the BBC’s full blown campaigns.

    Politically such activity is hard for politicians to resist. Those vocally opposing these pressures will, as always, be denied vital airtime and will therefore be rendered invisible and silent.

    More and more people are becoming aware of the propaganda and so I am hoping enough MPs detect this will resist these undemocratic and immoral pressures.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

      Everyday of the week the BBC has been pushing something on Brexit. Start of the week it was EFTA , then they were pushing the second referendum on all their news outlets, World at One, PM and 6 O’clock news ( I don’t remember them being so proactive when EUsceptics were seeking a referendum) , and today they were promoting Hilary Benn’s dishonourable Parliamentary wheeze. If we haven’t been assured that the BBC is impartial, you might come away with the idea that the BBC has an agenda.

      • Kenneth
        Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:31 am | Permalink

        The full grid for Mrs Mays/BBCs campaign is as follows (Saturday it is digital). These will be the headlines on the given days:

        December 1: Digital
        December 2: The Brexit deal
        December 3: Money
        December 4: Immigration
        December 5: Transport
        December 6: Industrial strategy
        December 7: Brexit for the whole U.K.
        December 8: Consumers
        December 9: May vs Corbyn Debate
        December 10: Agriculture and fish

        Courtesy of Guido

  53. Maybot
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    This, from Frederick Forsyth is why I can never forgive nor vote Tory ever again.

    Let the same people who sabotaged Brexit keep the Corbyn government in check.

  54. Mark
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    One of the failings of Olly Robbins as negotiator and Civil Servant chief in DExEU is that evidently he has prevented the drafting of any alternative agreement by the UK side. Indeed, the whole approach has been disastrous. It should have started with the political principles agreement at the outset (even if that contained potentially conflicting aims to be resolved), with priority given to detailed agreement on continuity for things like flights, leaving the more contentious areas for later, and giving clear sight to Parliament and the EU Council of the direction and difficulties. The UK should have drafted its own detailed proposals (done by staff who believe in Brexit) to put up for comparison. We would then not have a hiatus of insufficient time to draft acceptable part proposals.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

      No, we should have put in place all the necessary work to go to WTO, then invited the EU to offer us something better.

      • Mark
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

        Yes, of course we should also have done that. We should also have invited the EU to improve on Cameron’s terms in case they thought they wanted us to stay: anything less would be rejected because that is what the referendum had done. It would have focussed the Remain tendency on trying to secure better terms to stay, rather than the much worse ones we now have in May’s agreement. If the EU declined the opportunity (as they surely would have done), then it would have nailed their colours to the mast early on – and reinforced the need to prepare for no comprehensive agreement before the guillotine on membership.

  55. Edwardm
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Mrs May is the most wrong-headed PM so far, and worryingly her WA is supported by over half of Conservative MPs, such that we need the opposition parties playing politics to defeat Mrs May’s surrender proposals.
    Out of the (hoped for) defeat we might end up with WTO and freedom, but Mrs May is now cold-shouldering the US. There seems no end to her damages.

  56. Bernard Gallivan
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Far from supporting the lies May preaches, the Poll today by Global Britain shows that opposition to her WA increases while support for a Brexit with or without a deal also increases. Unfortunately, those polled don’t vote on 11 Dec. What the poll does indicate is that a 2nd referendum would produce even better leave statistics, which won’t please remainers desperate for that 2nd ref.

  57. JustGetOnWithBrexit
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    The Prime Minister must not be allowed to conceal the legal advice on the EU’s Withdrawal Agreement.

    The information must be made available, otherwise a fair vote cannot be held on this issue.

    Another Prime Minister also once tried to withhold legal advice over Iraq.

    Martin Howe QC has already published his legal assessment on the Spectator website.

    Mr Redwood, can you please ensure that Mrs May is not allowed to get away with this act of concealment.

  58. iain
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    Regrettably Mrs May has not been endowed with the British spirit personified by Mrs T eg obtaining a rebate from the EU and not hesitating in the Falklands crisis. As such we appear to have been treated with contempt by the EU negotiators. This will not change unless and until we have a PM who puts Britain & NI first.

    Who would you choose John ?

  59. ian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    A. Merkel getting in position to take over the EU, how does that sound, the EU will try to push into the middle east with deals.
    Big businesses have won everything so far and do not see any reason why that will change.

    Mrs May will sign the migration pact next week, hundreds of illegal immigrants already coming across the channel in the dinghy, next year the UK gov will be paying for ferries for them in accordance with the agreement and if pick up in the med on UK ships will come to the UK.
    L%G have moved into house building with the opening of one factory in the north which capable of building 5000 homes a year and say they are rolling them out countrywide.
    So don’t go worrying about immigration, they have it all under control.

  60. ian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    The elite, big businesses and globalist have got you right where they want you.

  61. Brigham
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    You said that another referendum wouldn’t honour the results of the referendum. I think you are being naive. Honour is not a word I associate with politicians.

  62. GilesB
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    I pray that you are right that May’s Deal will be scuppered.

    Then what?

    Of course, I prefer that we leave with No Deal, as you do.

    But there seems to be a majority in the Commons against that.

    Could May put together enough votes to just give up altogether, withdraw Art. 50, and simply remain? (I assume that either the CJEU will decide tha we can do this unilaterally or the EU would acquiesce if we agreed to not invoke Art. 50 for say five years).

    And, a second question, how likely is it that the EU would agree to defer the 29 March 2019 date, with or without a commitment to a General Election or another referendum?

    • James Snell
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:58 pm | Permalink’s much too late for any of that..they are not going to reopen anything or allow us withdraw A50. The agreement is on the table..that is the only thing on the table..not Norway..not Canada plus plus..what’s on the table is the only thing on is up to our parliament to agree for ratification or they don’t well then it is clear we will just leave on 29 march..which is what the people voted for

    • Iain Moore
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

      The problem we have is that Parliament is not politically representative of the country, where 75 % of them are remainers. This is unlikely to change for Parliament is obsessed with being representative of gender, race, religion and every other identity politics tokenism, al the stuff Parliament is not there to represent. The best way to sort out our unrepresentative Parliament would be to have the MPs who are unable to represent their Brexit constituencies , or honour their manifesto, to stand down and call a by election. This would be a lot cheaper than staging another referendum or calling an election, but somehow I don’t think they will.

  63. acorn
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    The Users Guide to the Meaningful Vote gives insight into just how clapped out the UK’s parliamentary system is.

    Some of us are trying to correlate the Pound to Euro exchange rate. Going back through the Brexit timeline to April 2015, when the Conservative Manifesto was published and the Pound was worth circa €1.43. Trying to establish where the Pound will go at the moment the result of the meaningful vote is announced.

    PS. Do you think MPs with currency bets on, will demand a second “meaningful vote” if the Pound tanks?

  64. Man of Kent
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    Assessing the vote on 11 Dec from the aphorism

    ‘Politicians are only interested in doing what benefits themselves not what benefits the people ‘

    I decided to apply this to my own MP under the headings of

    Party Unity
    Personal ambition
    Association opinion
    Views of spouse
    Implications for your seat at the next GE

    and concluded that with her present 18,000 majority and post of Vice Chair of the Party [ + £10,000] she is probably safe till after the 2022 election although she will most probably be in opposition then but still with £74,00o+ [ MP’s salary]

    There seems to be no incentive for her to oppose the May deal save for the opprobrium of voters like me who feel she will have let down democracy .

  65. Andy
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    The Brexit ultras have failed to figure out that their various red lines are mutually contradictory. And here in lies the problem.

    At some point you have to decide which red lines to ditch.

    Reply My red lines are all fine if we just leave with the Withdrawal Agreement

  66. ian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Mrs Clinton who was the number one women globalist, is now saying that immigration is bad for Europe, how times have changed, she, run twice for the top job in the USA and didn’t win, Merkel might gain the top job in the EU soon and be crowned top globalist women for many years to come, Mrs May is assured to win that title this year and maybe next year and Merkel might take over from Mrs May in 2021 if things go right for her, Poor old Mrs Clinton who should have taken over the leadership of the USA is now coming out against immigration in a bid to run for the third time to win women globalist of the year or decade.

    Mrs May might be out the picture soon, leaving Mrs Clinton and Merkel to fight it out.
    I see another women leader for the Tory party coming, how about Rudd.

  67. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Breaking News on Sky just now:


    Is that where our quisling in No 10 has got that line, or did she give it to them?

    Anyway, JR, you MPs had better knuckle down and do as she and they tell you.

    • Peter VAN LEEUWEN
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      After the UK persisting in talking almost entirely to itself, for about two long years now, are the 27 countries also allowed to give their opinion? !!!
      So the EU27 have just spoken:
      either the signed off deal,
      or no-deal (disorderly withdrawal)
      or no brexit.
      No dreams or myths but clarity.

      • Maybot
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

        Yes, Peter.

        The problem has been people within the UK – who don’t respect the referendum result – trying to keep us in the EU.

        It’s been embarrassing.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

        PVL. Only the second option is fine. Just get on with it. We have nothing to fear and everything to gain and if it encourages others to leave, brilliant. The end of the EU can’t come soon enough.

    • Richard
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

      Denis..problem is we have not been listening- Tusk Junker and the EU have been saying the same forever-what we’re at is called navel gazing

      The withdrawal agreement is on the table ready for ratification but if it is not ratified then that’s it, preparations will proceed for exit on 29 March. The elections for the EU parliament are coming in May so they are going to be fully engaged with that. Afterwards Junker Barnier Verhafstadt and all other senior EU will be changed out..but maybe not Tusk yet? So there’s no chance now for reopening anything or even considering Norway plus or anything else. The deal is on the table, we accept it or we don’t

    • acorn
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

      Oh, Denis, you have never understood how this geopolitical game is played. How many times have I told you that the UK is voluntarily leaving the EU. The EU is not kicking us out. Article 50 promises nothing tangible to the leaving member state; you get what the EU is prepared to let you have, solely in the EU’s interest and nothing else.

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

        The relevance of this being …?

        • Mark B
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

          The relevance being, that there is nothing to actually negotiate about. The so called ‘deal’ is a hoax.

        • acorn
          Posted December 1, 2018 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

          The relevance of this being you Denis and your ilk, are the real Project Fear. You may yet succeed in destroying the economy of the UK. But, you have already destroyed the UK as a nation of peoples with a common vision of its future, for at least a generation.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 3, 2018 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

            Nonsense, there always was a division between those who loved the EU and those who didn’t.
            We had wait 40 years to have this referendum.

      • libertarian
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:58 pm | Permalink


        How many times do you need to be told

        WE DONT WANT anything from the EU. We just want to leave

    • A different Simon
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Denis Cooper ,

      It is probably true that May asked Tusk to say this just as Cameron asked Obama to tell us we’d be at the “back of the “queue” for trade agreements” .

      What Richard , PVL and Maybot have said in reply is also true .

      Regardless it’s clear that the jumped up lackey Tusk is getting a bit too big for his boots and needs slapping down .

    • Mark B
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      Did Tusk mention queue or line when he mentioned a trade deal with us ?


  68. davies
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Is there any sign of the government formally releasing the legal advice on the WA?

    Or is that something they will leave until the last minute so MPs dont get enough time to digest it before any votes?

  69. Sue Doughty
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    The EU has a strange use of English they always do as if in a rule book. They say this is the first and final offer no matter what the issue. Then they have a second and final offer when the first is declined. The second and final offer should be no backstop at all.
    I do not like the transition period requirement. When Czechoslovakia split up into two they didn’t take this long or pay anything. When countries left the Soviet Union it was faster and less hassle than this. Either they agree to no backstop, no transition and very little money or we leave with no deal – last and final offer.

  70. libertarian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:43 pm | Permalink


    I’m not convinced she does face a big defeat. I think it will be quite a close run thing.

    The Conservative Party is a left wing EU “Social Democracy ” Party full of undemocratic, jobsworth, patronising incompetents . I dont trust them

    What have we done to deserve the establishment we have. To me it seems that this was probably what it was like in the final days of the Roman Empire

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:07 pm | Permalink


      I share your concerns

      I hope you are wrong, but I fear you may be right.

    • matthu
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

      “The Conservative Party is a left wing EU “Social Democracy ” Party full of undemocratic, jobsworth, patronising incompetents . ”

      That sort of image is even harder to erase than being the “nasty” party.

  71. hefner
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

    Frankly, what’s the point of the coming debate between T.May and J.Corbyn?

    • Edward2
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

      One pretends to want to leave the other pretends to want to remain.

  72. Helen Taylor
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    John can you please respond tomorrow to Mr Tusks declaration today that there will no Brexit if we don’t accept the deal. It is my belief that it goes ahead regardless and we are out on 29th March. Is there anyway that the eu can stop it?

    Reply No, not unilaterally

    • Mark B
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink


      Desperate people* say desperate things.

      Tusk that is.

  73. Nigel Seymour
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    My money is on Art50 being extended if she loses, although my understanding is that Art50 is written into law and if no deal is reached then we just leave come 29th?

    • Mark B
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

      It can be extended if both the UK and EU agree. Not sure if that will require parliament to approve though.

      If it is extended, I argue that we will have to have Euro elections. Expect UKIP to do a lot better than last time. 😉

  74. DaveM
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    “Trade. Economy. Trade. Economy. Trade. Economy. Trade. Economy.“ Blah blah blah. What will be will be. I want to hear about Foreign Policy, Defence manufacture and procurement, the ECHE, and how many laws will be adopted without serious debate.

    I’d also like to know about the UN Migration Pact and whether May the Weak will be signing it without a mandate to do so.

    • DaveM
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 2:28 pm | Permalink


  75. David Price
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Best not to count chickens and you need a plan either way, I hope you are better prepared than both sides were after the referendum.

    • David Price
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

      by “you” I mean the brexiteers for a WTO based Brexit ..

  76. ian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Have the Brexiteers made a plan yet to put before parliament or are you still just relying upon Mrs May to change her mind before the vote and go back to the EU to try and save the party and her self, a plan for full sovereignty in the withdrawal bill is what you need, just that, something that Gel and labour MPs could back, something short & sweet.

    Reply My Plan B has always been to leave without an agreement.

  77. Stuart Price
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    JR, what is the likely reaction to Hilary Benn’s proposed amendment to both reject the WA and ensure there is no WTO-based exit? How does this impact on the legislation that says we are leaving on 29th March 2019?

    Reply It Takes legislation, not just a motion, to thwart our exit on 29 March 2019

  78. Iago
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    Are there any Conservative MPs willing to speak out against May’s signing of the UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in about ten days? This will mean the death of the nation states of Europe, not to mention England. So is there anyone – anyone – in the H of C willing to speak for England?

    • Christine
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

      A question I would very much like the answer to as well. Perhaps our host will respond? Quite frankly it would heap disaster on disaster. I tell you, the Davos elite has a lot of answer for!

      • Chris
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

        A growing number of significant countries have withdrawn from the “Compact” it including the USA. Italy is the latest I believe. It is vital, I believe, that the UK withdraws also.

        The UN is part of the NWO hierarchy, with global government delivering the edicts/pronouncements to be turned into law by supranational bodies e.g. the EU. Talk about an unelected wealthy and powerful political elite, unaccountable to the demos.

  79. Mike of Wokingham
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

    If the Government can’t get the vote through parliament in December, it should abandon Brexit. It has all gone on far too long and everyone is saying that the deal is worse then being in the EU.

    • John O'Leary
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      Have you any idea of how divisive that would be? It would spell the end of democracy in this country and could very easily lead to civil strife on a scale not seen in this country for generations.

      • TRP
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

        Be serious. This website got 160,000 views in a month, about 5,300 per day, with about 200 messages in a good day, from about 50 people. How many of the 5,300 or of the 50 are from JR’s Wokingham constituency?
        I would think that relativizes a bit the whole thing.

        Relly And the twitter responses in addition

        • sm
          Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

          I’m a (fairly) regular poster, TRP, and I’m not aware that the Boundary Commission has stealthily expanded JR’s constituency boundaries to encompass South Africa, where I currently reside.

  80. Bob
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    According to, the Tories are busy organising new PPC lists in preparation for a possible snap GE and candidates that speak against the May/Robbins Surrender Treaty risk being omitted from the lists.

    I guess Anna Soubry and her fellow travellers will included on the lists (but winning back their seats could be more of a challenge).

    • Know-Dice
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      Soubry majority 2017 – 863
      Rudd majority 2017 – 346
      Redwo0d majority 2017 – 18,798
      May majority 2017 – 26,457

      Nuf said…

  81. Iain Gill
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    She should resign and hand over to Boris.

    Anything else and the Conservative party is toast.

    • Chris
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      Your common sense would put the pollsters out of a job.

      A landslide for a revamped Cons Party of grassroots conservatives, promising to deliver Brexit (true), acting on Conservative principles, and ditching the left liberal progressive agenda, would win handsomely (Boris could carry it off).

      • Iain Gill
        Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

        Boris is not perfect, for instance he bangs on about how great the NHS is – when all normal people are tired of the cosy consensus among the political class regarding the health system and would like us to instead start being open and learning from the best of the rest of the world. But given that we must pick someone from the political class and they are all like this (but need to start changing) he is the only “known” individual able to make a go of it. Otherwise we need someone from outside politics.

  82. John O'Leary
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    What do you think will happen if Mrs May faces a vote of no confidence in the event of a defeat on the Withdrawal Bill. Would she win it and is so could she re-present the Bill?

  83. JustGetOnWithBrexit
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

    The Genie is out the Bottle…wishing it away just won’t work.

    When May is forced to resign, the real hard work can begin.

  84. CharlesV
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    No, she should put her deal to parliament. You should debate it and then vote on it. That’s how it is meant to work in a parliamentary democracy.

    The sooner MPs learn than their job is to constructively engage with each other rather than mouth off on blogs, twitter and the media the sooner we might end up with a workable solution that the majority can live with.

    The last 3 years have shown quite how inept and useless you collectively are.

    Turn off the blog, decline media interviews and get on doing what you are being paid and elected to do.

  85. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

    More bare-faced lying on TV, both from Theresa May and that turncoat Liam Fox …

    The government has issued two reports: one is Command Paper Cm 9741 presented to Parliament, the other bears slogans and is directed more at the general public:

    Referring just to the second, government propaganda, version, it is perfectly clear that all of these desirable things which are being mentioned as if they are already accomplished facts, both by supporters of Theresa May’s ‘deal’, and by the report itself, for example in the Introduction:

    “The Brexit deal we have reached with the EU delivers on the referendum result …”

    “This deal takes back control of our borders, our laws and our money, and protects jobs, our security, and our United Kingdom.”

    are in reality still entirely subject to future negotiations. So, later in the report:

    “The final design of the economic partnership will be the subject of negotiations that will begin immediately after our withdrawal.”

    “The Brexit deal will guide these talks, providing instructions to both negotiating teams to get the relationship ready by the end of 2020.”

    In other words, since the aftermath of the referendum the only real progress on settling the future relationship is that previously the EU leaders gave their instructions to their negotiating team while the UK government gave its instructions to its negotiation team, but now the two sides have agreed to give joint instructions to both teams with respect to the subjects which should be covered and settled in the negotiations.

    Which does not mean that the UK will inevitably get everything, or indeed anything, that is “referenced” in the non-binding political declaration, as Theresa May puts it.

  86. Steve
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    So, she’s in Argentina now.

    Wouldn’t put it past her to come back without the Falklands.

  87. Steve
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:16 pm | Permalink


    Oh aye, and who does he think he is ?

    • Mark B
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

      One of FIVE unelected Presidents of the EU, that’s who !

      Other than that, search me !

  88. Steve
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    Theresa May;

    “I will ensure our borders are protected, I will ensure an end to immigration from the EU, I will this, I will that.”

    An exactly how does the idiot think she’ll be in a position to do any of the above ?


    1) she won’t be Prime Minister by January, and her party won’t even exist soon thereafter.

    2) she’s a yellow bellied liberal pacifist capitulator, and would therefore do what the EU tells her.

    I think May actually believes her own lies, and appears to have surpassed Blair’s infamy.

  89. ian
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    Reply to reply, every going as great as usual then John, just UN to worry about.

  90. Steve
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 6:17 pm | Permalink


    I find it interesting that you tell us a second referendum is not possible, because of parliamentary procedures etc.

    In the people’s experience this government just does as it likes anyway.

    There are plenty in the conservative party who don’t play by the rules, including Mrs May herself.

    She’ll probably get her way by the usual bribery tactics, and agreeing things with the french, behind everyone’s backs.

    In short she’s a very sneaky and sly individual whom the public do not trust. Accordingly the public do not trust the conservatives either.

    We fully expect May to try for a second referendum, she’ll just change the rules to get there.

    Should have got rid when we said, but hey, what do us plebs know.

  91. Ken Moore
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    Dr Redwood,

    Is your leader just incompetent or a EU stooge perhaps?.

    On Thursday, Theresa May said that the EU don’t want us in backstop because we won’t be paying. Really? So how do we explain the legal small print: Article 140 sets out the complex mechanism for us paying beyond 2022 . Articles 143, 144 and 147 all allow for ongoing payments for specific commitments. Art. 148 admits these payments will happen. And yes, ultimately, the EU also win because Art 132(3) means we have to pay them to extend transition. Given that the backstop is constitutionally unthinkable, the UK could end up paying whatever they ask. So that £39 billion will just be the start.

    The EU get all our money and are free of the pesky Uk preventing ‘ever closer Union’.

    ‘Game set and match’ to the EU as John Major might say…

    Will you promise to do all you can to oppose this wretched deal and not back down whatever the whips of May’s cronies throw at you and other dissenters ?

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted November 30, 2018 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

      There are other things where we just pay “what it costs” for access to databases etc with no reciprocal agreement, it seems. I guess we add info to these databases for free and end up subsidising member states?

  92. Denis Cooper
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

    JR, this week the government has issued two reports entitled “EU Exit” with similar content, the first being a Command Paper presented to Parliament:

    while the second is a propaganda version directed more at the people:

    However both have exactly the same first sentence in the Introduction:

    “On 29 March 2019, the United Kingdom will leave the European Union.”

    If that did not happen as stated then the second report would become a lie to the people; but as we know, most politicians have few scruples about lying to the people and so that would not count for much; however the first report would become a lie to Parliament, and moreover a lie which involved the Queen:

    “Presented to Parliament
    by the Prime Minister
    by Command of Her Majesty”

    And presented to Parliament just before the Commons started to consider the contents of the report and the true significance of the Prime Minister’s so-called ‘Brexit deal’.

    How is it possible to reconcile this very clear and completely unqualified statement in the Command Paper Cm 9741 with the vile threats issued by the same Prime Minister, that if MPs do not approve her ‘deal’ then she might prevent Brexit happening?

    What would be the constitutional position if she attempted to do that?

    Because it could only happen with her approval and at her instigation; it would require her to act on the international plane with regard to the Article 50 notice which has been submitted, as well as authorising ministers to act on the domestic plane with regard to the legislation enshrining March 29th 2019 as the “exit day”.

  93. rose
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

    Mr Redwood:

    Every time one of you asks the PM why we are paying a £39 billion ransom when the House of Lords says we don’t owe a penny, she piously answers that there is another opinion and that we will pay what we legally owe. Someone must ask her whose opinion this is. Is it hers? Is it the EU’s?

  94. Chris
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    I have this horrible feeling that an unholy alliance will ensure the WA will get voted through.

    Mr Redwood, I would like to be as optimistic as you are.

  95. DrakeM
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    Turns out Dr Fox hasn’t a clue..the Minister for Internatonal Trade has nothing in the pipeline, nothing to offer about new overseas trade deals only useless pie in the sky stuff- and is now going to vote with Mrs May.. a complete sell out from one of the prime brexiteers who led us into this quagmire

    • Mark B
      Posted December 1, 2018 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      He has to vote with the government to keep his job.

      Make of that what you will.

      We cannot negotiate FTA’s, even with the EU, whilst we are still members.

  96. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted November 30, 2018 at 11:58 pm | Permalink

    Hurray! I’m finally getting out of Scotland. That’s one successful thing, now the EU

  • 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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