Getting Brexit done

I do want the next Parliament to complete our exit from the EU  so we can move on. The uncertainty deliberately generated by the Remain majority in the last Parliament was harmful . Too many MPs pushed out negative views about the result of simply taking back control of our laws, our money and our borders. Too many MPs elected on a ticket of supporting Brexit spent the whole of the last Parliament trying to delay or stop it altogether.

Let us be clear about the Conservative Manifesto and my views on Brexit. I have not signed any secret deal as some here suggest. I do  support  the national Conservative Manifesto as  it states

  1. There will be no extension to the Implementation period
  2. We will take back control of our laws and our money
  3. We will be out of the single market and customs union, with our own trade policy
  4. We will have full control of our fishing waters
  5. We will introduce a UK immigration policy

The public now have the opportunity to elect a  new Parliament that will carry out their wish to leave the EU. Nigel Farage made a difficult decision for him not to stand in  seats which the Conservatives won the last time. The revised Political Declaration sets out how we will leave and base our future relationship on a Free Trade Agreement, not a customs partnership or surrogate single market membership.

The Conservative MPs who last time broke their promises on Brexit have now joined the Lib Dems, or retired, or are standing as Independents in favour of overturning Brexit or pressing for a much closer relationship with the EU than Leavers want.

The Conservative party would have liked the Brexit party to also stand down in all those seats which the Conservatives have the best chance of winning from other parties. Just winning the 317 seats Conservatives  won last time is not sufficient to form a majority government.  The Conservatives did not feel as a national party with a realistic chance of winning a majority they could stand down candidates in various parts of the country. As a result the Brexit party felt there was  no reciprocation, whilst the Conservatives are keen to avoid the  Brexit party splitting the Leave vote in some important cases.

All this is made much more complicated by the fact that this is a General election and Jeremy Corbyn is widely assumed to  be the alternative Prime Minister to Boris Johnson as the polls indicate. The General election is not a re run of the EU referendum though some people will cast their vote  on the basis of their  views of Brexit. The Conservatives are the only party which can prevent a Labour government led by Mr Corbyn from winning and taking over. The Greens, Lib Dem’s, SNP and Plaid are all in favour of stopping or delaying Brexit so only a Conservative Government with a Commons majority can deliver taking back control of our laws, our money and our borders. The Lib Dems and SNP  have stated that in a hung Parliament they would not allow Conservatives to form a government.

That is why many Brexit party members decided it was best to settle for Mr Johnson’s approach to Brexit and to back him. To lose Brexit and end up with Mr Corbyn as PM would be a double blow which many are not prepared to risk. That is why Nigel Farage decided it best not to stand in 317 seats. In these seats it would have been very difficult for Brexit to win, but in some marginal seats  easy to allow a pro Remain candidate to win from another party by splitting the Brexit vote.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.


  1. Peter Wood
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    Good Morning,

    You made a very strong case TO come to an arrangement with TBP. They only want 10 or 15 seats so letting them fight in the leave voting, strong Labour seats, and getting TBP to not fighting the rest, seems a very fair deal.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      They’re no more giving the full picture than is John here.

      Ceasing to be a member of the European Union is not getting anything “done”.

      It is in fact only the start, of very long and difficult negotiations, on trade and on many other things, and also of domestic arguments, as to how best to mitigate the often very serious effects of what has happened and is yet to happen.

      • Hope
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:39 am | Permalink

        JR, Michael Gove govt minster back stabbed and stopped a Johnson Brexit. Not Parliament, not Brexit Party or any one else. That is why he is absent in this campaign.

        Cameron followed by Mayhab and Johnson have all failed to deliver the will of the people and defied the largest ever public mandate to leave the EU.

        Traitors to our country Tory MPs like Mayhab, Letwin, Grieve, Soubry, Vazey, Gauke, Lee, Wollaston, Milton, Allen, Clarkex 2, Hammond etc. They got elected three times to deliver Brexit!

        CCHQ select all your left wing liberal candidates giving associations their pro EU choice of three. That is why so many defected to the anti democrats and why traitors of old tell the public to vote for them! CCHQ rigged the selection system against conservatism! Pity your party has not reversed socialism throughout public service and judiciary selection to high office.

        If not for the Brexit Party the country would have been stitched up and betrayed by your left wing Tory govt. You lot would have voted for Mayhab’s servitude plan.

        Stop your specious rot for electioneering it discredits you. Your views in the main are heartily accepted by your readers but this blog borders on deceitful nonsense. Your manifesto only tries to rectify some of the failures it caused!

        • Hope
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

          JR, point four not true. Your leader on Sky today repeated several times in nuance terms, potential to get back, have better share of our fish! Potential, fair share, FFS stop promulgating utter rot about take back control when it does exist which your PM and EU dismisses!

      • Andy
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink

        Indeed. Get Brexit Done is a fantastic slogan. But it is just a slogan.

        It follows on from no deal is better than a bad deal, Brexit means Brexit and Take Back Control – but is as meaningless as all of them.

        Brexiteers do not appear to have realised that the day we leave the EU is not the end of this tortuous process. It is the start of it. You now have to actually make the country better. If you don’t – and I see no indication at all that you will – then Brexit will have failed.

        And most of you have not even begun to realise some of the exceptionally painful compromises you are going to have to make. And you need to understand that for each and every one of those you Brexiteers are all to blame. We will not let you forget.

        • NickC
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

          Andy, There is no requirement to compromise independence. None. Most nations in the world are independent. Why do you think that the UK can’t be?

          • Andy
            Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

            The UK is already independent. Why do you think it isn’t?

          • Edward2
            Posted December 10, 2019 at 7:45 am | Permalink

            Read the Lisbon and Mastricht treaties.

          • bill brown
            Posted December 10, 2019 at 11:43 am | Permalink


            members of the EU are independent nation states who become members and remain independent , you can read as many treaties as you wish it does not change the written facts

          • NickC
            Posted December 10, 2019 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

            Andy, Why do I know the UK is not independent in the EU? Because of Declaration 17 (Lisbon), as I have told you frequently. How dim do you have to be to either not confirm that yourself, or do so and still lie about it?

          • Edward2
            Posted December 10, 2019 at 6:43 pm | Permalink

            The ECJ is supreme to our courts.
            Laws regulations directives made by the EU become law in the UK.
            Your idea of independence are very different to the idea that non EU nation states believe in.
            For example, Canada and America share a border and share many other things on a mutually advantageous voluntary basis.
            But they are fiercely independent nation states.

      • Gordon Nottingham
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:44 am | Permalink

        Hi M in C. May be so, but if I was negotiating at the first sign of feet dragging by the EU I would WALK on WTO, no £39 billion or ANY other bills.

      • IanT
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:51 am | Permalink

        There is absolutely no version of Brexit that would be worse then a Corbyn Government Martin. I understand that you are a Remainer but do you really want to see a Communist Government in this country for the first time ever?

      • Denis Cooper
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:01 am | Permalink

        What about joining the EEC in 1973?

        Was that getting something “done”?

        If so, why are we now in the EU, rather than the EEC, and still heading for the USE – federal United States of Europe – if we stay in?

      • NickC
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:07 am | Permalink

        Martin, Ceasing to be part of the EU is indeed getting something done – re-aquiring our independence from your corrupt anti-democratic empire. The only way we can pursue freedom is to walk away from our erstwhile bureaucratic conqueror, not kowtow to it as you advocate.

        We must treat the EU as we do China or Russia: states that we must have a relationship with, and trade with, but not trust, or get close to. We should also institute policies to try to dismantle the EU, since it is a danger to ourselves, to Europe and indeed the world.

        • Fairweather
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

          Boris is sounding so boring with his posts on Facebook with his mantra get Brexit done
          Almost as bad as the maybot slogan strong and stable government
          He needs to spell out all the dangers of being in the and in the future

          Missing opportunities

      • Edward2
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:19 am | Permalink

        Meanwhile trade just will carry on.
        For example
        Japan only recently signed a trade deal with the EU
        Yet for decades traded successfully in Europe and UK.

        Having spent decades importing and exporting I never found much difference in trading with EU and non EU nations.

      • L Jones
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

        You overlook the fact, M-in-C, that we actually don’t NEED any sort of ”deal” to free ourselves from your revered EU.
        Some say it’s preferable to have a ”trade deal” (though that can be negotiated after our leaving) but any other sort of ”deal” is not required.
        How much have you read about the requirements of countries wishing to leave the EU? And – do tell – why should your EU masters make it so difficult for us to leave this ”club” if we wish to, especially as we’re prepared to offer a huge ex gratia bung in doing so?
        The words ”cow” and ”milch” spring to mind.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:26 am | Permalink

      It was indeed and the Conservative should have taken it. It would have been far better for the country and a far safer way to avoid the dire risk of Corby/SNP

  2. Mark B
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    That is why many Brexit party members decided it was best to settle for Mr Johnson’s approach to Brexit . . .

    I would not call 4 former BXP members ‘many’.

    The standing down of BXP candidates in Remain Tory areas was a mistake. The Tories, who have never won seats in certain areas have run candidates and are therefore deliberately splitting the Leave vote, threatening BREXIT and supporting Labour. The Tories do not want anyone that will challenge them and their disgusting WA / EU Treaty.

    The WA / EU Treaty does not get BREXIT done. It just kicks the can further down the road. We will still have freedom of movement. The EU will still have access to our waters. And we will still be paying into their budget. They will have all they want and we will have nothing. There will be a Customs Union down the Irish Sea between NI and the rUK. The SNP and Scotland will be demanding Indy’ Ref’ 2.0 or similar arrangements to that of NI. The whole thing is a pigs breakfast design to destroy Euroscepticism and not deliver o the referendum result of 2016.

    No one is fooled and this is an utter sham !

    • Simeon
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:13 am | Permalink

      Good morning.

      Agreed. Some further points in support, addressing Sir John’s points;

      1. No extension to implementation period necessary if FTA agreed quickly – posdible if minimal/nominal changes to existing relationship, i.e NO BREXIT! In this light, a believable promise.

      2. We take back control only to give it away again in an instant would be one way of putting it.

      3. We will be out of THE Single Market and THE Customs Union, only to be in a new single market and new customs union. We will be masters of our own trade policy, but our options will be massively limited by our intimate relationship with the EU.

      4. We will have full control of our fishing waters, therefore allowing us to trade them away in the FTA negotiations as a price for full alignment.

      5. Immigration policy will be new. I don’t doubt that. But then a new, quite different, immigration policy is possible without leaving the EU.

      Conservative pronouncements on future policy are apparently contradictory when seen through the lens of a true Brexit. However, they acquire a surprising coherence when seen through the lens of BRINO/Remain. It is still, obviously, a gross deception, and an utter sham!

      • L Jones
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:43 am | Permalink

        This is what we all fear, Simeon – double speak.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

        Your dreamed-of “true” exit from the European Union is like imagining that after running a family business together, pooling resources, and having children, getting divorced would be like never having been married in the first place.

        It does not, anywhere, exist.

        • Simeon
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

          Unwise choice of analogy. Generally, a decision is made to divorce, THEN to work out who gets the dog. You break up, then you work out the future relationship.

          I am familiar with your views, though I don’t comment on them. I doubt I’ll change your mind.

        • NickC
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

          Martin, Being in the EU is not a marriage, there are no children, and we’re not “getting divorced”. UK departure from the EU is no different in principle to India or Canada ceasing to be part of the British empire.

        • Edward2
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

          Many couples who split, then develop a decent relationship for the sake of their common good.
          There is no reason a post Brexit relationship cannot also be friendly and mutually advantageous for the UK and the EU.

        • mancunius
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

          No, it will be like a divorce. An essential one. There are no ‘children’.
          It is always a relief and even a pleasure to part with such a controlling and menacing spouse as the EU has become.
          Like other abusive spouses, Juncker, Barnier, Merkel, Macron etc might care to reflect that if their behaviour had not been so appallingly selfish, arrogant and aggressive, over such a protracted period, things would have turned out better for them.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      Sir John,

      You make no mention of the WA above. Is this because support for it is assumed? And if your desire is to table ammendments to make it more palatable, can you confirm that these ammendments would not be ‘wrecking’, and would therefore be acceptable to the EU? (I accept that ANY ammendment to the WA may not be acceptable to the EU – unless it is one that costs the EU nothing, eg. remaining in THE Single Market.)

      Reply The sovereignty clause will be an important part of the debates.

      • Simeon
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:18 am | Permalink

        Reply to reply

        The suggestion that there will be any serious debate doesn’t tally with ‘oven ready’ pronouncements. Your party’s leadership clearly intend to rubberstamp the WA. Indeed, young Rishi has said that a Conservative government would have no need to continue ‘No Deal’ preparations, because the outline of a trade deal is ready. It’s difficult, putting it mildly, to see how the sovereignty clause will be a important part of the debates, unless there’s a plan to remove it in the event of a decent majority, which might cause some disquiet, but no serious debate because of a lack of numbers to seriously object.

      • Mark B
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        Reply to reply

        Yes I am sure much of the WA will be part of debates. But I doubt not a single comma, fullstop, letter, word, sentence or paragraph can or will be changed. It is a take it or Leave it treaty much like the Treaty of Rome was way back when and all the others since.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      You write, as if abject cynicism, towards the most enlightened project for the advancement of civilisation that this sadly troubled world has ever seen were a good thing.

      • sm
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:28 am | Permalink

        It has become a religion to you, hasn’t it, Martin? You ignore the turmoil of political/financial/judicial/administrative incompetence and hypocrisy across the EU with breathtaking naivety.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

          You claim that the perfect should rightly be the fatal enemy of the good.

          European wars resulted in scores of millions of dead each century prior to the European Union.

          It’s like claiming that smallpox is better than having to trouble yourself one iota to go for a vaccine.

          • Edward2
            Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

            Another very poor analogy Martin.

      • Al
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:35 am | Permalink

        “the most enlightened project for the advancement of civilisation” – Martin in Cardiff

        A nice paraphrase of Woodrow Wilson but, I’m sorry to tell you, the League of Nations was dissolved in 1946.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:28 am | Permalink

        I assume you are being satirical!

      • L Jones
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:39 am | Permalink

        ”.. the most enlightened project..” Most certainly it is, for those at the top of the tree. I’m sure people said that about pyramid selling and Ponzi schemes too.
        Our cynicism is not ‘abject’ – it is enlightened.

      • Anonymous
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:58 am | Permalink

        IF you mean by ‘enlightened’ that we have been well informed then the EU project has been shrouded in mystery and deceit from its inception – designed by a Frenchman who wanted to stop Germany invading his country yet again.

        If you mean by ‘enlightened’ that the EU is modernist then there is nothing modern about a land mass being ruled from its centre in a notionally democratic way.

      • NickC
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:13 am | Permalink

        Martin, Your abject cynicism towards our freedom from your corrupt EU empire is definitely not enlightened.

    • Johnny Dubb
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:10 am | Permalink

      You and Shirley (here below) speak for millions.
      As I wrote yesterday, when my Tory MP (as was) is off campaigning against BXP, in a Labour area, with zero chance of a Tory win, the intention to stop BXP is obvious. This from a party who claim to want Brexit.
      Tories would rather hand a seat to Labour than have BXP in parliament!
      Just think about that!

      • Stred
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:39 am | Permalink

        Tory snobs regard Brexit Party supporters as lower order upstarts and unsuitable for government and then pinch some of their policies. They will not, however, pinch the reform of the House of Cronies, as they hope to become cronies themselves when they are rejected. Brexit supporters like myself, as AA grade professional and business owners regard the Cameroon professional politicians and their weirdo gurus as a bunch of incompetent lying spivs. There was never any chance of a partnership. Trump, as an American, can’t understand the class warfare and thought he could bring two people that he liked together.

    • Al
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:28 am | Permalink

      As a Leave supporter with a choice of Remainer Tory, or Remain Alliance (Lib Dem, Labour, or Green) thanks to the Brexit Party’s withdrawal, I think I shall be hoping for Monster Raving Loony on the ballot paper.

      As for the manifesto, the caveats kill it for me. There is no point in “taking control of our fishing waters” if we then allow the current situation to continue. While I am glad you will “have an immigration policy”, along with education, health, etc, it means nothing to voters if you don’t tell us what that policy will be. If we have “control of our laws and money”, but these are still kept in lockstep with Europe, there’s no practical difference in Europe having direct control.

      Now if you tell us what the conservatives plan to change in these areas, that would be far more informative. Our local canvassers seem to focusing on the line that “Nothing will change”. This is not inspiring.

      Reply We have set out the migration policy which will remove the flow of unskilled and low skilled migrants from the EU unless there is a special need in a particular industry for a particular scarcity.

      • Hope
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

        Utter rot JR. the latest immigration figures shows only 50,000 from the EU the other 150,000 outside the EU. This was against your govt policy and three manifesto promises. The 150,000 could and should have been stopped as they pay less in tax than receive in benefits!

    • IanT
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:59 am | Permalink

      You lot need to decide what you really want. This election is now about getting a Johnson or Corbyn Government – not about Brexit

      I’m not a great fan of Boris Johnson but the alternative would be a complete nightmare.

      Wake up and get real! Do you want the Marxists in charge of this country? Corbyn and his ‘kindly old man’ act may fool the young – but look behind him and see McDonald and his chums waiting to drive this country back to Year Zero.

      • Mark B
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:19 pm | Permalink


        You clearly have never read any of my posts otherwise, you would have not tried this trick on me. Being deliberately offered the least worst candidate is no choice at all, and I am as likely to vote for a Marxist than I am to be bullied into voting for a traitor and his oven ready EU Treaty. Just so you know 😉

  3. Pominoz
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    Most contributors to your site would fully acclaim the five points you detail as to why you support the Conservative manifesto. It is, however, certain ‘hangover’ elements of May’s disastrous WA which Boris has not openly disavowed, which continue to worry true Brexiteers.

    We can only hope that, when a working majority has been achieved, he promptly tells the EU to get stuffed and that he is leaving on 31st January on WTO terms. The ‘transition’ period is only there so that an FTA can be negotiated. No negotiation is needed if we leave on WTO terms, neither is payment of £39 billion.

    Such a clean Brexit delivers all of Boris’s promises. leaves you satisfied and will enable the UK to demonstrate it’s ability to truly perform on the world stage.

    I wish you well this Thursday. It is essential you are returned to keep the Conservative Party honest.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:02 am | Permalink

      Exactly. as you say:- We can only hope that, when a working majority has been achieved, he promptly tells the EU to get stuffed and that he is leaving on 31st January on WTO terms. Free of the Benn Surender act and with a majority that is the way to go.

      But a Corbyn/SNP government would be a compete disaster for Brexit, the Union, our nuclear defence (and defence in general), Northern Ireland, Scotland, England, for tax payers, our economy, the currency, our public services, for investment, the NHS, out private schools and our state schools, the rich and the poor alike.

      Let us hope most voters see this and can see through is dishonest promises/bribes of everything for everyone all paid for by the top 5% who will have left or stopped working so hard.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:30 am | Permalink

        I missed out Wales, it would be a disaster for them too.

    • ian terry
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:27 am | Permalink


      keep the Conservative Party honest.

      Thats one hell of a big ask if you take the last three years into consideration.

      Like the party and the country real change has got to be implemented, if not we will remain on the road to nowhere

    • L Jones
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:35 am | Permalink

      Pominoz – Mr J (and others) did appear to disavow them on the site:
      by saying he would ”abandon TM’s WA as dead”.

  4. Shirley
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    We voters are between a rock and a hard place. We have heard all this before, and the opposite happened. The Conservatives (as a whole) defied their manifesto promises. The Conservatives were willing to sign us up to a vassalage treaty. Not accidentally, but deliberately. Why should we believe their promises now? You reap what you sow.

    Even though I am an ardent Brexiter I would rather Remain in the EU than become a vassal state of the EU. If Boris rejects the WA2, then I may change my opinion but will I gamble on the possibility? No! The Brexit Party (and other eurosceptic parties) are the only ones offering Leave, as voted for by millions.

    We don’t need to sign up to disgusting one sided (and utterly ridiculous) terms in order to Leave the EU. No other ‘free’ country would sign those terms.

    The world is watching. Do we still have a democracy? It appears not, when the alternatives are restricted to Brino or Remain. I am sick to death of democracy being sidelined, or manipulated, by the mainstream parties.

    • Andy
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:06 am | Permalink

      You voted for Brexit – and Johnson’s deal is Brexit. You can’t moan about it now. It is entirely the fault of people like you. And this is as good as it gets. Brexit will only get worse for you from here on. We did tell you. But you knew best.

      • NickC
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

        Andy, Read Johnson’s “deal”. You will see that the UK remains controlled by the EU and subject to the ECJ until the Boris WA expires – see Articles 4, 87, 89, 127, to start with. Clearly it is not Brexit, and your continuing claim otherwise, without evidence, merely shows you up as uninformed. We would need to be as independent of the EU as New Zealand is for the WA to be Brexit. The earliest that could happen is 31 Dec 2020. If we’re lucky.

      • Chris
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        Johnson’s deal is NOT Brexit, Andy. It is a tweaked May WA and PD concoction which does not fool Brexiteers. That is why Boris is not going to get a resounding victory, but merely a small majority or hung Parliament.

    • ian terry
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:22 am | Permalink


      Well said: You are speaking for thousands

      • Chris
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        Absolutely, it.

    • glen cullen
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      fully agree with your comments…..we WILL become a vassal state under this WA2

    • Timaction
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:47 am | Permalink


    • Chris
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

      Very good post, Shirley.

  5. Ian Wragg
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    I am going to print this off and haunt you with it when it doesn’t happen.
    The WA allows none of this.
    Why do we need a transition period when nothing actually happens.

    • Mark B
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:22 am | Permalink

      Good idea. I think I’ll do the same. In fact, I think we should all do it.

    • agricola
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      I suspect but I do not know that the Conservative party made a tactical error in not leaving many labour leave constituencies to the Brexit party to fight. Nigel Farage took the pragmatic high moral ground in this election. The conservatives failed to reciprocate. Was it because they feared their power might be dependant on a Brexit party with a much more positive attitude to leaving the EU than themselves. Whatever the CP manifesto says we know from experience that manifestos are not worth the paper they are written on. It all comes down to the preparedness of Boris to play hardball within a strict timetable, or indulging himself with WA2 which is a road to nowhere. As an opener I would tell the EU that the Irish border will be electronic. If they want a hard border they can have one in Eire. Criminality will be dealt with as in the past. Individuals coming from Eire to mainland UK will be checked at our ports of entry. If they are coming to fill a work vacancy fine, if not they are tourists on limited rights of entry.

      Bare in mind that an incoming government is not bound by the last three shambolic years. They have a clean sheet if in a majority so I exlect them to start acting like a sovereign government. The EU need to be taught some hard lessons about democracy.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:30 am | Permalink

      We should also note the wording of the ”pledge” on – and those who signed this.
      There are obviously a few who intend to honour this – but if they’ve also pledged to support BJ’s new-old-new-old WA, then they seem to be hedging their pledges.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      Why indeed do we need a transition period?

      • agricola
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

        We do not need a transition period. On 31st January 2020 we could leave on WTO terms while at the same time offering the EU a FTA. If by mutual agreement we offered continuity of current trading arrangements under Art 24 of GATT we could then transit for up to ten years totally free to trade with the World and enjoying all the other freedoms that sovereignty brings. The failure of our side to grasp this makes me highly suspicious of the motives of our political leaders. They are not idiots so what are they really up to.

    • glen cullen
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      As I understand it the transitional period isn’t for business, society nor the general public….its for MPs to get to grips with the fact that they are now accountable and it will take a year to inform all the civil servants…..what have they been doing for the past 3.5yrs…..every company I work with was ready 6mths after the referendum ? Oven ready it should have been baked by now.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:12 am | Permalink

      Please explain the bit in the WA which gives EU citizens who are already here including during the transition period, super citizen status including their heirs and family. Qualifying for the whole panoply of benefits and social housing overseen by the ECJ.
      Where does that sit within your immigration plan.

  6. Stred
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    Tory MPs who voted against leaving on WTO ‘no deal’ terms and pulled the carpet from the negotiation, such as T. Elwood are standing in large numbers and are even put on to the media to promote leaving on the May tweak. The manifesto also promises green impractical policies and PC claptrap. This will put off many conservative thinking voters who voted Conservative and Labour all of their lives. Central Office and the Cameroon clique have ballsed up again.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:35 am | Permalink

      The tory party is a complete let down John. My chance to vote BP has been taken away so I am left with your sham of Brexit which was not what we voted for. You are all an undemocratic disgrace not fit to govern and have made a mess of this country. Putting it mildly I am pig sick of the lot of you. I am not such an ardent reader of your posts anymore knowing that Brexit is fake. Politics ain’nt what it used to be and the Tory party is a shadow of its former self.

      • Stred
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:17 am | Permalink

        It’s not SJR’s fault. It must be like going to a football match to support your lifelong team and finding that the manager is making all the wrong moves and the other fans are behaving like the last time the team was banned for bad behaviour.

      • Sue W
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        This “Fed up Northerner”couldn’t agree more!

    • Turboterrier
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Central Office and the Cameroon clique have ballsed up again.

      You have it in a nut shell. Until the party heirachy wake up and smell the real coffee and give the people candidates with experience and qualificaions of life as oppossed to political degrees, who are more than just “career politicians” the people will always end up with what we have had for the last couple of decades.

      Theis on going circle must be broken and the whole of the selection process completely reinvented to bring parliament into the 21st century

    • Bob
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:18 am | Permalink

      The Tory Party is rammed with Remainers
      The WA is clearly not Brexit, it’s a Con trick. They’re hoping that BRINO will spike the Brexiteer’s guns and things will quieten down, allowing them to continue with regulatory alignment and eventually rehabilitation and full submission.

      I suspect that our erudite host cannot be more outspoken about this fact at his juncture due to his fears of the catastrophic consequences of a Lib/Lab/SNP coalition now that Hugh Grant has joined in campaigning for the socialists.

  7. margaret
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    I have already voted by post. It saves that trail to the local school and anxiety if late from somewhere. The past has demonstrated that what ever we have voted for , the figure heads and the manifestos mean very little.The localities will implement change the way they want to and Brexit dealings show us that on a national level the manipulations will continue.
    I have voted as is my nature and original intent of differing ideologies,

    • Stred
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:42 am | Permalink

      So will many students and people with multiple addresses, twice.

      • Bob
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:38 am | Permalink

        Why are the Tories afraid to tackle voter fraud?

        • JoolsB
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

          Unbelievable isn’t it Bob? Postal voting has gone up from 2% to 20% since Labour introduced it and is rife with fraud, which is why Labour introduced it in the first place, and the Tories have done absolutely nothing to address it.

        • Chris
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

          Things will never change unless they adversely affect the ruling Party. For some very strange reason, the “Cons” do not seem to want a truly Conservative government which could deliver true Brexit and enable a truly independent UK to prosper and become truly global, instead of being hamstrung by the bureaucratic moribund monster that is the EU. They apparently are happy with a left liberal type government agenda, with very close ties with and alignments to the EU i.e. not leaving at all. The vassal state agreement which Boris has promoted is not Brexit.

      • Doug Powell
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:20 am | Permalink

        After the last GE, when there were rumours about students voting twice, I wrote to the electoral Commission to ask if it was possible to check this. Below is the most telling section of their reply:

        “Electoral registers are held at the local level by Electoral Registration Officers appointed by each local authority in Great Britain, and by the Chief Electoral Officer in Northern Ireland. There is currently no centrally compiled database of local electoral registers, which means that there is no system in place to automatically identify those electors who are included in more than one register.”

        So, the position is that anyone registered in multiple constituencies can vote with impunity as long as he/she keeps his/her mouth shut!
        Bring on a central database of electors!

        • Stred
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

          Exactly.. We have seen someone who posted his Labour vote at home and has had a flat for work in the City, where he pays council tax and can vote in a Labour constituency.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:37 am | Permalink

        Indeed, but if you have multiple addresses and obey the law (by voting only once) your vote still can be far more powerful than other peoples. This as you are more likely to be able to choose to vote in a marginal seat – where your vote might actually make a difference.

        One vote each, but only votes in marginals have any power.

  8. Dominic
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    What a dreadful article. You’re worth far more than than this Mr Redwood.

  9. Martin in Cardiff
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    In your list of points you use the indicative mood of the verb, John.

    This should be conditional, “would”, not “will”, as those aspirations are largely contingent upon to what the European Union would agree to offset the otherwise disastrous effects of some of them.

    So to pretend then, that this country is in a position to dictate terms is all rather Walter Mitty and silly, I think.

    • L Jones
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

      You obviously have never noticed, M-in-C, that the conditional isn’t generally used by a political party when setting out its manifesto.
      It might be ”silly” as you see it – but Sir John is only following an established custom.

      • Fred H
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

        well who want a clear unambiguous committment to do what is promised in a manifesto, heavens above – no escape possible?

    • Edward2
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:24 am | Permalink

      Who actually said anything about a wish to ” dictate terms”
      You create your own made up phrase and then comment on it

    • NickC
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

      Martin, Your advocating that the EU continues to control the UK is more than silly. Anyone with any sense will walk away from a trading partner which demands control over us in exchange for trade, rather than trade for trade.

  10. Nig l
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:21 am | Permalink

    Let us not forget the MPs who were voted in on a manifesto last time and then reneged on it. Why should it not happen again?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:40 am | Permalink

      It is quite likely too. Four so called “Conservatives” who are standing voted for the Benn act I understand.

  11. Richard1
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    This election is in effect another referendum on Brexit. The Tory manifesto doesn’t have much of interest in it, it’s been designed not to allow any attack lines likely to put off pro-Brexit labour voters. It is certainly not ‘right wing’.

    On the other hand the Tory manifesto is very clear that there will be Brexit if there is a tory majority. All the other parties except for Farage’s are opposed to Brexit, inc Labour who’s policy would certainly result in remain if implemented.

    So any result other than a clear Conservative majority would mean that the Country has rejected Brexit. If this is the result – eg a hung parliament – there will be many voters (including me) who are currently happy to support Boris’s deal – who will then say in such circs we should just revoke article 50 and forget Brexit and do the best we can from within the EU. This is because there will be no chance of such a Parliament voting through any sort of Brexit which would allow the potential and claimed advantages of Brexit to be realised.

    Anyone who says they support Brexit but is thinking of voting anything other than Conservative should bear this in mind.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

      I think I’m going to have to give you the ‘Andy’ treatment Tory Boy.

  12. Robert Valence
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    “Nigel Farage made a difficult decision for him not to stand in seats which the Conservatives won the last time.”
    “The Conservatives did not feel as a national party with a realistic chance of winning a majority they could stand down candidates in various parts of the country. As a result the Brexit party felt there was no reciprocation”
    Yup – Nigel acted for the good of the country & to ensure that BREXIT was done or at least attempted; the Conservatives acted for the good of the Party and hang the country.
    Most impressive..

    • Shirley
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:37 am | Permalink


    • Simeon
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

      Nigel did not act for the good of the country by sinking the Brexit Party and effectively endorsing the Tory party. He made a massive, fatal mistake.

      • forthurst
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

        Farage may have been put under intense pressure from his own party consisting of erstwhile Tories who still see politics in this country as a contest between ‘left’ and ‘right’ and not between patriots and globalists or the right of the English to their own country versus the ‘right’ of the third world to invade us based on ‘skills we need’.

        • Simeon
          Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

          I don’t doubt that Farage endured serious pressure. I have sympathy for him. But one is not supposed to sympathise with the plight of political leaders. One is supposed to look up to and admire them as they demonstrate the strength and fortitude to hold firm. Sympathy for a leader means they are no longer a leader. He achieved so much, which is why it is such a pity that he made that mistake.

          • forthurst
            Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

            I have no sympathy. The first time was a learning experience with UKIP where all the Tories eventually left; the second time therefore was totally predictable.

      • Matt Ryan
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

        Agree. No way I’m voting for the useless Tory MP in Calder Valley. Brexit party has stood down, so spoilt ballot.

  13. Adrian Lloyd
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    The Brexit Party has put forward very specific criticisms of Boris’ ‘deal’.

    They say the deal means Brexit in name only.

    It would be very helpful to know why you think those criticisms are wrong.

    • Nig l
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      Yes. We had forensic analysis of Mays deal, but acceptance of Boris’ almost without criticism yet I read it is not much different. Even Martin Howes muted his comments. He was hoping to be selected as a prospective MP. Surely that wouldn’t have had anything to do with it?

    • L Jones
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      Mr Lloyd – it certainly would be helpful. As you say, the criticisms have been very specific, and not just from the Brexit Party.
      To hear ‘specific’ refutations in reply to these criticisms from someone whose word we trust – ie that of our host – would be more than just helpful.
      This is a defining moment, and we don’t seem to have all the information we need to make the right choice. Perhaps ‘a sudden gleam will make plain in one great moment what we have not seen’!

  14. GilesB
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    The Brexit Party have shown character and principle by standing down in seats held by Conservatives. Although I don’t think they should have stood down where the candidate is an open or closer Remainer. I understand why as a matter of bureaucratic principle the Conservative Party apparatchiks wanted to stand everywhere, a statesman as a leader would have found a way to give the Brexit Party a free run in a dozen seats.

    The Brexit party can have a significant impact in this election by attracting from Labour leave voters who will never ever vote Conservative. Of course we’d like them to vote Conservative, but they won’t. Getting them to NOT VOTE LABOUR can lead to many gained seats.

    Looking beyond the election is for next week.

    But I will note your five points and expect full delivery of them if Boris has a double figure majority. Only if he has a majority of more than thirty, can he tear up the Withdrawal Agreement.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      A Brexit deal was indeed the better way for Boris & the Conservatives to go. It would have benefited both parties and have been more likely to produce a sensible pro-Brexit real Conservative majority.

    • Simeon
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

      This myth needs debunking. If BJ were elected on the basis of passing the WAB, but then tore it up, there would rightly be outrage from not just a sizeable proportion of the electorate, but a sizeable poportion of the Parliamentary party. This plan wouldn’t work, because Parliament wouldn’t allow it! I’m quite sure BJ is aware of this, despite it being an irrelevance, because he has absolutely no intention of giving up his ‘great deal’. It really is that simple.

  15. George Brooks
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    A really decent majority and we can hand the WA back to the EU and leave on 31st January.

    Anything less and we will end up in a similar mess in parliament that triggered this election.

    ALL the other parties want to wreck Brexit and with it, this country. They should be ashamed of themselves for promoting self interest and not the National interest

    • L Jones
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      Yes, indeed, Mr Brooks – WE would do so most certainly. But unfortunately WE’re in the hands of others, and we really don’t know if they’re safe ones.
      What an appalling choice in this election – having to vote against something we fear, rather than for something we truly believe in.
      We can only hope for the best, that Mr BJ is honourable and doesn’t put the interests of his ”friends in the EU” before those of his own country. What rejoicing there would be!

  16. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Laws money and BORDERS.
    Tell us how we are taking back control of our NI/EU border please.

    Reply The Conservative set out our proposed immigration policy yesterday

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      NI remains in the Customs Union and there is no real prospect of them being released as there is a majority for a United Ireland. The Tory Party are no longer the Unionist party.

    • Hope
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:14 am | Permalink

      The Tory party has had it in its manifesto three times JR, get real. It is bordering on the dishonest. Last year the Tory govt. could have kept it last three manifesto promises to cut immigration to hundreds of thousands. Only 50,000 came from the EU and 150,000 outside! What do you not understand?

    • NickC
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply: Sir Joe was asking about the control of our side of the NI/EU border, not immigration.

  17. Lifelogic
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    Your five point are fine but the deal does not achieve them.

    You say The Conservative MPs who last time broke their promises on Brexit have now joined the Lib Dems, or retired, or are standing as Independents in favour of overturning Brexit or pressing for a much closer relationship with the EU than Leavers want.

    Not alas all of them! Why was the whip restored to 10 of the 21 traitors and some of them were appallingly even allowed to stand again? This so as to harm the next Conservative government and try again to kill Brexit one assumes. We need a majority sufficient to overcome any traitors who may still be there as Conservative MPs on Friday.

    • Hope
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      Well said LL. another back track by Johnson. What happens if there is a hung parliament.mcould he rely on the traitors he allowed back in? Greg Clarke never did explain his Toyota spin to scare people and never used his position to leave the EU as promised by his party and govt.

    • BOF
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:59 am | Permalink

      Excellent point LL which raises the question of trust, something which is likely to cost many votes on Thursday.

  18. Cheshire Girl
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    This is off topic. I apologise for it, but I’m so angry:

    On the BBC website just now: Police launch Counter Terrorism training for the public, urging us to become ‘CT Citizens’ (sorry, I don’t know how to post a link).

    So, it has come to this.
    I was born in 1939, and apart from the IRA, there was no terrorism in this country, that I know of. I worked in London for a time.

    The public are now urged to take a course in how to protect themselves in public places.

    This is the reason, along with others, that I shall not be voting for any of the main parties in the coming GE.

  19. Lifelogic
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Four of the 21 Benn act traitors (which was pure treachery against the UK’s interests and help endure the Boris deal is so poor) are being allowed to stand again as fake ‘Conservative’ candidates. Why? Let us hope his effective majority is rather more than 8. Many others are extremely suspect too.

  20. Kevin
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    “The Conservatives are the only party which can prevent a Labour government…. The Lib Dems and SNP have stated that…they would not allow Conservatives to form a government.”

    If it is possible for more than one party to prevent a Conservative government, then it should be possible for several parties – the Conservatives, the Brexit Party and the DUP, for instance – to join forces to stop a Labour government. Of course, the DUP did reach an agreement with the Conservatives in the last Parliament. Given that a majority of Conservative MPs voted for Theresa May’s deal in every single meaningful vote, it seems that the Party’s dependence on the DUP is what saved us from already being a “vassal state”. The People’s Vote must be implemented, but it is against the spirit of the referendum for it to be absorbed into one party’s political and economic outlook. The Brexit Party was explicitly formed as a cross-party movement. Why is it that the opponents of a clean-break, Leave the EU Brexit can contemplate a “government of national unity”, but the Conservatives cannot? The Peterborough by-election is a model of what could happen. The Brexit Party would surely have taken the seat comfortably if the Conservatives had stood down. Do not present us with the absurd situation of a majority Conservative government voting through a Withdrawal Agreement that their own leader twice voted against.

  21. Fred H
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    You write – ‘I do support the national Conservative Manifesto as it states’

    There will be no extension to the Implementation period
    We will take back control of our laws and our money
    We will be out of the single market and customs union, with our own trade policy
    We will have full control of our fishing waters
    We will introduce a UK immigration policy

    Boris, any government he forms, and you will have your feet held to the fire to deliver. Manifestos – huh!
    As the highwayman might have shouted to the coach driver ‘Stand! – and deliver your money or your life’. A bit dramatic – but any chance of a future Conservative government after Boris rests on doing all you list above. The electorate will watch and remember.

  22. BW
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Doncaster would never vote Tory. If Corbyn was a Martian they would vote Labour. However Doncaster voted to leave. Why oh why are we fielding Tory candidates in Doncaster against the Brexit party. We have just split the leave vote and handed it to Corbyn on a plate.

    • Al
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps, but running a Tory candidate there is a very good way to ensure a Remainer gets in and the Brexit party doesn’t, which further weakens Leave and lessens opposition to Johnson’s deal.

  23. Oliver
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:47 am | Permalink

    Sir John – I’d suggest you take some time setting out clearly the (to me, us, blindingly obvious) thinking behind the suggestion widely made by “Remain” type Tories who think tactically voting LibDem is just a bit of harmless fun, because “Corbyn is just for five years, whereas Brexit is for life”, are so dangerously deluded.

    Tony Abbott in the Sunday Telegraph, and Luke Johnson in the Sunday Times are good articles – both need wide dissemination.

  24. Alan Jutson
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Just two points JR

    I am assuming that you will be voting against The Boris WA if it stays as it is, but you simply do not want to upset the Conservative Party apple cart at the moment by saying so.
    I hope a number of the ERG members think the same, and thus we do the simple thing and just leave on WTO terms on January 31st 2020.

    Boris was wrong and stupid not to withdraw from certain seats where the Conservatives have absolutely no chance of winning, in favour of the Brexit party, and I think the reasoning is because if they did then win in those seats, they would also vote against the Boris WA.

    I would suggest not many of us leavers out here trust Boris, but given the other options available, he is the least worst.

    What a choice we are being forced to make. !

  25. JoolsB
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    “The Conservative party would have liked the Brexit party to also stand down in all those seats which the Conservatives have the best chance of winning from other parties. ”

    Of course they would but the Tories don’t want to play ball when it works the other way round do they John? There are some Labour areas that have never and will never vote Tory but might vote Brexit and yet rather than stand aside for the Brexit party, your party arrogantly refuse, and instead risk splitting the leave vote allowing a remain party to win by default. If this happens and results in Brexit being denied, it will be soley down to Boris who has stubbornly refused to put country before party and stand these candidates down, unlike Farage.

  26. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    There are now 3 days before polling day and we have received no election material except from Labour.
    As every candidate standing in an election is entitled to send one communication via Royal Mail, with no charge to them for postage, to every eligible elector on the relevant electoral register(s) or to every domestic address within the relevant electoral area, it seems very ‘strange’ that we haven’t had anything from any of the other candidates except Labour.
    I am reliabley informed that my wife and I should have already received a communication each from the Conservative Party.
    I wonder if any of your readers has had a similar experience? I find it more than a little suspicious.

    • JoolsB
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

      I’m down in the South West where Labour haven’t got a chance but I am bombarded literally daily with Lib dum propaganda in the post. If it weren’t for the fact I live in a very rural area, I’m sure they would probably be knocking on my door every day as well. The Tory majority is only around 300 yet I’ve received nothing from the Tories.

  27. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    All I see is your party deliberately trying to lose the election so the other side can cancel Brexit, then the other side get the blame, for doing what your party clearly wants to do – which is totally ignore the result of the referendum.

    • old salt
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

      You mean like they did last time?

  28. Alec
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    Yes people have decided to “settle” for the Boris Brexit. Not the Brexit they want but the one that the establishment allows us to have. That is, in a nutshell, the reality of so called democracy in Britain. A sham, a con. There are many people that think that crypto currency will be the death of government. I really hope they are correct.

  29. GeorgeP
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Had the Tories done a good job with BREXIT and we’d have left on the 29th March as a free independent country with our heads held high, the Brexit Party wouldn’t exist. As it is they made a complete and utter horlicks of it and reduced us to an international laughing stock and yet the Tories still have the arrogance to demand that BxP candidates stand down…. I have voted Tory all my life until this years EU elections when I voted BxP, and would have done so again had there been a BxP candidate on my ballot paper.

    • MickN
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      Same for me George. I would happily vote for our kind host – but I would have to vote for Michael Gove who inflicted 3 years of Theresa May onto the country when he stabbed Boris in the back first time around. I cannot pinch my nose hard enough I’m afraid so for the first time in 45 years as a voter I shall stay at home.

  30. Newmania
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Hooray for slightly less than half Nation Conservatism…. My instinct tells me there will be a terrible electoral price to be paid for this crass meandering opportunism. Sadly , as long as brother Corbyn is blocking the system we are stuck with constitutional constipation.

    Has there ever been a more miserable election?

    • Richard1
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      Yes the last one

  31. Derek Henry
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    Excellent piece John.

    However, it comes with a HUGE warning so ignore it at your peril.

    Since I was a kid the middle ground has been moved to the middle of the right wing spectrum and some ideologues want it moved even further right.

    The majority of people across this country who voted leave do not want that. So the Tories need to accept the mistakes they made moving it there and move the middle ground back to the centre and balance the economy.

    If you don’t you will not win another election for 2 generations. Nobody North of the Watford gap wants the middle ground moved further right apart from ideologues who refuse to see never mind admit the mistakes that have been made.

    Neoliberalism failed and everyone can see it has failed.

    • Edward2
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      I see the Conservatives much less right wing today than under Mrs Thatcher, whilst Labour has moved far more to the left than they were under Mr Blair.
      And I think that view is shared by most political commentators in the media.

      If the polls are right it seems the majority do want the policies offered by the Conservatives.

      • bill brown
        Posted December 10, 2019 at 11:38 am | Permalink


        On a number of issues the Conservatives are much more right particularly on migration

        • Edward2
          Posted December 10, 2019 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

          Migration has been at high levels since 1997 and even last year there was a migration of.over 300,000 net .
          I realise you want totally open borders with no limits on numbers bill.
          But it plainly isn’t right wing to have a properly managed policy so that those wanting to come here can have a job ,a doctor, a school place and a place to live.
          I would have thought that policy was fair and right.
          It transcends left and right.

    • NickC
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      Derek H, The “middle ground” has moved decidedly in the “left” (ie statist) direction. There’s hardly an issue left in society that has not been politicised. We are swamped by cultural marxism. You also bandy about the term “neoliberalism” without defining what you think it means, which is altogether pointless.

      • Fred H
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

        NickC – -nor me – I haven’t got a clue. Another fudge term to make the user sound highly educated.

  32. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    How on earth do we know that the Tory MPs who were in the last parliament, like mine in Hexham, and who promised ‘to get Brexit done’ in the 2017 election, will not repeat their lie? Boris may get a majority but that certainly does not guarantee that Theresa May will tow the line.

    You see once politicians lie we can’t be expected to trust them with our most valuable possession – our Sovereignty. Boris lies, he voted for the May WA – why should we trust him? I trust you because you have been a lifelong ‘brexiteer’, but the Tory Parliamentary Party would never have allowed your name on the leadership ballot paper – more reason not to trust them!

  33. BOF
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Splitting the Leave vote is, without question, the Conservative party fighting seats where they have absolutely no chance of winning!

    I believe that the intention is to prevent, at all costs, TBP winning any seats at all even if it means another hung Parliament. Any more MP’s, such as the DUP, in the HoC keeping the Conservative Party honest is anatema to Tory high command.

  34. Doug Powell
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    Well said, Lifelogic!
    Any bets on how many of ‘The Undemocratic 21’ end up in the House of Lords, where they can enjoy daily expenses of £305, plus travel, just for signing in – never mind doing any work! Then they can spend their time using the subsidised restaurant facilities before going to the Test Match, The Theatre, The Opera, all the while continuing to fuel the conspiracy to reverse Brexit!

    It is time the House of Lords was consigned to History! – Closely followed by the BBC and Channel4! Get it Boris?

    • Fred H
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

      Doug – – H of L – a subject for the next Referendum?

      • Doug Powell
        Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

        Why incur the expense of a referendum? A reforming PM with a majority can do it with the stroke of a pen! I sincerely hope he won’t forget the other two, in some ways more deserving of the chop! Also, PM, re BBC, don’t sell out the over 75s!

  35. bitterend
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    your five points are all pie in the sky John- because nobody knows- one thing for certain when this comes out in the wash it’s not going to be whiter than white.

  36. BJC
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    It’s quite extraordinary that our future rests in the hands of a single “Sovereignty” clause for protection from the vast swathes of undesirable clauses in Mr Johnson’s/Mrs May’s dire EU Treaty. What’s our fallback position when (not if) it’s challenged in Court? Will these litigants be concerned about former Conservative MPs when they know, as do we, that we’ll still have a Parliament very sympathetic to the EU cause?

    Mr Johnson will need friends in Parliament to help smooth our Brexit journey, but where will they come from?

  37. Christine
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Nigel would have stood down in more of the opposition held marginals but your party gave him nothing in return. If you lose these marginals then the blame lies squarely on your party’s shoulders. From what I see you fear The Brexit Party getting a foothold in parliament and would rather risk a hung parliament. Nigel loves our country and wants to make it a better less corrupt place. He has more integrity than the rest of you put together. He will always get my vote. I just wish I had a Brexit Party candidate to vote for.

    • Shirley
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

      Well said, Christine. Honesty and integrity do not exist in the majority of mainstream politicians, and they flaunt their undemocratic plans and display their disrespect for the electorate with confidence, as they know democracy can be manipulated with impunity, as is still happening. Choose Brino or Remain! No leave option from the main parties.

  38. Dominic
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:19 am | Permalink

    You wouldn’t now be writing this article if it wasn’t for the personal courage and commitment of Farage. Without him the decision-makers within the soulless, unprincipled Tory party rather than you and other democracy supporters like you would’ve sold this nation’s democracy, sovereignty and independence down the RIVER

    Moral, decent folk will vote Tory with a peg on their nose with only one objective, to save this nation’s people from political extremism, oppression and authoritarianism. This is not hyperbole, this is a statement of fact based on Marxist Labour’s history, their stated intentions and the extremist support and allegiance of their leading lights

    We know Labour is the anti-thesis of morality, truth and freedom but the Tories move to their position is without question the most unedifying and despicable event in British politics for many a decade

    Your party has conspired to protect Labour from harm by refusing to demonise them for their numerous and appalling transgressions for one reason, to maintain the Europhile status quo in Parliament

    With a significant number of BP MPs in the Commons the entire balance of British politics is completely tipped over. Labour’s client state and their conniving vested interests will do all they can to stop Farage and his party. I include the Tory party in that pro-EU conspiratorial strategy. Tory-Labour-LD deals struck behind closed doors.

    utterly shameful

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

      Hear, hear

  39. glen cullen
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    For your 5 points ‘we will..’ insert ‘we might..’

    We are only truly sovereign when we (without EU influence) declare an end date to freedom of movement, VAT, fisheries etc

    It doesn’t help that the PM declares that there will be no paperwork across NI/GB when there clearly will be

    Its just too woolly we need a clean break….I see a lot of smoke and mirrors ahead

  40. Alan Jutson
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Three more leaflets from the LibDems in the post this morning.
    Well one in reality, the other two are pseudo Attack Dog negative against JR organisations, who it has been suggested by the media, are supporters of the LibDems, but allegedly separated for expense limit reasons.

    So that is now essentially 13 leaflets from the LibDems so far, all delivered by the Postman, a huge expense, which I am sure pushes the boundaries under which candidates are supposed to operate.

    One very good reason if indeed you needed another, not to vote for the Libdem Candidate who does not even live in the constituency, who last time stood on a Conservative manifesto in another Constituency, who then Crossed the floor, but was too scared to put his actions to his constituency in the form of a bye election, who now stands this time for the Libdems proper, in yet another constituency, because he allegedly knows his old constituency does not want him.

    Is this a real Democrat, who you could trust with your vote.!!!!!

    • Fred H
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

      Indeed – -Advance (Annabel Mullin) was until recently a Libnodemocrat. A separate mailing fund. Up to all the tricks.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

      Alan we’ve not had one. How selfish of you to keep all the goodies. We’ve had one conservative leaflet and one labour which went straight into the bin.

  41. MikeP
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    Sir John, why do you, Boris Johnson and other MPs talk of “getting Brexit done”, it sounds like it’s pain to be treated, a boil to be lanced or any other problem to be got rid of. Fortunately your piece goes on to confirm the real benefit of the last 40-odd years’ struggle, our independence from EU laws and institutions. Brexit doesn’t get done by the Withdrawal Bill, or even the FTA that might be agreed by December 2020, it will be or should be a process of rebuilding the country as a fully-fledged independent state, confident on the world stage, seizing opportunities and competing globally, especially against the EU.
    With so much (mis)information around on the WA and PD I can’t yet share your optimism that a new Conservative Government will actually deliver the Brexit benefits you speak of and that you and we all want. Time will tell.

    Reply Get Brexit done is the Conservative party phrase. I did not invent it or urge its adoption. It seems to work well with many voters. It does capture the wish of many of us to move on. I want us to get the benefits of exit as soon as possible, which we have bene prevented rom enjoying for three and a half years.

  42. NigelE
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Would it have been that difficult for the Conservatives to step aside in 10-20 seats which they do not have a chance to win but that the Brexit Party might?

    You might rue there not being a small group of Brexit MPs in the new Parliament, Sir John.

    • Fred H
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      NigelE – – The view was quite simply CCHQ feared a tiny majority could be outvoted by 10-20 Brexit seats. In other words ‘no deal’ mustn’t happen.

  43. Gareth Warren
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Mr Farage believe has made the right choice, in conservative seats he would have been taking quite a share of the conservative vote.

    However in labour areas he takes mainly labour votes, this split I would guess helps the conservatives more than just standing aside there too.

    However this does again expose a weakness of our electoral system, if two leave parties both poll 30% they can be beaten by a remain party that polls 40%. The AV+ system would likely prevent this and ensure someone is elected who represents the majority.

    Our voting system needs much improvement, I like that it allows us to select MPs, but it has not taken advantage in improvements in technology for 100 years.

  44. Lifelogic
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    I see that just SUVs still outsell electric cars by 37 to 1!

    This despite all the market rigging, tax advantages and the subsidies for electric cars. Someone tell the Transport Secretary that electric cars are not remotely “zero emission” and that 53% of our energy does not come from wind and solar – it is actually less than 1/10 of this. Not that I have an SUV but some people do need them.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

      Ll. I’ve just been speaking to my neighbour who confirmed her husbands hybrid car is purely for tax reasons. Saving the planet my backside!!

  45. NigelE
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    The first 25 or so comments today make for depressing reading. There is widespread mistrust and disbelief that your party will deliver a clean Brexit – out of the SM & CU and with no role for the ECJ, and preferably not paying the equivalent of most of Defence budget for the pleasure of leaving.

    The majority of the commentators are the long term supporters of your views presented on this blog. Whatever the result on Thursday, I feel this widespread disillusionment augers badly for the Conservatives.

    • Mark B
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:03 pm | Permalink


      Good post. But one always has to observe that this site is its own bubble. That is not a criticism of our kind host or fellow contributors but, as I say, an observation.

      Your last point is very salient. Things indeed do not look well for them and their lurch to the Left in the hope that there old supporters either will not notice or care may prove their undoing.

  46. Diane
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    Seems we have come full circle in that we are where we were when T. May came back from Brussels & declared ‘It’s my deal or no Brexit’ It was stated very early on that this whole campaign was going to be dirty & so it has proved looking at it from many angles. If Labour succeeds & goes ahead with a 2nd referendum, giving votes to all and sundry without any qualification & under which we would without doubt be in the – or as they like to call it “a” Customs Union & subject to the Single Market & its freedom of movement, then I would be minded to vote Remain. Opposers of the current ‘deal’ call it a hard Brexit. It’s plain to see reading here & elsewhere it’s nowhere near hard enough. If a job’s worth doing it’s worth doing well & properly but that went out of the window long ago. Labour & Mr Corbyn in particular have been accused of fence sitting but I believe the Conservatives are where they are in many respects because of just that. Weak decisions, straddling on issues, lack of firmness, resolve & long term vision. TBP have the best slogan in this campaign ‘ Change Politics For Good ‘ If only ! I hope that the TBP manage a few seats in this election. Why TBP is denigrated so is distasteful. There are many areas under this WA where we will be still in the EU’s strait-jacket, possibly fisheries, defence industry, state aid & procurement, farming etc., Good the CP has announced its immigration intentions. Hopefully the amnesty previously mooted, for the many thousands of illegal entrants will not be upheld. Or will it… am not up to date on that. My vote will be for the CP having said all that. Three leaflets through my door to date from the Lib Dems. One from the CP. Nothing from the rest. Our CP candidate is a new one & I shall vote, through gritted teeth, for that person & offer my trust but just this one time more. I simply cannot contemplate supporting any of the rest. Truly depressing. There is so much anger out there. May I take this opportunity to wish you all the best Sir John for Thursday. Truly hoping we see you back in parliament.

  47. Pete S
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    The bit that is missing, is being prepared to go; ‘no deal’ when the EU gets intransigent, which it will.

  48. Santa Claws Back
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    Nothing about Council Tax in anyone’s election leaflets.
    Is it a special gift for everyone at Christmas? Have I let the cat out of the bag?

    • hefner
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

      Very good point. Thanks.

  49. mancunius
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    If the Conservative Party had announced that it had finally seen the error of its ways, had expelled every crypto-remainer or weak, vacillating MP (plenty of those still around) and would stand only candidates who had credibly taken an oath to support a complete Brexit, the electorate and the Brexit Party might have been more easily convinced.

    As it is, there are still MPs whom we know to be remainers, and to quote Gerry Adams, ‘They haven’t gone away, you know.’

  50. James1
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    So the Biased Broadcasting Corporation is having a ‘Question Time’ programme this evening for 18-30 year olds. Not a huge surprise. It would be a huge surprise if they had a similar program for 55+ year olds. The older category can remember the Winter of Discontent, when the dead remained unburied due to union pickets, and cancer patients could not get into hospital due to union pickets. A disgraceful time which the Marxist policies of the current labour leadership would inevitably lead us back to.

    • margaret howard
      Posted December 10, 2019 at 9:55 pm | Permalink


      ” and cancer patients could not get into hospital due to union pickets.”

      And the Conservatives have improved it so much that 4 year old boys with suspected pneumonia are left lying on a hospital floor.

      Aren’t we lucky!

      PS And have you tried getting an appointment with your doctor recently? You will be lucky if he will see you in about 4 weeks’ time.

      • Nuisance
        Posted December 14, 2019 at 2:59 am | Permalink

        No probs here. Never has been. My own doctor works part-time now so I would have to wait a week. I asked months ago. Nothing wrong with me really but he’s the only intelligent person I know or ever met. I’ve met two MPs and a Lord, spoke to them quite a few times. A bit vacant.

  51. Fairweather
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Boris is being so boring
    “Get Brexit done”
    Almost as bad as the maybot strong and stable government
    Give us more details of the harmful effects of the Eu
    Missing opportunities

  52. Everhopeful
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    I am so glad to have read in an old article (2013) that Boris thought a Referendum a good idea because the people had not been consulted since 1975. I feel less inclined to entertain wild conspiracy theories having seen that.
    ( so was Cameron pushed into promising a ref and capitulated only because he thought he would not get a majority in 2015? We really have been witnessing civil war in the Tory party and nothing more sinister!)
    Maybe if Boris gets a majority he will see Brexit through?
    Maybe he really does want a majority?

  53. Ian
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Again Sir John,
    Far be it from me to say that I feel you are glossing over another Tory Manifesto, no one has yet been so crass as to say Red Lines, not to be crossed !

    But those of us who are able to read, have indeed read the Boris Type Two W A ?

    We are trying to compare that to your reading of The Manifesto, you have two days to get Boris to throw away his W A. And stick to the Manifesto.

    Sadly we know that we will be Betrayed yet again, you are all Remainers at heart. I gave here quoted the Manifesto and will take its promises seriously.

    Just how Sir John do you get off by quoting that Manifesto, as if that is the WA ?

    We would all vote for the so called Manifesto.
    You will have to reap the rage of a very very dissatisfied Population.

    You seem to be a decent man, please explain how you will duck your public ?

    Reply i set out my views on the WA in the Second Reading debate on the bill, published on this site.

  54. Keith
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    There’s very little point in making comment now- I fear we have Hobson’s choice- a choice between a bunch of Tory bare faced liars or Corbyn’s incompetents- am afraid UK as we knew it is bunched

  55. Polly
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Having ”full control of fishing waters” doesn’t mean it won’t be traded.

    After all, when you go shopping you have full control of a sum of money which you trade for something else. That’s what looks likely to happen under the WA, trading new freedoms for
    the ”free trade deal” which could take Britain right back to the starting point.


    • glen cullen
      Posted December 9, 2019 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

      Its so easy to say ”full control of fishing waters”

      What the politicans wont tell is when ?

  56. Matt Ryan
    Posted December 9, 2019 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

    Every election I can remember has invoked the boogieman of vote for me or get the other guy. When are you going to give good reasons for voting for you? What about less interference in peoples lives, smaller state etc? What might have been described as conservative values?

  • 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.

  • John’s Books

  • Email Alerts

    You can sign up to receive John's blog posts by e-mail by entering your e-mail address in the box below.

    Enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

    The e-mail service is powered by Google's FeedBurner service. Your information is not shared.

  • Map of Visitors

    Locations of visitors to this page