There are many Opposition MPs and senior government officials who are keen that the UK should stay wedded to EU laws and rules. They take the EU’s side in any dispute even when the EU is being outrageous as with GB/NI trade. They seem to want to keep us in line with perhaps the thought in mind that one day if there is a more pro EU government they can then negotiate some sort of enhanced co-operation Treaty that falls short of full membership but gives them whatever it is they like about the EU.
The paradox lies in the fact that the EU has made some sensible policy changes since we left, but they do not seem so keen to follow those. The EU has suspended the Maastricht debt and deficit criteria and is allowing more state borrowing. The UK Treasury has developed a UK version of the old rules, so wedded are they to them. The EU has made gas a green transition fuel, recognising the reality that gas will remain crucial to heating our homes and fuelling our factories this decade. The UK has stuck with the old EU definitions. Various EU countries have cut fuel duty by double the amount we have cut it in the UK but the pro EU people are not rushing to do it here. It seems they only like the EU when it restricts us,taxes us and makes life difficult.
I trust the government now presses on with sorting out the Northern Ireland protocol. The Unionist MPs have made clear they cannot go into the Assembly, the crucial part of the Good Friday Agreement, all the time NI is cut off from free trade with the rest of the UK by unwarranted EU interventions. There is good legal ground for us to resolve this by taking control of our own internal trade in Northern Ireland which should be nothing to do with the EU, as long as we help enforce no movement of illegal goods into the Republic. My preferred way of doing it is via Clause 38 of the Withdrawal Agreement Act, but Article 16 of the Protocol itself also allows us to do this.