Thank you Mr Barnier

Mr Barnier’s refusal to re open the Withdrawal Agreement makes it clear. We leave without signing it, and offer a free trade agreement on the way out.

We do not need  months of more uncertainty trying to unpick a small amount of the unpalatable things about the draft Withdrawal Treaty. We voted to take back control of our money, our laws and our borders, and must do so by 31 October.

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  1. Ian!
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    Given Mr Barnier’s statement together with what is being suggested in tonight’s BBC Panorama it would appear the WA plan all along was to keep things on ice for 5 Years, to give the UK time to change its mind and think like true Europeans.

    Parliament is still fighting it people aided with the cooperation of the BBC.

    This debacle will go down in history as the big betrayal against the people ever inflicted. A total surrender by Mrs May and her cabinet to a foreign power.

    Then people in those bubbles wonder why ‘We don’t believe you’ runs true to everyone else

    • Hope
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

      The names of the forty Tory traitors acting against govt, party and public are out today, again. Some of whom are ministers abstaining! At what point do you think your party will be finished?

      Hunt forgot to vote today while his supporter was a co-sponsor for Grieve. What should we make of that?

      General election please time for these traitors never to be in public office ever again.

      If the articles in guido are correct about the Panorma programme tonight I think it should expedite the extinction of your party. Time for a judicial inquiry for the dishonest Kitkat policy led by Mayhab and All those involved in treachery of our country. In fact this should be the first action of the new PM, it might send a message back to Mayhab for her last acts of treachery to our country. First of all bring in legislation to make sure she pays for her own legal advice and no protection as a crown minister.
      I think Farage is correct the worst and most dishonest PM in history.

  2. Alex
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    Chances of Boris fulfilling the commitment to leave? Not more than 40% I think.

    • Julian Flood
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

      I think nearer 41.357.


  3. Bryan Harris
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    But there will be a new face at the helm by then, and she has said she will allow ‘extra time’.

    I think we should ignore what the clowns in Brussels say and just do nothing – that way we leave by default

    • Pominoz
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:58 pm | Permalink


      But following the installation of ‘UV de Luxe’ on 1st November we may all see the EU in a new light!

      • Bryan Harris
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 5:55 am | Permalink

        New prettier face, perhaps, but same old demanding EU.

        This new ECP wouldn’t have been chosen if if she was going planning to take the EU in a different direction…

        …and our perception of the EU is very unlikely to change just because their front woman smiles…

        • Pominoz
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 6:18 am | Permalink

          Sorry Bryan. Don’t disagree with anything you say in either of your posts. My original response was just my attempt at wit.

        • Barbara Castle
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 7:48 am | Permalink

          The EU’s direction is set in stone in the form of its legally binding treaties. It’s what makes it so easy for the other 27 to show a “united” front, because they’ve all signed up to them in blood and face sanctions if they step out of line.

          I just wish more was made of the treaties, because Remainers believe we will carry on as we have, picking and choosing the bits we like. The truth is that the EU is very patient; always focussed on the objectives of the treaties and backed up by the ECJ, the self-appointed guardians of the treaties. Slowly, but surely vetoes are being neutered by QMV, providing the vehicle to transfer ever more national powers to the centre.

          If we were to Remain, it would be the tacit acceptance of a fully federalised Europe involving full adoption of the vision set out the treaties.

  4. Newmania
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    It was always clear. So are moving onto the Oliver Cromwell method of delivering this body blow; the suspension of Parliament ? Well, you have to break a constitutional few eggs to make a populist omelette no doubt, but as the referendum promise was to “….negotiate the terms of a new deal before we start any legal process to leave” (Leave leaflet), we will detect life on Mars before we locate a mandate for this insanity.
    (Mind you ,reinterpreting what was said yesterday to suit us today has advantages. My undertaking to go shopping has been retrospectively reconfigured as an agreement to go the pub and drink myself into a maudlin stupor. Anyone coming ?)

    • libertarian
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:24 pm | Permalink


      You either need to lay off the sauce or stop telling outright porkies

      The Governments position as stated in writing in the election leaflet is the EXACT OPPOSITE of what you just posted. I looked it up and this is what is says

      “Some argue that we could strike a good deal quickly with the EU because they want to keep access to our market.

      But the government’s judgement is that it would be much harder than that – less than 8% of EU exports come to the UK while 44% of UK exports go to the EU.26”

      The then PM in February before the vote stated

      Cameron: Government would promptly trigger Article 50 in the event of a Leave vote

      Heres the Open Europe report

      Pants on fire

      • GilesB
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 2:58 am | Permalink

        Art 50 itself says that a Withdrawal Agreement has to be negotiated ‘taking in to account the framework of the future relationship’. So the future relationship has to be agreed before the Withdrawal details are discussed and negotiated.

        • libertarian
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:25 pm | Permalink


          No it doesn’t go and read it , to save you time Ive copied the 1st of only 5 paragraphs in the entire document

          Article 50 says:

          “Any member state may decide to withdraw from the union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.”

          It specifies that a leaver should notify the European council of its intention to unilaterally leave

          Youre welcome

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

      Newmania – why don’t you try telling us simply and concisely why it is that you are so in thrall to your EU. Why – honestly – do you believe it is the greatest and most glorious construct in the history of the world? (Because it seems you do.)

      Why waste time telling us in any way you can think up that we’re all losers, and instead tell us in what ways the devices and stratagems of the EU are far and away better than anything we might attempt here on our own behalf? Then explain why it is best we stay beneath the boot of your EU masters.

      Give us a clue.

      • G Wilson
        Posted July 21, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

        You will never a hear case for membership of the EU that is positive, convincing, and relies only on actual facts.

        That’s because there is no such case for membership of the EU.

        After exit day, Project Fear will cease to be effective. Rejoiners will be forced to make a positive case to apply for membership of the EU, and they are going to fail spectacularly.

    • zorro
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      first sensible suggestion you’ve made – going to the pub that is 🙂


    • Peter D Gardner
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:47 am | Permalink

      Proroguing parliament is perfectly normal and is usually done every year or so. What’s your problem?
      Suggest some homework for you (Remainers never do any homework):

  5. Simeon
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:38 am | Permalink

    Has anybody told Boris?

  6. Shirley
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    Good news indeed. The WA must be the worst deal ever. Any party accepting that deal is signing their own suicide note.

    Leave under WTO, and then sort out a deal afterwards. Loss of our money and trade will hopefully make the EU behave a little more sensibly. Thank goodness May is no longer in control. She would have given them everything whether they asked for it, or not!

    Just to satisfy my curiosity, why did the EU need, or want, a clause that says no EU official can be prosecuted for a crime, or taxed, in the UK? Isn’t that a licence to commit crime?

    • Pole Gard
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      Disgraceful remainer rubbish, Shirley. No to the WTO. We are taking back control of our laws, that means NO EU NO WTO. English law only. Shirley, if you want us to swallow the UNDEMOCRATIC WTO, it us up to you, but dont pretend to have voted Leave in 2016, you are obviously a remainer troll. England first !

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

        WTO is a great way for us to trade with the EU. They will have to pay us £13 billion more than we pay them for access to each other’s market (because they have a £94 billion surplus with us). So at the off we are £26 billion better of re the EU (we stop paying them Danegeld and they start paying us for access to the ‘treasure Island’ market). Remember that even with the outrageous burden we have carried, we are a richer country than either Germany or France! 4th after the USA, China and Japan.

      • Pominoz
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:35 pm | Permalink

        Pole Gard,

        Why are you reading Shirley’s post as that of a remainer? Looks to me the exact opposite.

        I agree entirely with her comments and believe she asks a most pertinent question in her last paragraph. Surely anyone who commits a crime should be held to account. To grant immunity, in advance, is surely a licence for that individual to commit the crime. Also, why should they not pay tax on income. Another EU ploy to place all EU Officials in a class which demonstrates superiority over all ‘normal’ citizens. Disgusting !!

        • Shirley
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 5:36 am | Permalink

          Thank you Pominoz. I was also confused by Pole Gards response.

          I haven’t seen a single explanation of why the EU demands immunity from the law of the land for it’s officials! Quite frankly, it stinks to high heaven.

          • Pominoz
            Posted July 19, 2019 at 5:50 am | Permalink


            My pleasure.

            I am very confused by Pole Gard as further down in this article from Sir John, he seems to be talking ‘leaver’ language.

    • Jagman84
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      Seeing as the EU commission will not commence trade talks with us until we have exited, WTO rules is the only method currently available. The WA is/was an EU re-accession treaty, not an exit mechanism. If Parliament had ratified it, there would be no need for trade talks as we’d still be in the EU but on far, far worse conditions.

    • GilesB
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 3:02 am | Permalink


      It’s because they have pretensions of being a state. And pretend that all of their employees should have diplomatic status. Obviously absurd. No way it should be agreed.

  7. Nickyroberts
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    Sir John We now have more threats from MPs from your party about leaving without a deal. Leavers would like your take on this please.

    • Bob
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      NOT leaving without a deal equates to NOT leaving at all.

      If the UK refuses to leave without a deal, the EU will not agree a deal because they don’t want us to leave.

      Some MPs think we’re all stupid.

  8. Mick
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Out on 31st October 2019 , general election November 2019 while the iron is hot so that we can remove all the remoaners out of Westminster and install people who believe in Great Britain

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

      Remove opponents, install believers.

      The mantra of every dictatorship ever.

      • Peter D Gardner
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:36 am | Permalink

        By your logic we now have a parliamentary dictatorship since the vast majority of MPs are Remainers and Parliament is blocking Brexit, whereas a majority of the electorate voted to leave the EU and still wants to leave. Worse, those same MPs, with very few exceptions, were elected on a promise to deliver Brexit.

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 7:31 am | Permalink

        Andy….pot, kettle, black ?

    • graham1946
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      Wishful thinking, I’m afraid. They won’t vote for it as the Tories mostly Remainers, who won’t want to face the public, they are skint as their money is drying up fast and they have no candidates other than those already in position. Best Boris can hope for is to hang on until 2022 and try to rebuild if he gets Brexit done. If he doesn’t, as he says, the Tories will ‘kick the bucket’. This realization is the best we can hope for to make them support leaving in the end. No chance of any deal now from the EU after the Parliamentary shenanigans today.

      • Peter D Gardner
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:42 am | Permalink

        True. Only Boris can persuade MPs of all parties to face reality: they will be thrown out in the ext GE if they don’t support Brexit, deal or no deal. If he fails to persuade them, he must be prepared to prorogue Parliament to hold a general election, advising the Queen that this is the only way of forming a Parliament that has the confidence of her people. the only consideration really is how to persuade them. Part of that must be to boost preparations for No Deal. Leavers have failed to promote the preparations that have already been made. It is surprising how many are actually agreements with the EU or unilateral measures by the EU. In total they represent a ‘No Deal’ Deal. This is now a very high priority.

  9. Dominic
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    The EU’s frantic attempts to bully the UK into a corner is an admission of weakness.

    The EU is an accident waiting to happen. The UK’s decision to step back and embrace flexibility, freedom and democracy will serve as a beacon to other freedom hungry EU member states

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      Especially as, without the UK, the EU won’t have so much spare cash to bribe them with.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      Not going very well so far, is it? Since the Brexit vote support for the EU has gone up across Europe – including in the UK. Awkward.

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 7:32 am | Permalink

        in your dreams.

  10. Christine
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    Now we just need Boris to pick a dream team cabinet and keep his promises. Hopefully you will be chancellor.

    • Bob
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

      “Hopefully you will be chancellor.”

      Sir John would make an excellent choice for Chancellor. 🙂

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

        Brilliant! My business needs him in nr 11!

    • Simeon
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      It will be interesting to see whim BJ surrounds himself with. I suspect his team will be closer to a waking nightmare. As for SJR, not being the kind to be bought off with the offer of a plum job, he will not be in the running. But I’m sure he will be a valuable servant to the BJ regime from the backbenches.

    • Richard Hobbs
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      That’s just what I think too. What we have seen on this blog makes it clear that this is the job for Sir John. Boris take note.

      • steve
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

        Richard Hobbs

        “What we have seen on this blog makes it clear that this is the job for Sir John.”

        No, as good a man as he is, he’s influenced political correctness.

        Apart from that, yes, he’d make a good PM, However PC
        needs to be eradicated.

        Sorry JR, just my honest opinion. Besides I’m not sure you’d want the job anyway, it’ll make you age faster.

    • graham1946
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

      His selection will be the acid test. If he doesn’t pack the Cabinet with Remainers and goes along with the likes of Rudd (I think he will) we will see what he is made of and if his promises are like Cameron’s.

      • graham1946
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

        Sorry should read ‘pack the Cabinet with Leavers’. They are doing my head in.

  11. A.Sedgwick
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    His supporters in the Commons from Bercow down will carry on his malfeasance.

    My money is still on an election.

  12. Ian Wragg
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    I get the impression that faced witb reality Brussels are beginning to panic.
    Barnier is very good at issuing warnings . Doesn’t he realise this only hardens attitudes in this country.
    The appointment of the ………….. German defence minister and Lagarde to the ECB is reason enough to leave.

  13. James Bertram
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    The obvious solution. But is the Tory Party up for it?
    It is only this failure that has held us back for 3 and a half years, cost our country a fortune, and damaged our standing in the world..

  14. Kees
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Looks very like you’re going to get control of your laws borders money etc by the !st November, can’t see it any other way- no need to state the obvious.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

      Good news! We have had control of our border, money and laws all along. We have just had an incompetent Tory government in place.

      • Edward2
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

        Have you ever read the Lisbon and Mastricht treaties?

  15. Alan Jutson
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Leaving without signing the putrid Withdrawal Agreement makes it so much more simple to plan for the future, than the expensive complicated and extended arrangement that Mrs May wanted to put in place.

    The WA has been rejected 3 times by Parliament, thus that should now be history.

    We need to simply Leave on 31st October and be in control of our own destiny.

    Just what has Mrs May’s 6 month extension bought us, absolutely nothing diddly squat, except more payments into the EU coffers.We should have gone on March 29th but she simply did not have the courage, glad she is going.

    If Boris or Hunt do not deliver on 31st October, then the Tories are toast, Simples.

    • Martin R
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

      We probably did leave, which is why the government is desperate to prevent the English Democrats’ challenge coming to court. Although there has been a very effective news blackout on the case every single MP has been informed about it, such is the establishment’s fright. Yet the press remains silent and the public is blissfully unaware.

  16. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    Or better still, a lot sooner than 31st October…

  17. oldwulf
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    Barnier believes that the political infighting in the UK means that he does not need to consider a more reasonable withdrawal agreement. The Remain MPs have much to answer for and I would hope that most of them will disappear after the next GE.

    • Peter
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

      Yes. Barnier’s policy continues to be letting MPs fight amongst themselves and see what happens.

      A General Election will probably be necessary to drain the swamp and clear out MPs who ignore the referendum. Not sure when that will happen or who will trigger it but if we are not out by the end of October there will be hell to pay.

    • steve
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:13 pm | Permalink


      “The Remain MPs have much to answer for and I would hope that most of them will disappear after the next GE.”

      Oh they’ll disappear alright. Whether it be under a rock, or trying to run from the shame they brought upon themselves.

      Also the people are ‘less than pleased’ with them, yes I can foresee their disappearance.

    • Bob
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      The BBC is in “Project Fear” overdrive mode today.

  18. Caterpillar
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    OK. 3 months to prepare having seemingly mostly wasted 3 years. One can only hope the new PM and Cabinet come in and target themselves and the civil service on being ready, and clear (without scaremongering) to businesses and individuals what they should do. Calm professional delivery. No time wasting in the HoC or HoL, no time wasting pretence towards negotiation. (Waters immediately and vigorously protected, not a Barclay fudge). The PM needs to see that ‘no deal’ isn’t a threat for negotiation purposes, it is nothing more nor less than delivering on a three year old democratic decision. Don’t have it as a threat ‘on the table’, just prepare competently – having wasted three years and been on and then off, things cannot be as ready as they should have been but it does mean there now has to be focus – no more childish games from MPs and activists.

  19. PleaseSir
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    Wouldn’t you love to be a fly on the wall when Boris meets Barnier- Boris will say ‘the WA is defunct’, Barnier will reply ‘so what are we going to do now’- Boris will say- we have an embarrassment of choice- and Barnier will say ‘more tea’.

  20. Sharon Jagger
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    That’s a very common sense view. Leaving with no deal and asking for a trade deal.

    Will Boris Johnson do that though? When one reads between the lines I’m still not 100% confident that Boris will do the job properly. Undoubtedly he’ll do a better job than Jeremy Hunt.

    And it’s high time the remainers got on board with leaving and doing the best for the country.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      Leaving is not doing the best for the country. It is doing the best for a small group of extremists in the Tory party who have co-opted to their cause the not very bright, xenophobes and lots of people who can not spell.

      • Edward2
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

        And over 17 million other people.

    • zorro
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

      I don’t like it when Boris says ‘get it over the line’…. That is May language about her putrid WA….


  21. Lifelogic
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    Exactly but will the many dire, wet (and essentially traitors) in Parliament (in the Grieve, Clarke X 2, Morgan, Rudd, May, Hammond, Bercow mode) and even more dire ones in the Lords actually permit this outcome?

    Excellent piece by Rod Liddle today in the Spectator on the dire Emily Maitlis interview with him plus an excllent debunking the new “ethnic pay gap” agenda following on from May’s absurd and hugely damaging “gender pay gap” agenda. It is very clear that the gender pay gap is just due to the different subjects people study, the differnet jobs the genders choose and the work life balances they make especially when they have children.

    Women without children earn more than the average man already it seems.

    • Simeon
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

      Rudd’s self-abasement and her burning of bridges with her remainer friends would be very odd if she were not to be in King BJ’s court (she has unfinished business at the DWP…). But the erstwhile prophet and soon-to-be king must also surely have a priestly ministry. Rudd’s sins will be absolved, and she will be restored to Grace, no doubt with a zeal for Brexit worthy of St Paul himself. Have faith. BJ’s cabinet will demonstrate his might whoever is in it.

  22. Bob
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Ursula von der Leyen became President of the EU based on 52% of the votes .
    The Peoples Vote campaign seem to be happy with that, no calls for a second vote or more crucially, a Peoples Vote.

    • Kees
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

      Won’t matter to you Bob, she won’t be taking up the reins until 1st Nov and you’ll be gone by then

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

      And only one candidate. Really democratic

      • Mark B
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

        And she only got 52% of the vote. Doubt we will see a call for a ‘People’s Vote’ from the Remainers ?

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      Actually there is a second vote – in October to confirm the commission. In any case the vote for Ursula Von Der Leyen was a vote for something defined – her. The Brexit vote was not a vote for anything – it was a vote against something.

      We get that you do not want to members of the EU. But what none of you can explain is exactly what you do want. It’s like going into a restaurant and saying I don’t want the soup, bring me something I like. That is not how it works.

      Ah, you say. We want control of our borders, money and laws. We do not want to pay into the EU indefinitely, we want to control our fishing waters, we want to end free movement. But Mrs May’s deal does all that – and none of you like it! Honestly, it really is like dealing with petulant children who won’t have their drink because it is served in a red cup and not a blue one.

      I am sorry your Brexit has met the cold hard fist of political, economic, diplomatic, constitutional, democratic and sociological reality. But then you voted for this mess and I did not.

      • Edward2
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

        If you read the Withdrawal Agreement you would realise it does none of the things you think it does.

  23. Ken Smith
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    M Barnier has also made clear there will no talks about trade until the UK fulfils its commitments to pay its bill, on citizens rights and on the Irish backstop. As ever your post is deceptively selective

    • Martin R
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

      No talks about trade means the EU shooting itself in the foot big time. The Tory Party is desperate for a “deal” before the cut off date and will do anything to give in to the EU. But if the EU pushes them into a corner and we do accidentally leave without a “deal” then their exporters are going to be in a right pickle. Everyone with half a brain here is well aware of that. Hence it is blindingly obvious that all the talk of refusing to to renegotiate the WA surrender is actually nothing more than a hard line negotiating tactic. If our parliament were not majority pro-EU and hence compliant they would never have tried it on in the first place and got down to begging us for concessions before it was too late.

    • Jagman84
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

      We have paid 6 months more contributions than originally expected. They are attempting to fleece us due to an upcoming cash flow problem. I bet they now wish that they had given David Cameron more than ‘thin gruel’!
      I understand that HMG have offered EU citizens the same rights under UK law as UK subjects, not an enhanced EU version. If they want EU jurisdiction, they are perfectly free to return to their original EU homes.
      The Irish back stop was (allegedly) a ‘problem’ fabricated by Mrs May, in an attempt to stymie Brexit. Recent disclosures by EU officials about the UK’s Remain-minded negotiating stance makes that wholly believable.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

        Why on earth did Cameron not just leave when he was only offered this worthless thin gruel?. Alas he was never the cast iron, EU skeptic and “low tax at heart” Conservative that he lied he was.

        Had he been so he would have been a great PM, he had an open goal and the country was crying out for sensible leadership.

    • Fred H
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 7:57 am | Permalink

      Ken…..if Barnier carries that out, wait for the howls of anguish in the EU to UK trading businesses. No more production for UK export, short-time working, layoffs, bankruptcies, chest beating, bigger unemployment, protest marches, articles in the few uncensored media ‘But we were told the UK would never leave, they would crawl back and pay more into our budget!’.

  24. Mark
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    I am unimpressed by Barnier. He has lost his key ally at the Commission with the departure of Selmayr, while it is already clear that Von der Leyen will struggle to achieve anything. Meanwhile Varadkar has blinked and is now busy pursuing soft border solutions he previously claimed were impossible.

    It seems clear that the EU have no negotiating strategy for a no deal Brexit because they have never considered it as a serious option, assuming that the UK would never choose it for real. They will need some time to work it out, and fortunately there will be a fresh cast on both sides to do that. Barnier already lost his chance to succeed Juncker because the UK have not signed the WA. He can probably expect to be sacked as EU negotiator because he has failed to negotiate a deal, which requires that the UK accepts it.

  25. Frank
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    We don’t need to wait until the end of October, we could (for example) leave 10 days earlier and create a joint Independence Day/Trafalgar Day Bank Holiday.

    • Kees
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

      yes Frank, you can leave next week so long as you take Farage and Widdicombe with you

  26. Dominic
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    And still when you think they can’t plumb even further Grieve and his poisonous, destructive gang of Remain pygmies defy us all once again.

    It really is time to go on the offensive with these thieves of democracy. No more polite discussions. No more compromise. Just pure, brutal attack

    • bill brown
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:02 pm | Permalink


      What a load of fake news and nonsense from you, you are talking of some of the most democratic countries in the World according to the EIU

  27. John Probert
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    Barnier gets No Deal

    • bill brown
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

      John Probert

      Do you really think 500 million Europeans care?

      • John Probert
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

        The EU has great financial challenges and is weaker without the UK
        We are due a cyclical recession and many Europeans may loose their jobs
        They may not care but they should

  28. Fred H
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    Will all the advocates of re-opening negotiation of the WA finally accept it is dead? Barnier confirms yet again that the WA is all we are being offered. That of course will change once we finally throw the shackles off. Plus hopefully lots of Remainer MPs will resign and we can hold constituency elections.

    • Simeon
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

      Excluding Boris presumably? He is exceptional. The EU will bend to his will, the backstop will be gone, and the EU will be giving US £39bn.

  29. agricola
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Absolutely correct. Anything of virtue can be put into a treaty under the auspices of the Vienna Convention that provides a level of arbitration above national or EU jurisdiction. You do not open the coffin containing the dead body of the WA for further examination except under very exceptional circumstances.

  30. glen cullen
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    I agree with your comments and also note that your description mirrors the publication sent by the government to every household indicating what would happen if we voted leave i.e leave all the EU institutions (no mention of a WA in the publication)

  31. Lifelogic
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    If not the Conservative party is dead. What part of the 9% of the vote does the dreadful Grieve/May/Hammond/ClarkX2/Liddington….. section of the Conservative party not get?

    Brexit mean Brexit not May’s appalling non Brexit W/A nor anything remotely close to it. That is even worse than not leaving. We are either a mere undemocratic region of a country called the EU or we are out.

    It is not that hard to grasp is it?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      When Cameron just scraped his tiny Majority (the one that May totally incompetently threw away) he did so by promising a referendum so the UKIP vote returned to the party. With the Brexit party they have no chance at all unless they have actually left and then do some deal with the Brexit Party.

      The country is crying out for a real Brexit and some sensible government for a change.

      Thanks goodness however that May did throw her majority away – as otherwise we might now be stuck in her appalling £39 billion W/A.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

      Interesting. You – who voted for Brexit – think Mrs May’s deal is worse than not leaving.

      And yet you still want to leave – even though we now know that Brexit will ultimately look very like Mrs May’s deal.

      Sure they will tweak the odd word, maybe change the name – and they will probably put it in a new font to please the rabble. Comic Sans maybe. But the essential details of Mrs May’s Brexit deal will remain exactly the same, so long as your red lines remain the same.

      This puts you in an awkward position of supporting something you know is worse than the status quo. Why are you prepared to deliberately harm your country?

      • Lifelogic
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

        Not at all. In order of preference:-
        1. Leave with a sensible good deal
        2. Leave with no deal at all and negotiate something later.
        3 Remain (with the option to leave at any stage)
        4. May’s appalling handcuff deal.

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:00 am | Permalink

        ‘even though we now know that Brexit will ultimately look very like Mrs May’s deal.’

        – inside talks with Boris?
        Please tell us what he has talked to you about – we’d like to know.

  32. graham1946
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    The EU are saying they expected a crack team of negotiators to arrive with all the magic of Harry Potter. What they got was Dad’s Army with no plan of action or any idea of what they wanted. No great surprise. We are used to useless and devious politicians who treat the National Interest as a game. We deserve better and before anyone says we get the politicians we deserve, we don’t, we get what the parties foist upon us, mostly as a result of doing favours for the powerful and who will toes the party line.

    • formula57
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

      Yet the politicians we do not deserve are too often nonetheless rewarded by the people by being unpunished, so we do end up deserving them.

      In 1997 “Labour has no plans to introduce tuition fees for higher education”. The British public just rolled-over in the face of New Labour soon thereafter introducing same. 2001 saw a repeat with “We will not introduce top-up fees and have legislated against them” but 2003 saw such fees. And look where we (or more particularly students) are now, after Cameron, Clegg and Cable!

      • a-tracy
        Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:37 am | Permalink

        ‘The British Public just rolled over” oh no they didn’t! The ENGLISH public got rolled over.

        When the LibCons came into power and put the fees up x3 and added astronomic interest charges to ensure the 9% graduate tax would be charged for 30 years and English graduates would never be able to get free of it by paying off their personal cost any longer, they now have to pay off the cost of all the failures too, the English just coughed politely. The Scottish would have been manning barricades. You no longer feel capable of standing up for your English citizen rights in the Union, sadly the Conservative party have had a big part to play in this.

        Successful high earning graduates should be just able to pay off their tuition fees, if everyone in the United Kingdom was paying their graduate tax at the same % of tax I’d be happier, the policy has raised lots of money for higher education (and the pupil premium that mainly Londoners gained from) and those that benefit the most from the extra education should pay a bit more for it until their cost is paid off but not just the English!

        • a-tracy
          Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:39 am | Permalink

          By the way I noticed The BP are saying they would take off the astronomic interest on student loans I hope they mean for the 2012 plans too 👍🏻.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

      Part of the reason the Conservative Party needs to be retaken by its members. Central Office needs cutting down to size and put under control of the membership.

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:46 am | Permalink

        why have a Central Office? Local membership should receive applications for running for their MP. Having checked, interviewed and voted, that should be it. No interference from the ‘establishment’. You know – democracy – remember that?

  33. Gareth Warren
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    We will likely have much to thank in the end to the greed from the EU and the unwillingness to accept brexit from the EU establishment.

    Their actions have averted compromises and accerlerated likely replacement FTA’s with the rest of the world.

    We also have our host and the stalwart band of “spartans” to thank in opposing the withdrawal agreement, it is quite incredible that so many in the conservative party would bend their knee to such a loathsome agreement.

    Strangely too the figure of Corbyn with his enate anti-EU traits has been good for politics, I wonder if Cameron would have been quite as gleeful in his support if he realised the consequences.

    Looking forward here to a nice clean brexit and eventual US free trade.

    • Tom Rogers
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

      Yes to Brexit.
      No to U.S. free trade.
      Neither Brussels nor Washington, D.C.

    • bill brown
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

      Gareth Warren

      US trade deal ill take years and will include the NH|S and still give us less than third of the Eu, so stop kidding yourself

      • Gareth Warren
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 11:15 am | Permalink

        If the US trade allowed the US to undercut the NHS, why would that be a bad thing?
        Since NHS is government funded cthat would mean lower taxes, why is this bad.

        If UK and US seek a FTA why would they not immediately evoke GATT article 24 and enjoy the benefits while sorting the cdetails out? The incentive for US is to compete against a EU that has tariffs applied since EU will be slow to negociate.

        And the US is our largest trade partner by value, despite tariffs it is a larger market for the company I work at than the EU.

  34. a-tracy
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    All well and good John, but I read on Guido “Bercow has selected Grieve’s beefed-up anti-prorogation amendment” with names on there from your side of the house!

    They’re planning to nobble Boris, Hunt seems in on this because one of his key leading supporters is co-sponsoring. They’ll then do this ‘Boris can’t deliver on his promise’ propaganda that he can deliver at the moment, as you say, without this treachery.

    Apparently, the four Conservative MEPs voted Yes to Ursula Von der Leyen who “has vowed to block attempts to scrap the controversial Irish backstop she is ready to do battle with Britain’s next prime minister and defend the backstop to prevent a hard border on Ireland. Both Tory leadership contenders on Monday pledged to scrap the controversial mechanism as part of their pitches to win the keys to Downing Street. Ms von der Leyen last night said: The withdrawal agreement concluded with the government of the UK provides certainty.”

    So knowing this these Conservative MEPs still voted for her with British Labour and Lib Dem MPs very odd.

  35. iain
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    nuff said.

  36. Charles
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    I would love to believe that you are correct but there is a majority of remainers in parliament who seem determined to stop us leaving. Personally I do not like the Liberals, as they are neither liberal or democratic, but their position has always been clear to everyone. The people I dislike are the MPs who stood on manifestos backing leave and then did their best to wreck it. I think they should be deselected and forced to seek election now that their views are known. The problem is that they exist and they are fundamentally opposed to leaving.

    How does one get round this?

    • John C.
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      Has to be another election.

  37. Bill
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    Difficult to actually know who is controlling the Brexit negotiations over there. Barnier has had some of his own announcements countered by Brussels because he appears to be a loose cannon. A very irate loose cannon now because he was refused the President’s job. He became a real loser.
    We shall discover who actually pulls the strings in Brussels within the next few months for a ‘No Deal’ exit will cause a large loss of income for a lot of German and French businesses and they are the major EU players. Naturally with those cash losses, go job losses so there is more unemployment in the EU!
    “He who pays the piper….”

    • Fred H
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      Barnier was selected to frustrate the will of the UK – should they vote Leave. Now the tide has turned from his apparent victory to real concerns we are sticking 2 fingers up. Not good for Barnier’s promotion plans.

    • a-tracy
      Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      Barnier is nastier than Trump and gets away with threatening UK citizens that have made homes in the EU and want to stay. He is a bigger ‘bigot’ or ‘xenophobic’ surely by threatening people who are already established in the EU. Why isn’t the media condemning him, is it ok for him to be saying go home we don’t want you, we’re going to punish UK immigrants.

  38. Yorkie
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Yeah, ta agen, so long, slán agat, shalom and thanks for all the fish

  39. Jack Leaver
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    I see project fear is in full force today with the OBR forecasting a recession if we leave without a deal. I am sick of hearing and seeing the MSM reporting these and similar predictions whilst accepting them as facts. I do not see any rigorous analysis or detailed questioning as to what a no deal entails. I would like the doomsayers to answer “what are the prospects for the UK if we leave under WTO post-union exemption rules as set out by Dr Thomas T Grant (” Moreover, I need to see Boris Johnston demonstrate he has a comprehensive and detailed understanding of the most-favoured nation rule and vigorously counter the constant doom mongering.

    • Paul
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

      And the BBC using ‘will cause’ treating it as a statement of fact instead of a forecast where they should be using ‘could cause’
      Their entire article makes it look like a foregone conclusion with nary a mention of forecast not fact

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:51 am | Permalink

        as I keep saying – the BBC don’t report news, they try to make it.

  40. Roy Grainger
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    It’s not Barnier’s decision, he’s just the hired hand, let’s see if they shift position as the deadline approaches, I’d say there is some chance they will.

  41. DaveK
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    Project Fear is in overdrive today. How credible is the OBR now?

  42. DaveM
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    The BBC’s in full anti-no deal mode now. Their final push!!!

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      Mr Hammond says there’ll be a recession if there is a ”no deal” scenario.

      Is that the recession we should have had when we voted ”leave”? Or is it a different sort?

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:52 am | Permalink

        Ha Ha – recession has been delayed. Three years and counting!

  43. Iain Moore
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Off topic …The Remainers keep telling us how precious the Northern Ireland settlement is , yet today, with Grieve’s amendment , they are going to use it as a plaything to obstruct Brexit.

  44. Halfway
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    Why do you say we offer a FTA on the way out?- we did not vote for a FTA nor do we want one. In any case it is absolutely clear FTA will not happen without the WA therefore its only a waste of time speculating like this

    • Pole Gard
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

      I FULLY agree. No FTA, no WTO, England first. Let the world come and ask our favour, like in the past when we had leaders who BELEIVED in our country, eg Drake, Wellington, Churchill. And now Boris!

  45. Lifelogic
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Tax to death Hammond is again at his “project fear” agenda yet again, with the new OBR report. He says he “greatly fears” a no deal Brexit. Well, as this man get almost every prediction very wrong and has given us the highest, most idiotic and most complex taxes for 50 year perhaps this is probably a very good sign.

    We will be just fine mate business just want government to get out of the way. From Theresa May and Philip Hammond all we need is an apology and a long period of silence and reflection from them.

    The other day he said:-

    “The new government, the new prime minister will have a majority of two or three in parliament and I’ll be one of them … so a lot of power rests in parliament going forward. If the new government tries to drive the UK over a cliff edge called ‘no-deal’ Brexit then I will do everything I can to stop that happening.”

    Such loyalty – he is also one of the main reasons the Theresa May failed completely to get an acceptable deal by failing prepare properly for no deal.

    May’s speech yesterday was truly pathetic, even by her appalling standards. What a totally deluded fool she is. Just like John Major. At least Cameron has had the sense to keep fairly quiet.

  46. AlmostDead
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    There is no reason to offer a trade deal on the way out. Trade deals are vastly over-rated. Instead, drop all tariffs to zero, cut corporation tax to zero and reduce government size and regulation.

    • Tom Rogers
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:49 pm | Permalink


    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

      The resulting high numbers of UK business failures and, consequently, the loss of tax revenue will mean swingeing cuts to services.

      This will include the NHS, social care, old age perks and pensions. So if your user name is correct and you are indeed ‘AlmostDead’ your favoured no deal may just well finish you off. And odd position for you to take.

      • a-tracy
        Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:49 am | Permalink

        If we’re doing so badly why are the EU wanting a bigger cut? I’ve just read ‘According to Treasury accounts published this week, Britain sent a total of £15.5billion to Brussels in the 12 months leading up to March 31, a 20 percent increase on the £12.9 billion the previous year’

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

      You are right. The way forward is radical reform. I would abolish Corporation Tax, which is a relatively modern tax in any case.

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:55 am | Permalink

        yeah modern taxes are so …..yesterday. Bring back Hearth and Window taxes I say!

        • Mitchel
          Posted July 20, 2019 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

          The Beard tax,too!

    • Jagman84
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

      It would certainly solve the Irish backstop non-problem! Implement all of that and soon there would be no functioning Irish economy left. Making the whole of Northern Ireland a Freeport would be my way of proceeding in the region.

      • bill brown
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

        Jagman 84

        fake news and nonsense

      • a-tracy
        Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:50 am | Permalink

        What like an Isle of Man?

  47. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    The problem is that the actions of May have made this more difficult than had we been starting from square 1 now. By caving in and never even thinking about what might be in the UK’s interests, May and her team have led the EU into a false sense that their agreement is the only game in town, and perversely May has made a walk-away Brexit more likely.

  48. ukretired123
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    It is obvious to anyone with business acumen that the Withdrawal Agreement was a one-sided trap 585 pages of legalise and should be called the Withdrawal Non Agreements.
    Apparently May was offered an FTA in early discussions but chose to remain.
    So much for her “I love my country” legacy.

    • Jagman84
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

      It was an offer by Donald Tusk for Great Britain only and did not include Northern Ireland. If she had accepted it, the DUP & ERG would have had her out of Number 10 within days.

  49. Peter van Leeuwen
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    The pragmatic way forward will be some checks in the Irish Sea, and I assume that the EU27 will patiently wait until a UK government will realise that, after which talks for a future relation can resume. Then also no Single Market nor Custom Union required.

    • Stred
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

      With zero % tariffs on agricultural products in NI and full tariffs from ROW to the rest of the UK, as published by the government, there will be a need for checks between NI and British ports. Otherwise we would be eating cheap Argentine beef and other stuff. Meanwhile, Southern Irish beef and dairy will be losing their main market and British made cars will be cheaper than German, unless the unpopular German president of the EU gets her finger out and agrees to continue with zero tariffs. Tough on Dutch flowers and cheese too.

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

        “Tough on Dutch flowers and cheese” – maybe so, but the EU internal market is and its integrety is by far more important to the Nethlerlands. We’ll survive without current arrangements with the UK.

        • Fred H
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:59 am | Permalink

          of course you will survive. Who said you wouldn’t ? The point is – trade will dry up, your businesses will suffer, relations between us will naturally decline. What would maintain existing friendship? Visiting bulb fields and dubious reasons to see Amsterdam can only do so much.

          • Peter VAN LEEUWEN
            Posted July 19, 2019 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

            @Fred H:
            Trade there will always be.
            Even if it becomes more expensive, we’ll still buy some English tea. Some (fewer) people will still buy Dutch products.
            In 5 or 10 years there may be a healthy relationship again, who knows?

        • Stred
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

          Thanks Pete. And I will survive without having to buy decorative vegetables for my bird.

      • margaret howard
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 4:29 pm | Permalink


        “and British made cars will be cheaper than German..”

        Would that be Aston Martins and Reliant Robins?

        • Edward2
          Posted July 20, 2019 at 12:55 am | Permalink

          You plainly don’t have any knowledge of the UK automotive industry.
          Try looking things up on the internet.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

      It is not for you, in your arrogant way, to meddle in the governance of another Sovereign State. You must respect the territorial integrity of others and it has been one of the main problems from the beginning that the EU does not respect other States. So no, we wont have checks in the Irish Sea, unless you mean checks between the Republic of Ireland and Continental Europe.

      • Peter van Leeuwen
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

        @Andy: I do want to prevent your future chlorine chickens to end up in Holland, so they cannot end up in N. Ireland either if there is not to be a border with the rest of Ireland. So there checks in the Irish Sea between GB and N. ireland are simply necessary. Nothing arrogant, just being realistic and pragmatic.

  50. ADAMS
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    100% in agreement .

  51. Fed up with the bull
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Hurray, I am glad they will not reopen the discussions regarding the WA. Let’s hope whoever gets into number 10 has the balls to just say up yours, we’re leaving.

  52. Stephen Reay
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Just seen Anna Eagle whinging about parliament being suspended so that we can leave without mps stopping us. She said it would be undemocratic to suspend parliament . You wouldn’t believe it if you hadn’t seen it for yourself, she is one of the very people who are trying to stop the democratic will of the people.

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

      So I wonder how she felt about the prorogation of Parliament in 1997 by John Major. That was hardly about the hugely important well being of the country – merely the issue of some dodgy ‘cash for questions’ stuff, wasn’t it?

  53. Christine
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Happy days!

  54. Bob
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    BBC R4 Toady suggest that a slowdown in London house prices could be due to Brexit uncertainty. No mention of the huge numbers of new buildings springing up in every available space, affordability or any other factor from a myriad of possibilities.

    As always, they spin the story to suit their agenda, same goes for their AGW stories, for which they no-platform anyone who dissents.

  55. Kathleen P
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for your clarity, Sir John. I truly hope that your faith and trust in Boris is rewarded. You will have the unending gratitude of many on the Brexit side if you can continue to hold his feet to the fire until the deed is done and a bright future follows.

  56. Mark B
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    Good afternoon

    I have always found Mr.Barnier to be consistent and honest in what he says. No grand statements and empty promises, he just tells it like it is.

    Pity he works for the EU.

  57. margaret howard
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:23 pm | Permalink


    “We voted to take back control of our money, our laws and our borders”

    We lost none of them.

    reply Oh but we did!

    • libertarian
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

      Margaret Howard

      If the EU hasn’t taken control of our laws, money and borders , if the EU hasn’t imposed regulations on us , if the EU hasn’t had a great impact on the country then what exactly is the point of the EU if it hasn’t done anything?

      • bill brown
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:08 pm | Permalink


        Margaret’s pot is you are all over playing the importance of the EU and she is right

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      Oh, Ms Howard. Do widen your reading! It’d make your posts much more interesting, even if you remain a remainer.

      (But do tell us why the EU has you in thrall. What makes such a dubious and unstable project with unelected leaders so attractive to you? Why on earth are you so upset that we don’t want to be a part of it when it’s obvious it’s heading for trouble?)

      • bill brown
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        : Jones

        Considering your ignorance on Europe I wold probably keep more of a low profile

    • A.Sedgwick
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      Staggering comment when thousands of EU directives are nodded through our supine parliament.

      • graham1946
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:45 pm | Permalink

        Most don’t go through our Parliament at all, they are passed as a matter of fact. because EU law is superior to our law. There is so much of it, Parliament does not have the time to do it all. Only about a third of the laws imposed by Brussels have actually had an airing in Parliament.

    • Edward2
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

      How can you write that Margaret?
      Facts matter whatever opinion you hold.
      Open Borders are one of the four freedoms of membership
      The EU has supremacy over law making in the UK
      Our budget has to be accepted and approved by the EU
      There are rules over what deficit we can have.

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      Which laws did we lose control of?

      PS: who here has ever got into the UK without showing their passport? No, me neither.

      Reply Most including tax, fish, environment, agriculture etc

      • DaveM
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

        Deporting foreign criminals for starters.

      • GilesB
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 3:20 am | Permalink

        The Common Travel Area preceded the European Community. Thousands of people enter the U.K. every day without any need to show a passport.

        Showing your ignorance again

      • Fred H
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

        Andy….Do I detect the number of postings from you is indicative of the growing anxiety you feel as we near the end of the tunnel out of the EU camp?

      • a-tracy
        Posted July 20, 2019 at 9:59 am | Permalink

        All those getting here in inflatable boats and the back of wagons! Who were in a safe EU Country anyway – even though we’re taking and supporting our fair share of refugees and handling thousands of legitimate immigrants many of whom are living on our benefit and support, food banks have exploded and there are real concerns about children not being fed in areas of high immigration.

        Working Tax credits and child tax credits should and do give sufficient financiers to feed children so this needs a proper thorough investigation.

    • zorro
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

      Indeed JR – wake up Margaret. We have handed over nett equivalent 500 billion since we entered the EEC. We lost control of our money by sending it to the EU for such a useless deal. Our laws are heavily influenced by EU directives, and our immigration policy is subject to effective ECJ oversight. EU citizens have more rights for themselves and their spouses than GBR citizens!


  58. Pete S
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Disagree, it is not a commission competence. Art 50 says the negotiations are with the EC. So the r27 must have said they will NOT negotiate contrary to their treaty obligations. This is the opinion of our, what we are told, are our friendly European neighbours. They dictated the crap Withdrawl Treaty, the UK rejected their capitulation agreement. Some home truths should be spoken and drop all this completely false bonhomie.

  59. Halfway
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    Furthermore I hear some commentators on sky news speculating that revocation could be a possibility but there’s no chance that this will be acceptable to the EU now- it will be no more so than there could be more kicking the can, so it’s not possible because the EU parliament has to wave goodbye to the Farage group of MEP’s, otherwise they know that disruption and distraction will be the order of the day and that would be just too much. So 31st Oct is final day

  60. Peter Wood
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    Sir John,
    I think you may be early; Mr. Barnier now has no need to hang around in the EU bureaucracy, all the top jobs having been assigned, so he’s likely to move on and let somebody else pick up the pieces come October, who will have new instructions (from Berlin).

  61. James1
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Mr Barnier’s tune will doubtless change in the not too distant future, hopefully before he has to wipe too much egg off his face after being forced by wiser heads in Europe to get real. It’s going to be enjoyable to watch the reality dawning on the unelected Brussels cabal and their various odious apparatchiks.

  62. J Bush
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    I get the impression Barnier is extremely miffed with Traitor May. He thought he had it ‘in the bag’ with her signing it off as well. But as she has proved, she is no negotiator, so couldn’t sell the stitch-up to the UK. And he lost his chance to become a President.

    However, von der Leyen is contradicting him and says she will re-open it. How very magnanimous of her (thanks but no thanks) and in the process has no doubt miffed Barnier even more.

    I believe the expression is ‘popcorn time’.

    I just hope your faith in Johnson is justified.

  63. bill brown
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Sir JR.

    When a negotiation is still on-going as is the case with us leaving the EU, if you are not happy about the outcome you at least try and sit down with our allies and friends and try to come to another arrangement, before you just run off offering them something else, they might not even accept

    This is a very immature way of realising an important part of our future

    Reply The EU terminated the negotiation some time ago

    • bill brown
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:32 pm | Permalink

      Sir JR,

      As long as there is time there are opportunities, even if we did not play our cards well

  64. John Fitzgerald
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    I see project fear and their lackey the BBC have been at it again with the outrageous statement “No-deal Brexit could cause £30bn economic hit, watchdog says”. This is the OBR (Office for Budget Responsibility) making seeping statements about public borrowing increasing. Further in the article it said “The watchdog said this scenario was based on assumptions that a no-deal Brexit would cause a UK recession.” Was that not said about us voting to leave?

    • John Fitzgerald
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      Try sweeping statements

    • margaret howard
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

      John Fitzgerald

      ” “The watchdog said this scenario was based on assumptions that a no-deal Brexit would cause a UK recession.” Was that not said about us voting to leave?”

      Haven’t the markets spoken now that the £ has dropped like a stone against the $ and euro?

      And we haven’t actually left yet.

      • Edward2
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        There is no correlation between the pound’s value against the euro and the dollar and our economic performance.

        • bill brown
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

          Edward 2

          If you believe this nonsense about no relation to economic performance, I would like to refer you to Samuelsons Economics book as soon as possible

          • Edward2
            Posted July 20, 2019 at 1:01 am | Permalink

            There are far more forces acting upon our exchange rate than our wn economic performance.
            Wars, natural disasters, sudden illness or deaths of world leaders and the political changes in other nations are just a few things that move world exchange markets
            I should have said there is no major correlation to be fair.

            But I have seen the pound move against other major currencies with no connection to our own economic performance many times.
            Not keen on Samuelsons bit too Keynesian for my tastes.

          • a-tracy
            Posted July 20, 2019 at 10:01 am | Permalink

            Bill, According to Treasury accounts published this week, Britain sent a total of £15.5billion to Brussels in the 12 months leading up to March 31, a 20 percent increase on the £12.9 billion the previous year, why is this?

      • mancunius
        Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:16 am | Permalink

        The value of sterling goes up and down largely unconnected with UK market performance. We actualy need a lower value of sterling, and it will come about.
        Sterling’s value is calibrated to the needs of the economy, not to the wishes of holidaymakers and expat retirees.

        • a-tracy
          Posted July 20, 2019 at 10:02 am | Permalink

          The ft says Sterlings gone back up?

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

      Yes, it’s probably a different type of recession – you know, different from the one just after the referendum, that caused all those job losses, etc.

    • John C.
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

      The thing is, they WANT a recession, if only to prove they were right all along. They’ve done their best to talk down our prospects, and will continue to do this. Patriotism is not their strong point, to put it mildly.

    • bill brown
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

      John Fitzgerald

      We already more or less have a recession

      • graham1946
        Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

        So does Germany, Italy is 130 percent of GDP in debt, France 100 percent. Good in the EU isn’t it?

        • bill brown
          Posted July 19, 2019 at 9:13 am | Permalink

          Graham 1946

          Yes Graham you are right it is good I the Eu just ask the Danes, Swedes ,Finns, Poles, Slovenians, Slovaks, Dutch , Spainards and Portugese , Bulgarians and Romanians they all have economic growth

  65. Jack Falstaff
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

    Please can you explain how we do that (leave on October 31) in the wake of the passing of Dominic Grieve’s amendment.
    Thank you in advance Sir.

    • Mick
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

      I’m no expert Jack but it’s only a amendment and not law and won’t become law till it’s passed both Houses of Parliament and then given royal assent by the Queen ,and I don’t think there is enough time left in Parliament till October 31st to pass it hopefully

    • Andy
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

      Unless the Northern Ireland Bill or which Grieve’s amendment is a part receives Royal Assent, it will make no difference. Parliament my pass motion after motion after motion, but they do not trump Law and the Law is we leave on the 31st October.

    • graham1946
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

      The law is already on the Statute Books that we leave on 31st. October. Only by the Government asking for an extension or asking Parliament to rescind Article 50 can it be overturned. Boris won’t do that and Grieve & Co’s huffing and puffing will have no effect on that. We will leave on 31st October, the only question is will it be on WTO or some kind of deal.

  66. Stephen Reay
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    Sir John can you please explain to all who comment on this site how Boris will now manage get us out on the 31 st Oct after todays vote.

    REPLY We will leave in EU and UK law as that is already legislated.

    • Simeon
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

      Stephen, as I understand it, Sir John’s view is that the next government (with, we understand, BJ as PM) losing a vote of confidence, followed by a GE, with a new government elected with a mandate to legislate a new leaving date, however that might look, simply will not happen. The law is clear and that is that. You can’t change the law. The law is set in stone. Or at least that is the logic…

  67. APL
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    And yet today, reports in the Media say Parliament voted to frustrate ‘No deal. BREXIT’ in the event of a Johson.

  68. agricola
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    Ice pillows for Kippers, I’ve heard it all. This is a UK regulation and confirms that the inmates have control of the asylum.

    • Pete S
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

      If it turns out to be a UK reg, then only shows our idiot civil servants gold plating regulations. We must now have the most stupid civil service in Europe.

  69. Edward2
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    Page 36 of the Conservatives manifesto said “no deal is better than a bad deal”
    It is about time they followed their own promises as they were the basis on which people voted for them.
    Their turnaround means they are handing millions if votes to the Brexit Party.

  70. Cunning Jesuit
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    With The Parliamentary arithmetic against leaving with “No Deal”, do you think Mr Johnson’s mantra of leave “come what may” gives him the room to accept any deal as long as we have left and he can get it through Parliament? In other words, he’s giving himself room to accept a customs union if it means we leave the EU at the end of October.

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      Yes – Mr Johnson voted for Mrs May’s deal at the third time, so he must have thought it was worth having then. This ‘come what may’ sounds sinister in view of that. If it’s easier just to resurrect the deal as a mishmash to force it through so he can keep his word – then goodness only knows what it will do to the Tory party.
      It’s the lipstick and pig analogy. I do hope he has more sense and regrets his decision to vote for it – or was it all part of his ‘long game’?

  71. Peter
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    There is no evidence of a mandate for a no-deal brexit. Not in parliament, nor in the UK population.

    Reply There is a very clear mandate to leave which means leaving without the Withdrawal Agreement which has been widely condemned by voters.

    • Shirley
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

      The Brexit Party stood on a ‘WTO exit’ basis, and won the European elections. That’s a pretty good mandate, as the majority of constituencies voted for them. If this was repeated in a GE, they would be the party in government.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

      Clear mandate to leave, there was a referendum. Two years passed since A50 and WA was inappropriate therefore leaving without WA is what happens. This is as easy as rocket science, frightening that people cannot understand it (there are obviously cynical, antidemocratic MPs but that’s politicians for you).

    • L Jones
      Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      Facebook, Peter?

  72. Mick
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    After watching the NI debate and votes afterwards the turn-coat mps should read what Mr Cameron said
    These are the words of David Cameron – PM and leader of the Tory Party

    When these words were spoken not a single Remainer objected – indeed they all voted unanimously to give the British people a vote on the EU

    It was only after they unexpectedly lost that the screaming and the manipulation started

    “You will have to judge what is best for you and your family, for your children and grandchildren, for our country, for our future.

    “It will be your decision whether to remain in the EU on the basis of the reforms we secure, or whether we leave.

    “Your decision. Nobody else’s. Not politicians’, not Parliament’s. Not lobby groups’. Not mine. Just you. You, the British people, will decide.

    “At that moment, you will hold this country’s destiny in your hands. This is a huge decision for our country, perhaps the biggest we will make in our lifetimes. And it will be the final decision.

    “So to those who suggest that a decision in the referendum to leave would merely produce another stronger renegotiation and then a second referendum in which Britain would stay, I say think again.

    There will not be another renegotiation and another referendum

    “The renegotiation is happening right now. And the referendum that follows will be a once in a generation choice. An in or out referendum.

    “When the British people speak, their voice will be respected, not ignored. If we vote to leave, then we will leave. There will not be another renegotiation and another referendum.”

  73. James1
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    The Biased Broadcasting Corporation were at it again today. Continuing to relentlessly push project fear and the anti-Brexit narrative. Hopefully the new PM’s team will sort this appalling situation out without undue delay. The bias is so clearly blatant as to be laughable if it were not such a serious issue. Lord Hall and others under whose charge this is taking place really ought to have the decency to resign, though doubtless fat chance of that happening.

  74. Paul
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:07 pm | Permalink

    If Boris was to call an election in October (or Labour to win a no confidence vote) would that mean Parliament was not sitting on the 31st so there would be no opportunity to scupper a no deal, it would just quietly sail through as it is already existing legislation.
    Also seems the Amendment is being over-hyped, it seems to commit to right to debate a published report, surely then just not publishing the report would mean Parliament is not recalled if it has shut down or what if a debate is scheduled for after the 31st

  75. Ian!
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    So there you have it 47 Conservatives MP’s by their actions this afternoon let it be known they will be trying to thwart the UK becoming and independent democratic country.

    Their preference is for the UK to take its orders from our new President Ursula von der Leyen. What is meant so far by a deal or more correct another treaty. Is our laws must still come from the EU. Our Supreme Court is the ECJ. Our Chancellor will still keep submitting his budget proposals to her office for approval. Oh and that EU Army..

    Yet these same MP’s talk about sovereignty and democracy, but take every move possible to ensure it never again it pass’s this way. What are they so afraid of – taking responsibility for the well being and asperation of the people that pay their wages, surely not.

    If we stay in the EU we do not need Parliament, it will have no function, local councils do better job on local matters and they have a systems in place for taking orders from Political Masters.

  76. steve
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m pleased that you get straight to the point on this one JR.

    Yes indeed we must be out on 31st Oct. This really is the last chance saloon for the conservatives.

    And I’d hope that when we do get out of the ungrateful EU, the likes of Bercow and his remain cronies will be booted out of Parliament.

    I trust Boris to get us out by 31st, but I don’t trust Mr Hunt to do so. In my opinion the latter will sell us down the river.

    To me, there is a touch of Blair-ism about Mr Hunt.

  77. Fedupsoutherner
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

    Off topic. Just seen on the BBC news that primary school children are having more mental problems. Is it surprising when many parents let them watch programmes like EastEnders, Emmerdale and Coronation Street? They are full of subjects such as sex, extra marital sex, lesbians, gays, transexuals, violence, drugs and murder. These programmes should not be shown at the time they do in the evenings. As far as I am concerned, they are so full of rubbish they have no place in television today but certainly are not suitable viewing for children

    • Tweeter_L
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 6:50 am | Permalink

      I do agree: these programmes are not suitable for young children. Just the way so many characters continually snarl at one another and flounce out of rooms slamming doors gives a very negative message to the young, let alone the unsettling effect of exposing them to the issues you mention. (I write as a retired primary school teacher and as a parent & grandparent.) I know that all this conflict is supposed to make interesting drama, but it also teaches patterns of behaviour that children would be better off not learning, and I am sure it can undermine their sense of security.

    • Fred H
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 9:12 am | Permalink

      Fedup…….correct, but Politics has its share of ‘subjects such as sex, extra marital sex, lesbians, gays, transexuals, violence, drugs and murder’.

      Little honesty, pride, responsibility but lots of the former list.

  78. Rhodas
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    Masterly inaction by Boris with EU is all that’s needed and we shall be out on Halloween. Just spend the time wisely from PM appointment on WTO leave planning and FTA preparation. And if course avoiding a general election will be the tricky part…

  79. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Now is Prime Minister May’s chance to sack her Chancellor.

    She would be doing her successor a favour, they wouldn’t have to do it

    • Iain Moore
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 7:31 am | Permalink

      She could do it , in fact should do it, but won’t , she is going to leave a political wasteland for her successor, and not help them in anyway. She should have withdrawn the NI bill yesterday to stop it being hijacked by Bercow, Benn Grieve and Letwin, but didn’t. Her search of a legacy is going to be very costly. One lesson from this is that no Prime Minister should ever be allowed to work out their notice, they resign , they are gone the next minute, with a caretaker is installed , they shouldn’t be allowed to hang around.

  80. Caterpillar
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    Hopefully looking forward to the restoration of the power sharing agreement in NI.

  81. Kenneth
    Posted July 18, 2019 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    I found it chilling that the eu apparently suggested to David Lidington that Brexit should be parked for 5 years.

    He said this knowing that millions of people had voted on this issue and had decided to leave.

    How could we even contemplate being part of a body that holds such contempt for democracy and for People?

  82. Peter D Gardner
    Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    Perhaps living in Australia gives me a clearer perspective than those caught up in the day to day minutiae of Brexit. I have read Mrs May’s WA and the EU’s plans and debates on its future. It was perfectly obvious to me that the WA was an extraordinary coup for the EU and that Mrs May was on the side of the EU from mid-late 2017. She wants supra-national government of the UK by the EU and sees it as superior to sovereign national democracy as can be embodied only in the nation state.
    Just consider the deal she agreed. It removes the UK from all EU institutions while the EU takes the next steps of ever closer union over the life of the new EU commission, culminating in new EU Treaties replacing the Lisbon Treaties in 2025. Meanwhile it holds UK aligned with EU regulation, prevents UK from branching out into new relationships outside the EU, prevents it restoring its full capacity for self-government, prevents UK taking enterprising and invigorating economic action and subjects UK’s defence capabilities (both industry and the armed services) to EU political control. Thus UK would be weakened and pre-qualified to accede to the new EU Treaties. Even better, UK could not escape the WA’s backstop other than by accession.
    No deal could possibly compare with May’s WA. It could not have been achieved without the co-operation of Mrs May and her advisers, as I argued in my articles for The Conservative Woman here:
    and here:
    The recent revelations by M Barnier and others confirm my view that Mrs May, since some point in 2017 has been working against the expressed desire of the British for independence and self-government. Quite why many weeks after she has resigned she is still able to trash UK with harmful legislation is beyond me. I thought caretaker prime ministers were supposed not to do anything.

    • Fred H
      Posted July 19, 2019 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      Peter….you demonstrate, if it were needed, that we have witnessed the most shocking devious plotting by a British PM, lying to the electorate, the H of C, the media. Traitor may be a harsh word to use, but it appears fitting to describe her actions. Being supposedly Christian, I wonder how she will make peace with her creator?

  83. Fred H
    Posted July 19, 2019 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    The latest twist?……
    A hard Brexit will come with “massively negative consequences for both sides”, the incoming chief of the European Commission has said. Ursula von der Leyen has refused to accept the Withdrawal Agreement is dead despite both contenders to be UK prime minister saying it needs wholesale changes.
    “No, it is a good agreement, which was negotiated properly in accordance with the red lines drawn by the British government,” she said.
    In an interview with a number of UK media outlets, Ms Von der Leyen said: “A Brexit without a deal comes with massively negative consequences for both sides, not to mention what it means for Ireland.
    “That’s why we need to do everything to strive for an orderly Brexit. And that’s why if there are good reasons for an extension coming from our British friends, I am open to listening.” Her comments were echoed by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, who stressed there would be absolutely no changes to the Irish backstop or the Withdrawal Agreement.

  • 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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