The Protocol needs an exit route for the UK and should leave us in charge of our laws and taxes.

I have tabled questions to the government about their proposed changes to the Protocol.

I want to know how many EU  laws will still apply to Northern Ireland. It appears the EU decides this and the UK can do nothing about it. The so called Stormont  brake does not apply to these laws, which we cannot amend or remove. I and my colleagues have given the government solutions to border issues which do not need NI to be under EU law.

I want to know from the  Treasury if various VAT rules remain place from the EU as the EU says or if we take back control of VAT as the UK says. If there are EU powers what are they?

I want to know if the EU also retains some controls or influence over our Excise taxes as the EU says.

I want to know if any exit  route from the Protocol is available to the UK if iit does not work out.

It would be a bad idea to lock the UK into EU laws and controls with no unilateral way out.

I am also concerned that the Stormont brake would not work. The UK legal establishment has shown itself very supportive of EU rights and powers and might well be reluctant to accept there was sufficient reason  to veto an EU law. The use of a Treaty format limits Parliament’s ability to accept or refuse new laws in the way it can for domestic legislation.

Brexit is all about making our own decisions about laws and taxes. Clearly parts of the UK establishment still wants to make that as difficult as possible.

 

225 Comments

  1. Peter Wood
    March 3, 2023

    Good Morning,

    Sir J, your last para says it all…..whose deal is this so called Windsor Framework again?

    1. Cuibono
      March 3, 2023

      ++100
      Isn’t that a ridiculous name? The EU is keen on royalty all of a sudden is it? ( European monarchs did help in forming the EU…thanks!)
      An attempt to convince us of our sovereignty and unity whatever they do on the qt?

      Nothing makes good the betrayals of Brexit and Covid.

      1. Ian B
        March 3, 2023

        @Cuibono +1

    2. Gary Megson
      March 3, 2023

      Welcome to reality. You were told in 2016 that Brexit would put the UK in a weak position and that we would have to make some very uncomfortable choices. And here we are. You won, get over it

      1. Dave Andrews
        March 3, 2023

        No one told us the civil service was composed of EUphiles that would place the interest of the EU above their own country. We might have suspected as much, but then we would expect our own MPs to be loyal to their own country and get a grip. Then we discovered they operated in a similar vein to the civil service.
        I might have expected gross incompetence, but not treachery.

        1. Donna
          March 3, 2023

          Well said.

          In an earlier age these treacherous politicians and “civil servants” would have found themselves minus their heads.

      2. Ian B
        March 3, 2023

        @Gary Megson – sorry you are wrong we have been denied everything and finished up with nothing, other than the EU still dictates UK Polatics, Tax and Freedoms

      3. Original Richard
        March 3, 2023

        Gary Megson :

        Our weak position is because we have a Parliament, Civil Service and judiciary all working to reverse the democratic decision taken by the people of the UK to leave the EU.

        1. Pauline
          March 3, 2023

          You were told we could not leave the EU without causing harm to Northern Ireland. But you went ahead and voted for it anyway. And now you want to blame everyone but yourself for your decision

          1. a-tracy
            March 3, 2023

            Pauline, we’re now told Northern Ireland has ‘the best’ of all worlds, favoured status, full EU passports, and a full freedom with the UK. It has been sold by Sunak like they have a better deal with a SM status than the rest of the UK, make your mind up remainers. They can’t take the best corporation tax of the EU from their neighbouring Southern Ireland who are allowed to get away with this and not contribute to NATO? (Why?)

            England keeps getting shonked.

          2. Denis Cooper
            March 3, 2023

            Just a sample from the past, August 2018:

            http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2018/08/27/how-theresa-may-could-have-a-good-party-conference/#comment-957324

            “But it’s part manufactured by allies of Brussels in this country, such as the one who said in her Mansion House speech that we must take responsibility for sorting out any problems that arise on the other side of the border. Just to go through the chain of events here: the Irish government was so keen on the Lisbon Treaty that it made the Irish people vote again to get it through, and that was when Article 50 was introduced, but if the British people want to invoke that Article 50 then the Irish government objects and complains that our decision to exercise a right which they said should be in the EU treaties is causing them problems, and our own Prime Minister and her favourite euromaniac civil servant take their side against us. It’s enough to make you sick, and for sure I will never again vote for any Tory candidate in any election, the sooner we are shot of that party the better.”

          3. GAM
            March 4, 2023

            The NI Protocol and Windsor Framework break international law, but funny this is okay for the EU to do, but not Russia –

            • One: The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) comprising 57 States from Europe, Central Asia and North America.

            With the demise of the USSR in 1989 and potential turmoil in Europe, it stated that one of its principles to ensure stability is “respect for internationally recognised frontiers”.

            • Two: more importantly; the Council of Europe (comprising 47 European states including all 27 members of the EU, the home of the European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights) makes clear that a fundamental principle of international law requires respect for “the sovereign equality, territorial integrity and political independence of states”.

      4. Timaction
        March 3, 2023

        No. It is our establishment refusing to implement our democratic choice. They will be removed from office and Reform will replace them.

      5. rose
        March 3, 2023

        We were not in a weak positon. Mrs May put us in a weak position unnecessarily.

      6. Mickey Taking
        March 3, 2023

        if we had lost we would have even more disadvantages than we complain about now!

      7. a-tracy
        March 3, 2023

        The Benn Act betrayal and May/Robbins betrayed the UK.

        1. glen cullen
          March 3, 2023

          ….and Robbins was made a Lord

    3. Cynic
      March 3, 2023

      The Windsor agreement is a rotten deal made by a rotten government.

      1. Nottingham Lad Himself
        March 3, 2023

        Yes, it is, but you and every other brexiter are incapable of proposing anything better which would actually be practicable given the other solemn undertakings that the UK has re peace in Ireland etc.

        This was all patiently and repeatedly explained by Remain before the vote, but you bleated and parroted “project fear”, “we’ve had enough of experts” etc.

        1. Julian Flood
          March 3, 2023

          “you and every other brexiter are incapable of proposing anything better”

          There is an EU system in place where goods are tracked as they move across internal borders, even to the extent of X-raying whole containers in transit. This is to ensure that goods which have not paid VAT on entry — perfectly legally, importers can opt for payment at destination. A cut-down version would ensure that goods could move seamlessly withing the island of Ireland.

          It’s not that there are not better arrangements: the EU is determined that no better arrangements are allowed.

          Hope this is simple enough, even for you.

          JF

          1. Mickey Taking
            March 3, 2023

            none so blind as those who refuse to see.

          2. Gary Megson
            March 4, 2023

            Julian, yes, there is an “EU system”. The clue is in the name. You seem surprised that leaving the EU means we are no longer in the EU

        2. a-tracy
          March 3, 2023

          Give us the links NLH where people were ‘repeatedly’ told that the EU would take control over Northern Ireland.

          1. Mickey Taking
            March 3, 2023

            he has never provided evidence of anything claimed. Pure Troll.

      2. Ian wragg
        March 3, 2023

        So the vat on energy is now clear. The government can’t abolish it because NI cannot go below 5%.
        Taking back control my arm.
        Rishi s stitch up is a better name.
        Nothing has really changed.

        1. Ian wragg
          March 3, 2023

          I see we’re back to the net zero lunacy again. Wind producing 3gw or 10% of nameplate rating, gas and nuclear providing 64% of demand. If Norway and France cut off exports we’re going to be in real trouble.

          1. Mickey Taking
            March 3, 2023

            We are in Sir John’s area and had a power cut earlier. Daytime! – where’s the wind and sun when you need them?

        2. glen cullen
          March 3, 2023

          Spot On Ian

      3. Timaction
        March 3, 2023

        +1

      4. Atlas
        March 3, 2023

        … it seems that way …

    4. Peter
      March 3, 2023

      ‘The Protocol needs an exit route for the UK and should leave us in charge of our laws and taxes.’

      Absolutely. The headline says it all.

      After all the hoopla, people have now had a chance to examine the proposals and there are now worrying questions to be answered and signs of opposition.

    5. Ashley
      March 3, 2023

      Indeed “Brexit is all about making our own decisions about laws and taxes. Clearly parts of the UK establishment still wants to make that as difficult as possible”. The Majority of Tory MPs do to and the other MPs. It seems Sunak is just May in shorts.

      It is also vital to be able to exit any agreement that is not working and to have an independent court if court is needed certainly not the ECJ.

    6. rose
      March 3, 2023

      And “The UK legal establishment has shown itself very supportive of EU rights and powers and might well be reluctant to accept there was sufficient reason to veto an EU law.”

      One could say the same of Parliament as a whole. And the civil service. Talking of which, what utter brazen contempt the left wing Blob demonstrates towards us in this defection of the woman whom everyone from the PM downwards kept telling us had such integrity.

      It always seemed they said this through gritted teeth, and in fear. She obviously had huge untrammelled power – remember Oliver Letwin told us nothing happened without her permission. She was only supposed to be providing the PM with an aide memoire on what had gone on that he did not know about and was not at, so that he could answer questions. It was never a judge led inquiry or even a barrister’s report such as is taking place over accusations against the DPM. Why did she bring the bent Met into it? Why did she not recuse herself as Case did? The worst excesses of the civil servants drinking at work took place in her office, the Cabinet Office, not in no 10. She admitted this when she wrote there was a failure of “our” leadership.

      The Ex Directress General of Propriety and Ethics!

      1. a-tracy
        March 3, 2023

        Quite right Rose, I agree, it stinks.

      2. a-tracy
        March 4, 2023

        One more thing Rose, have you noticed whenever photographs are shown all civil servants breaking the supposed meeting at work rules have their faces blurred out. Boris Johnson should have fought back from the start, who ordered the food and drink (who set this ‘party meeting’ up) who decided who would be in that room. Walking in a room that already had a group of workers you were working with every day during covid, and were probably tested regularly too isn’t like a party called in someone’s house that people have to leave their safe home spaces to go to.

        The civil service have stitched Boris up like a kipper and the leaders Simon what’s his name and this woman has just revealed her true colours, and those colours are anti-tori. God this government is weak from head to foot, they ignore people like Sir John, big mistake Truss, BIG. They trust people who sneakily set up work meetings, buy champagne and wine (at work) and take secret little grubby photos for got you moments!

        Cummings said they all needed exposing and clearing out. Boris should have listened to him not Carrie. Who has been nothing but trouble to him with her party to celebrate getting rid of her nemesis (it is she that celebrated and Boris walked into that trap, that alone shows he doesn’t think on a higher level about how things appear to others).

  2. Mark B
    March 3, 2023

    Good morning.

    You want to buy a new home and, before you can settle in, you must agree that the terms of the deal are, that you cannot change the wallpaper, carpet and curtains, not without prior written consent. You must cut the grass three time per week and open yourself to regular unannounced inspections.

    Hands up, who would enter into such a deal and, would any of those who have negotiated such agreements with the EU done likewise ?

    1. Ian B
      March 3, 2023

      @Mark B +1

    2. Peter Parsons
      March 3, 2023

      Have you ever read the Ts and Cs of a property leasehold?

      What you write is actually not unusual for many property owners up and down the country, and in 13 years this government still hasn’t done away with such terms being imposed on property “owners” who, in reality, are not.

      1. Mickey Taking
        March 3, 2023

        But Leasehold is not owning. Rather like the EU grip of one’s dangly bits – we have no ownership.

        1. glen cullen
          March 3, 2023

          +1

    3. Sharon
      March 3, 2023

      A good analogy mark B.

      Apparently, once ratified, this framework will be permanent in international law.

    4. a-tracy
      March 3, 2023

      People do though Mark, don’t they, they agree not to change the colour of their door or the type of window frames, not to park caravans on their driveways, and not to put up conservatories without permission (and usually charge) from the land lead leaseholder. People buy buildings with parking spaces but aren’t allowed to put in an electric charging point because they don’t own the pavement between the two things, people are caught out all the time by petty fogging bureaucracy.

      1. Mark B
        March 3, 2023

        Only if the property is NOT yours. Do you consider Ulster part of the United Kingdom or not ?

        1. a-tracy
          March 4, 2023

          No Mark, near us a new build estate hit the headlines because although the houses were bought by the homeowners the land they were on were leasehold with a small (getting larger) ground rent, google it, it hits the headlines all the time.

          Rose, I agree Northern Ireland is nothing like a home. May/Robbins and Benn are all responsible for that.

      2. rose
        March 3, 2023

        But none of this about buying houses is relevant. We are not buying the United Kingdom. We already own it – or used to.

        1. Mickey Taking
          March 4, 2023

          Beyond the Church, MOD, The Royal Family, a few dozen inherited aristocrats there is not that much left for the common people to call the United Kingdom ‘owned’ by them.

  3. turboterrier
    March 3, 2023

    Once again we have a PM ecstatic about “his new deal” but as before as the emotions calm down and common sense returns it appears once again we are being shafted when all the small print is analysed. This maybe great for those who want to remain under the heel of the EU but for the rest of us it means we still do not have full control over our own destiny.
    We have played their games for too long and the time has come to walk away. Other countries survive very well without being shackled to the EU. Once a full clean break happens then just maybe all the departments who still want to be under EU guidance and laws will actually open their eyes and commit to the new dawn of success and prosperity which awaits us.

    1. MPC
      March 3, 2023

      But under this agreement – sorry legally binding Treaty with the EU – it will never be feasible to ‘walk away’ . Why do you think Labour undertook to vote in favour of it in advance?

      1. Lynn Atkinson
        March 3, 2023

        I miss Jeremy Corbyn, the real Brexiteer who delivered Remain Labour against Mrs May’s surrender time and again.

        1. a-tracy
          March 3, 2023

          You have a point Lynn.

        2. rose
          March 3, 2023

          Brexiteer Corbyn voted in the no lobby with SIr John and Sir William all down the decades, and then caved in when he became the leader!

      2. glen cullen
        March 3, 2023

        Sorry …a FRAMEWORK which the UK must and will comply with 100% without complaint, argument or protest

    2. MFD
      March 3, 2023

      Agree 100% Turbo. If the eu continue to be nasty we MUST put an end to co-operation!

  4. Wanderer
    March 3, 2023

    I truly admire your tenacity. Best of luck.

  5. turboterrier
    March 3, 2023

    Rishi is doing what all the other PMs have done, fallen for the hustle and returns to give their take on the deal which in reality is pissing down our necks and telling us it’s raining.
    Not paying attention to the detail of the small print before shouting from the roof tops about his deal is just plain nieve. Can we just stop playing these silly games with the EU who are perceived to be playing us for mugs or worse?

    1. Milo
      March 3, 2023

      So Theresa did a deal on Brexit, but you hated it. Boris did a deal on Brexit, you liked it until you realised what it meant, then you hated it. Rishi did a deal on Brexit, but you hate it. Getting the message yet? The problem here isn’t the Prime Minister, the problem here is Brexit. Still think we hold all the cards?

      Reply I did not agree with the Johnson deal re NI and fish. I wanted an exit with no deal and WTO trading

      1. MFD
        March 3, 2023

        Right and wrong Milo. The problem is so-called brexit – we should have thrown the keys at them and walked out . End of!
        They are totally untrustworthy liar foreigners!

      2. Peter Parsons
        March 3, 2023

        A no deal and WTO trading would require a border. The UK is a signatory to an international treaty which commits that that border will not be between the North and Republic in Ireland. So, where would you put the border?

        Furthermore, how would adding quotas and tariffs to UK exports (which is what WTO would mean) to our current largest export market help a struggling UK economy, exactly?

        1. EU fan
          March 3, 2023

          I feel the EU should provide the border if it wishes to.
          It would be between NI and the Republic.
          It would be no different to borders all over the outside perimeter of the EU.
          Do you have recent examples of problems of dangerous shoddy goods being imported onto the Single Market via this route Peter?

          1. Peter Parsons
            March 3, 2023

            The EU is not going to compel one of its member states to breach the Good Friday agreement.

            The issues with the Irish border are a consequence of Brexit, and specifically the type of Brexit chosen by this government. The UK created the problem, so the UK needs to be flexible enough to deal with it. Saying “we created this mess, now you fix it” is no answer.

          2. Nottingham Lad Himself
            March 3, 2023

            Yet you demand that France impose a border with the UK along all of their beaches.

            Not very consistent, are you?

          3. Mickey Taking
            March 3, 2023

            and those borders can be freely driven through at late hours….

          4. Nottingham Lad Himself
            March 3, 2023

            External border arrangements are sovereign matters for the respective European Union states.

            You would impose that burden on ROI then, again in breach of solemn undertakings by the UK.

          5. a-tracy
            March 4, 2023

            NLH how do you feel about France repeatedly breaching their solemn undertaking to control their border, how do you feel when it is reported they put on free buses to take their visitors to dingy departure sites? International agreements only apply to the UK do they?

        2. a-tracy
          March 3, 2023

          Yes, Peter, the UK was very kind and obliging to Southern Ireland when they went independent in 1922, no borders, common travel area, no need for them to pay their 2% contribution to NATO projects, and benefits free for all. Our politicians over the years have dealt the R of the UK a very bad deal.

        3. John Hatfield
          March 3, 2023

          “A no deal and WTO trading would require a border.”
          No it wouldn’t.

          1. Peter Parsons
            March 3, 2023

            WTO rules require non-discrimination so, while the UK has a border and checks at ports such as Dover, it would also be compelled to do the same in Ireland or be subject to any number of complaints.

            The alternative would be no border anywhere. No checks at Dover, Folkestone, Harwich etc. That would hardly be “Taking back control”.

          2. glen cullen
            March 3, 2023

            Correct

          3. Denis Cooper
            March 5, 2023

            And Peter Parsons should check out Article 7.4 of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement:

            https://tfadatabase.org/en/tfa-text/measure/18#

            “7.4 Risk Management

            1 Each Member shall, to the extent possible, adopt or maintain a risk management system for customs control.

            2 Each Member shall design and apply risk management in a manner as to avoid arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination, or a disguised restriction on international trade.

            3 Each Member shall concentrate customs control and, to the extent possible other relevant border controls, on high-risk consignments and expedite the release of low-risk consignments. A Member also may select, on a random basis, consignments for such controls as part of its risk management.

            4 Each Member shall base risk management on an assessment of risk through appropriate selectivity criteria. Such selectivity criteria may include, inter alia, the Harmonized System code, nature and description of the goods, country of origin, country from which the goods were shipped, value of the goods, compliance records of traders, and type of means of transport.”

        4. Denis Cooper
          March 3, 2023

          There already is a border, and it is where it has been for the past century.

      3. Ian B
        March 3, 2023

        @Milo Theresa may did not at any time do a deal on Brexit, to keep using silly jargon she went whole heartedly for Brino(Brexit in name only). Boris Johnson did not do a deal on Brexit he confirmed Brino. Rishi Sunak has not done a deal on Brexit he has also confirmed Brino.
        The EU still tells us what we can do on tax, and how their court is the arbiter on how we act in the UK and so on. That is not an Independent Sovereign Democracy when unelected unaccountable bureaucrats in a foreign land dictate you policy

      4. Mickey Taking
        March 3, 2023

        Yes Sir John, we keep returning to WTO trading, don’t we!

      5. glen cullen
        March 3, 2023

        The people didn’t ‘vote’ for a deal

    2. Michelle
      March 3, 2023

      It’s not just the EU playing us for mugs though is it?
      I don’t believe for one minute that Sunak is that naive and eager to please he doesn’t know of or see any pitfalls.
      He negotiated it so must surely have some inkling, ditto that for the others there with him.

      1. HF Clark
        March 3, 2023

        What gave the game away as far as I was con concerned was UvdL’s one liner ‘the EU will have the final word’ (or words to that effect) during the hotel show.

        That phrase alone made it clear that, whatever the topic within the revised protocol, the UK would NOT be free of EU interference.

        Not a new deal by Rishi; a con by him and his feeble team.

        I suspected when he was first appointed to the cabinet and given the chancellorship that he is just another cheap, glib spiv.

        Now he’s confirmed my suspicions by trying to sell shoddy goods to us.

        Begone, traitor.

      2. Ian B
        March 3, 2023

        @Michelle Sunak and also Hunt have their exit strategies sorted and the UK doesn’t figure

        1. Mickey Taking
          March 3, 2023

          Sunak has got his exit strategy when his short term expires, why would he care?

      3. rose
        March 3, 2023

        We don’t know. How much inkling did he have of what the Treasury was up to, or the Bank?

    3. Ian B
      March 3, 2023

      @turboterrier – I disagree, he refuses to manage anything and prefers the tail wagging the dog, that way he can never be blamed for anything – it was always the other Guy’s fault.
      Never forget Rishi went along with Net Zero, foreign energy dependance, greater imports and the highest taxes in 70 years, because that is what he was told to do by his Masters

  6. DOM
    March 3, 2023

    It’s a stitch up by the establishment (similar to Truss) and when Labour do come to power they’ll have no pretences about aligning us with the EU and then eventual ‘re-membership’.

    1. Cuibono
      March 3, 2023

      +many
      And they will, in time, have gotten rid of Brexiteers and the population will either be new or brainwashed and they will happily vote for re entry.
      I know that previous generations were brainwashed re Empire but at least then we had something that made sense and benefitted the population at large.
      (Until the powers decided on World War culls as soon we became surplus to requirements).

    2. a-tracy
      March 3, 2023

      They don’t want re-membership DOM, they don’t want Farage et al back in, they want us conjoined, English politicians like being walked over.

      1. Chris S
        March 4, 2023

        No doubt they will get over any concerns when they work out how much our net budget contribution would be without any rebate, and there would be no doubt that a firm commitment to join the Euro would be insisted upon and which they would ensure was watertight, unlike that applying to Sweden.

        Rejoining would, without any doubt, be the end of the United Kingdom as we have known it for more than 1,000 years.

  7. Cuibono
    March 3, 2023

    Apparently Sunak and the faithful celebrated in a warm hospitable Windsor hotel yesterday.
    A little charabanc outing of back patting to reassure each other of continuing Tory chumocracy ( some tories anyway).
    What about NI though? U.K. unity and all that?

  8. John McDonald
    March 3, 2023

    Thank you Sir John for all your efforts to keep NI out of the EU and not fully part of a Brexit UK.
    But not sure how you can overcome the Remain ruling elite.
    One thing about Brexit, it has shown we are no longer a true democratic country. I was surprised to read that if you like watching great British Railway journeys you may be open to Right wing radicalisation. This is how far the left liberal globalism influence and control has got in the UK.
    It would seem that the meaning of the word liberal is now moving in the direction of the meaning of the word fascism.

  9. Richard1
    March 3, 2023

    The reality is the opportunity for clean Brexit was blown first by the May-Robbins backstop and by the surrender act but then by Boris Johnson’s deal. How clean Brexit would have worked we will never know. We are where we are, which is we have an existing agreement with the EU which can only be changed by mutual agreement. The NI protocol bill it seems would not have worked. It would have got challenged, probably successfully, and certainly would have led to a trade war.

    This new deal is going through, there’s clearly enough support for it. So the question for Conservative ERG types is do we have another year or more of party split and mud-slinging, almost certainly resulting in a Labour govt, or do we focus on trying to avoid that calamity? Obviously this deal is a fudge, but it’s a better fudge than boris’s oven ready deal. It would be best to see how it works out. If it’s a disaster and the EU uses it eg to try to economically colonise the whole of the U.K. then we can look at new radical action a few years down the line. (Assuming there’s a Conservative govt).

    1. MFD
      March 3, 2023

      No! Do not put of what we can do today, boot the eu into touch, we must grow balls and fight !
      When talking fails , action MUST follow!

    2. Original Richard
      March 3, 2023

      Richard1 : “If it’s a disaster and the EU uses it eg to try to economically colonise the whole of the U.K. then we can look at new radical action a few years down the line.”

      Not if the Remainers have signed us up to a Treaty where there is no unilateral way out. Unless your “radical action” involves a full blown (trade) war?

      1. Richard1
        March 3, 2023

        There’s no unilateral way out of the current setup. That’s the point

  10. Anselm
    March 3, 2023

    Richard North – shunned by all, but a man who knows the EU better than almost everyone said that the Brexit vote was like two trains standing in a station. In front of them was a points. One train was going off in one direction, the other train in the other. It would be, he said, a gradual process, not a sudden cataclysm.
    I like that idea and I think it is what is happening.
    The best part is the goodwill.

    1. Gary Megson
      March 3, 2023

      Exactly right! One train, the EU, is heading for destination free trade, the other, the UK, is heading for destination dusty backwater. We are suffering huge economic damage every single day as a result of the red tape and border checks you voted for

      1. Original Richard
        March 3, 2023

        Gary Megson :

        Our wonderful “free trade” with the EU led to a trade deficit with the EU of £100bn/YEAR. This was unsustainable and we are running out of assets our policy makers can sell to the world to keep us afloat.

      2. Denis Cooper
        March 3, 2023

        Come on then, give us some well-founded numbers for that “huge economic damage” we are suffering.

    2. Lynn Atkinson
      March 3, 2023

      North is wrong of course. The Brexit vote ‘set the points’. The train is on the track we chose. North wanted a job as a Brexit negotiator – until he retires, and pushed a thing he called ‘Flexit’ in place of Brexit. Basically it was Mrs Mays ‘deal’.

      On the other hand the heroic MPs of Labour, Conservative, DUP, who believe in democracy (i.e. arguing your case point by point and making decisions on the resulting facts) WON!

      Sir John was one of those ever fixed marks and is still not moved. His rational argument might well win again, especially in the light of the Hancock leaked messages. These collectivist politicians who think they don’t need to argue their politics, just dictate ‘because the advantages of being in the EU/locking down to flatten the sombrero/saving the planet ARE SELF-EVIDENT’ must be held to account.

      Thank you Sir John for doing this unbelievably difficult job.

    3. Mickey Taking
      March 4, 2023

      Goodwill was cancelled the second after signing.

  11. BOF
    March 3, 2023

    No wonder that von der Leyen was smiling so beautifically. Meet the King and use the lovely sounding name, Windsor, for a binding treaty that denies our Parliament oversight while nailing the United Kingdom to the floor in serfdom to the EU.

    Our ever so loyal MP went on FB in support of this new abomination (time to move on , she said) and when I pointed out that EU law still applied with ECJ oversight the response was angry and that their was no other choice. So all the seals will be happy and clap on command.

    1. Lynn Atkinson
      March 3, 2023

      Should be called the Treaty of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

      1. Lynn Atkinson
        March 3, 2023

        My husband calls it ‘The Windsor Knot’.

        1. Mickey Taking
          March 3, 2023

          better – ‘The Windsor Strangle Knot’

  12. Cuibono
    March 3, 2023

    ££££7 billion a day now (can that really be true?) on hotels, doctors,dentists,pocket money…
    271,000 homeless on the streets of the U.K.
    Does the govt. feel a scintilla of shame?
    As if!
    And now it happily hands us over to Labour.

    1. hefner
      March 3, 2023

      Really? Do you ever check your orders of magnitude before commenting?
      If your £7 bn a day were correct it would mean £2.55 tn per year: the total UK expenditure for 2022 was £1.058 tn. (ukpublicspending.co.uk).
      Quick, to the corner with the dunce hat …

      1. Cuibono
        March 3, 2023

        Lol….how very stern 🧐
        I did qualify what I said!
        (And didn’t you omit .2 of the guesstimated figure?)

  13. Peter van LEEUWEN
    March 3, 2023

    As I see it, the EU law also applies to the UK.
    If you were to dump Chinese goods onto the single market, you would be taken to the ECJ again and be fined again. Not much difference between plc UK or Google or another entity doing business with us. In the Single Market there must be an ultimate arbiter, protecting its integrity.

    1. Sir Joe Soap
      March 3, 2023

      Selling to your single market is a matter for businesses selling to keep to your rules. Northern Ireland is a completely separate matter. Don’t use it to protect your single market without full democratic consent. Hands off!!

    2. Berkshire Alan
      March 3, 2023

      The difference Peter is we are not now covered or controlled by EU law in our own Country.

      When you send goods to other areas/countries outside of your own, of course you need to satisfy their rules somehow, that has always been the case.
      The simple truth is the EU want to be able to control what goes on trade wise in northern Ireland, but do not want to be honest about it !

      1. Bill Brown
        March 3, 2023

        We signed off the Protocol ourselves

      2. Peter van LEEUWEN
        March 3, 2023

        @Berkshire Alan:
        “The simple truth is the EU want to be able to control what goes on trade wise in northern Ireland, but do not want to be honest about it !”
        The EU is interested in goods that go from N. Ireland to R.O.I. (=EU) via the non-border.
        When the UK decided to leave the EU, they agreed with the EU to leave the non-border in tact and signed a protocol to make that possible. Alternatives had been sought but never found (apart from dreamed up non proven “alternatives”). I don’t think the EU particularly likes the protocol or its successor the windsor framework. The only ones who should like it are the Northern Irish: with full priviliged access to 2 single markets (UK and EU) they could draw business from the R.O.I. (=EU) to Nothern Ireland.

        1. a-tracy
          March 4, 2023

          Have they found any evidence that banned goods are going regularly from Northern Ireland to Southern Ireland? Or is this just the EU defaming the UK.

          We have to trust the ‘sainted’ EU when we get all sorts over the year from illegal horse meat to unchecked salmonella filled chickens. No action seem to ever be taken. This is not a complaint about the EU but a complaint our our weak compliant government.

    3. Dave Andrews
      March 3, 2023

      That’s something the EU members have to enforce within their own borders, not something the EU can enforce within the UK. If Eire and the EU don’t want to place custom posts on the NI border that’s their choice and the UK may not choose to do so either. The EU can just hold its nose and put up with it.
      I understand the WTO may also have something to say about having different rules on the EU and UK borders, but will anyone put in a complaint?

    4. Timaction
      March 3, 2023

      We don’t want you or your EU. We have a trade deficit. Therefore you need to please us. Fool.

      1. Bill Brown
        March 3, 2023

        Timeaction,,

        Becoming personal in the debate actually degrades you and your contribution

    5. rose
      March 3, 2023

      By all means let the EU guard its single market, from within its own borders. We too have a single market, and a United Kingdom, which the EU is deliberately breaking up. Even if the EU refuses to respect our single Market and our United Kingdom, even if it has broken the Belfast Agreement in pieces, why is it flouting its own Lisbon Treaty, article 8? Why did it flout article 50?

      1. Mark B
        March 3, 2023

        +1

    6. Lynn Atkinson
      March 3, 2023

      But Northern Ireland is NOT in the EU.
      Apply your law within your own border by all means, but the UNited Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is not within your borders.

    7. Mark B
      March 3, 2023

      And if you dump your maggot infested food on us can we take the EU to a UK Court and have it fined ?

      As for Google. They are a USA company and come under USA law and have just ignored the EU and its fines.

      1. Peter van LEEUWEN
        March 3, 2023

        Mark Mark, you’re badly informed. Google, Microsoft and others just have to pay their EU fines, unless they win their appeals.
        The Windsor Framework leaves N. Ireland in the Single Market for goods, as far as I understand. That has nothing realy to do with sovereignty, just like Switzerland nor Norway have lost their sovereignty by making use of the EU Single Market.
        To me there seems to be a bit of an overblown, “religious” exageration of “sovereignty” among the ultra brexiteers. If the Stormont assembly doesn’t want certain new developments they can apply the Stormont Break.

        1. Gary Megson
          March 4, 2023

          Moreover Stormont can decide to remove the whole thing if it wants to, that is Article 18 of the Protocol. Peter, you are right this is nothing to with “sovereignty”, it’s just trouble-making – notice how the people now up in arms about Northern Ireland never even mentioned it back in 2016 even though Remain (especially John Major and Tony Blair) showed wwhat a big problem it would be

          1. a-tracy
            March 4, 2023

            Gary, personally I have no strong feelings about the Northern Ireland deal, but to say this blog, Denis Cooper (in particular) and others on this blog didn’t mention protecting Northern Ireland back in 2016 is a blatant lie.

    8. Mickey Taking
      March 3, 2023

      Integrity ? Good heavens! where can we find that in anything EU?

      1. Bill Brown
        March 3, 2023

        Mickey

        More nonsense

  14. Sea_Warrior
    March 3, 2023

    The framework is another sell-out. Adding an exit-route would appear to be key improvement needed and I hope that the DUP and ERG insist on one.
    P.S. Off-topic, I see that there has been a conviction of someone steering a dinghy towards the UK. Good: about time!

    1. Bill brown
      March 3, 2023

      The ERG are now a waste of time

  15. Barrie Emmett
    March 3, 2023

    Please pursue this relentlessly.

    1. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      +many

  16. Mick
    March 3, 2023

    Off topic
    Proof that the Sue Gray report was a manufactured plot to oust Boris’: Johnson allies slam Keir Starmer’s appointment of Partygate civil servant as his chief of staff
    I think the government should make it a top priority to investigate this allegations like the mainstream media did to oust Boris from power, what with the unions trying to bring the elected government down and now Sue Gray its leaving a very unpleasant smell of a conspiracy to discredit the government and bring it down, so the PM should go after the Labour Party like they have over partygate because the General Election is not to far and what this country doesn’t want is a labour government in power

    1. Mickey Taking
      March 3, 2023

      You will find out the country doesn’t want a Tory government.

    2. a-tracy
      March 4, 2023

      Was every civil servant involved in the party gate photos investigated to the same level as Boris Johnson, who bought the food and drink, who called the meeting. Boris appears so disorganised I doubt it was him, Rishi walking in a room already in flow of a civil service organised party meeting (very convenient if you are setting someone up for a fall).

      1. rose
        March 4, 2023

        The main point is Boris is not a party animal, not the Champagne Charlie the MSM convinced the gullible public he was. He likes solitary pursuits like reading and writing, painting and making models. He is quite shy. But by creating a false image the media and opposition have aroused fury and resentment across the country. Misleading the public on a vast scale.

  17. The Prangwizard
    March 3, 2023

    Enough is known for you to make it clear this stitch-up must be opposed by you Sir John. There’s no need to fiddle with asking questions about details. You must make it clear now you oppose it in principle and your administration for further betrayals such as this.

    How can you put your loyalty to Sunak and his traitor colleagues first as always. Party first country last, again. We know the elite the establishment and administration of the country is rotten with moral corruption – why be part of it?

    Reply I have made clear my objections and set out how we need to have control of our laws and taxes.

  18. Donna
    March 3, 2023

    Sunak’s sell-out is intended to permanently align the UK with the EU (using NI as the justification) ….. outside its formal legal structures, but subject to many of its rules and regulations and NOT ALLOWED to compete with it. It is the complete opposite of Taking Back Control of our country.

    And in due course, when the proposed two-tier structure has been created (after the Ukraine war) it will be used as a justification for taking us into the outer tier: Association status, controlled by the Kommissars.

    The new King – who only a few months ago promised to uphold the Constitution and stay out of politics – effectively endorsed it on behalf of the Government BEFORE Parliament had even debated it. I, for one, will not be watching or celebrating his Coronation. I see nothing to celebrate; I think he will be as bad a King as the first Charles was.

    1. Christine
      March 3, 2023

      +1

    2. Timaction
      March 3, 2023

      Agreed. A bunch of traitors ignoring the will of the people but importing millions to rid us of our culture and values. Torys must go.

      1. MFD
        March 3, 2023

        Not only the conservatives, we need rid of the far left Labour trash

    3. Sharon
      March 3, 2023

      Donna +1

    4. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      The Kings first foreign visit isn’t with the Commonwealth nor our dearest friends in the Americas but to the two main powerhouses of the EU

  19. Narrow Shoulders
    March 3, 2023

    The agreements seems overly complicated to me.

    All that is needed is stringent policing of trading standards on both sides of the border in Ireland and the red and green lanes.

    The rest can only be vassalage.

    1. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      Correct…just place the red and green lanes on the actual border between Eire and NI ….in fact don’t do anything, let the EU implement border controls if it wants to

  20. Bill Brown
    March 3, 2023

    Sir JR

    Please wait until you have the full picture and interpretation.
    And on EU laws of course some of them will still apply. Johnson signed this mess and so did your party.

  21. Michelle
    March 3, 2023

    With reference to Sir John’s final paragraph, surely such people within the establishment working against the will of the people and knowingly twisting the truth should be removed.
    I wonder how the people of Ukraine would feel if Zelensky should be found to be doing sly back room deals with Putin to let him eventually say what goes?
    We don’t need an outside enemy with guns and rockets, we have an enemy within. They’ve been there a long time and have done untold damage in every way possible. In many ways it’s almost as if we are a conquered people with the conqueror re-writing our very existence.

    1. HF Clark
      March 3, 2023

      +1

    2. Ian B
      March 3, 2023

      @Michelle the refusal of Government to Manage

    3. turboterrier
      March 3, 2023

      Michelle
      In the utilities contracting game when a new contract is awarded the new company takes over the old contractors staff under a new contract and conditions.
      After every GE all the civil service employees should have to sign a new contract confirming their allegiance to the new government. Anyone deemed to be restricting the progress of the work and projects of the new government faces instant dismissal. It automatically brings in an ethos of accountability and applies focus to those who just push paper around their desk.

    4. Sharon
      March 3, 2023

      Michelle

      +1 “The enemy within” – an accurate assessment!

    5. Bill B.
      March 3, 2023

      You ask how would Ukrainians feel about that idea, Michelle?

      We’ll soon know, the way things are going.

  22. Denis Cooper
    March 3, 2023

    Why has the UK government set its face against the introduction of export controls, checks and controls on the only goods which might actually pose a threat to the integrity of the EU Single Market? It is now nineteen months since that was mooted in the July 2021 Command Paper, it would only need secondary legislation under the Export Control Act 2002 and it would not have infringed the protocol, so why has the government not done it?

    And what has happened to the DUP/ERG proposal for registered “EU exporters” who would be allowed to export goods to the EU, including to the Republic, rather than this obnoxious scheme for “trusted traders” being allowed to use a green lane when bringing goods into one part of our country, Northern Ireland, from the other part, Great Britain?

    https://twitter.com/BBCNolan/status/1628728984967041025

    I am afraid there is one obvious, and very unwelcome, conclusion, which is that the UK government positively wants Northern Ireland to remain under a large measure of EU control; and why should that be?

  23. majorfrustration
    March 3, 2023

    Given that we were lied to by the Politicians over Covid is it any surprise that we are being lied to over the Windsor Agreement

    1. Sharon
      March 3, 2023

      Major Frustration
      We were lied to about our entry into the EEC – seems to have become a bit of an ongoing habit!

      1. glen cullen
        March 3, 2023

        +1

  24. Sir Joe Soap
    March 3, 2023

    Two separate issues here.
    Yes, a Stormont Axe is also required for EU rules not acceptable by the devolved administration and thereby Westminster.
    The UK legal approach to Brakes or Axes is a separate matter and is for us to fix in our own good time.

  25. Berkshire Alan
    March 3, 2023

    Afraid the majority in Parliament are EU supporters (many hiding in the closet), and while that exists we will never recover full sovereignty.
    I just wish they would all be honest about it !

  26. Mike Wilson
    March 3, 2023

    I bet I am not the only person bored to tears by this issue. I could not care less about it.

    1. Clough
      March 3, 2023

      +1
      Thanks, Mike, for speaking up!

    2. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      On the contrary anything, which affects our freedom, democracy and sovereignty, is of great importance to me

    3. Mark B
      March 3, 2023

      +1

      I feel for those in Ulster who want to remain part of the UK, but I also feel for those in Ulster who do not. Perhaps it would be better if they had a referendum on uniting with the RoI. They could do it in the style of the EU – Keep voting until you ‘get the right answer.’ 😉

  27. Ian B
    March 3, 2023

    In a nutshell the people voted to leave the unelected unaccountable EU so as to become a free sovereign democracy. The Government, Parliament and the Establishment have fought tooth and nail to ensure that cant happen.

    Simple they find it easier to take orders from those that cant be challenged, their higher echelon beings and masters, than to accept the responsibility or their voters and those that pay their wages.

  28. agricola
    March 3, 2023

    You can be absolutely sure that whatever is in the EU version of the document wil be the way the EU interpret it. It would be politically fatal to sign it, but for a deadman/party walking who is going to worry but the heirs.
    Equally if there is no unequivical exit clause it would be insane to sign it.
    The EU do not want clarity for trade, lack of it is a punishment for having the temerity to leave their rotten organisation. This will continue for as long as we lack the guts to say enough is enough. There is an illusion that we can have a civilised relationship with the EU, we cannot until they desperately want it. To retain any credibility, the DUP and ERG , plus anyone with cerebral clarity must vote against it. If Rishi is dependent ob Labour support to carry it, he can ponder on the consequences for him and his party.

  29. Michelle
    March 3, 2023

    I’ve just watched a little of Farage interviewing Wilson of the DUP about the deal of the century.
    I couldn’t agree more with his view that so many were hailing it as a huge success before they’d even got a printed copy in their hands.
    Had he and others slammed it so quickly before reading the details, there would have been uproar.

    1. Sharon
      March 3, 2023

      I wondered if the reason for a full HofC for sunak’s reading of the framework was done in order for MPs to not feel the need to read the document for themselves. It sounded so much better no need to read it, just nod it through?

      Sammy Wilson is far from alone in his criticism of the framework. (I can’t bring myself to call it the Windsor framework!)

      1. glen cullen
        March 3, 2023

        +1

  30. Brian Cowling
    March 3, 2023

    The Prime Minister and others selling it as a good deal does not make it a good deal as any snake oil salesman would attest. It’s a bad deal in my opinion because the EU will decide UK matters. It is shameful to link the “Framework” with the King.

    1. formula57
      March 3, 2023

      @ Brian Cowling – Shameful indeed, so we should be ready for a name change to the Saxe-Coburg and Gotha Framework perhaps. That would sound more congruent with the people it benefits.

  31. HF Clark
    March 3, 2023

    +1

  32. Brian Tomkinson
    March 3, 2023

    It is almost 7 years since we voted to leave the EU. Why have government and Parliament failed to do as instructed by the sovereign people? Why have they agreed that Northern Ireland, a integral part of the UK, should be a vassal state of the EU?

    1. rose
      March 3, 2023

      Because that way the EU can reach back into the Mainland and control us all.

  33. Denis Cooper
    March 3, 2023

    Further to the above, here is a comment from four years ago:

    http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2019/02/03/the-uk-should-lead-freer-trade-worldwide/#comment-993316

    referring to an article in the Irish Times headlined:

    “The big Brexit question: What does a hard Irish Border look like?”

    Here are two sentences that I did not quote in my comment at that time:

    “Could there, for example, be physical infrastructure somewhere away from the Border? And similarly when we say related “checks and controls”, does that rule out any such checks or could they, for example, take place at company premises North and South?”

    “The Government’s view is that we want the North to remain in the same trading bloc with the Republic – in other words to have the same customs regime and the same rules and regulations applying to goods moving across the Border.”

    And that is almost exactly what the Irish government has got, courtesy of our government, and to our detriment.

    1. Oldtimer
      March 3, 2023

      Denis, Maybe it’s time to give the old arguments about border posts etc a rest – we all know the preferred choice of the hard Unionists especially the DUP is to have posts strung right along the border interspaced with watch towers and manned by the army – but that is not going to happen. The Framework is clearly the only show in town now and we’re going to have to make it work – with or without the DUP.

      1. Denis Cooper
        March 4, 2023

        Do we all know that? Do you have a shred of evidence, or is this just another invention?

  34. Ian B
    March 3, 2023

    ‘Stormont brake would not work’ it can’t work, the ECJ is the arbiter. The ECJ is not a court in the UK sense, in the UK we separate the Law from Politics the Courts follow an Independent path and decision are based on ‘case’ law. The ECJ takes asks for its guidance from the EU Commission.

    1. Bill brown
      March 3, 2023

      Ian B
      Wrong the BJC does not take guidance from the the EU commission. Do your homework

      1. glen cullen
        March 3, 2023

        They’re indivisible

    2. rose
      March 3, 2023

      We used to separate the law from politics.

  35. Bloke
    March 3, 2023

    The current PM’s attempt to polish a sticky offer with a Windsor title and a Royal handshake is disagreeable.
    We need a clean break from the EU, not a shabby stitch up to drag clinging on behind us.

  36. Sakara Gold
    March 3, 2023

    Sunak has produced a typical compromise that will be acceptable to many in Parliament. Maybe we should approve it on the vote and see if it has any positive effect on the whole UK economy. So far Brexit appears to have seriously damaged many SME’s, the City, forward inward investment, farming etc. But hey-ho, we’ve got our sovereignty back!

    1. Original Richard
      March 3, 2023

      Sakara Gold ; “Maybe we should approve it on the vote and see if it has any positive effect on the whole UK economy.”

      Not if there is no unilateral exit clause.

      No Parliament has the authority to sign such an undemocratic treaty.

    2. rose
      March 3, 2023

      How do you compromise on sovereignty and independence? You either get it back or you don’t, and it seems we aren’t. We are going not for compromise but for capitulation.

    3. Mickey Taking
      March 3, 2023

      and if we don’t see a positive result? Overturn it ! How?

  37. Jude
    March 3, 2023

    Thank you John, for your review & concerns regarding this oversold fudge. How very naive of Rishi to try such a theatrical delivery. Especially when Labour said they would back it. Supposedly without sight of the agreement. This just confirmed concerns this was a deal for EU not NI. Do hope the questions you raise get fully answered. Then improvements made. Otherwise Rishi will have ensured Tories total demise at the next GE!

  38. James4
    March 3, 2023

    Before we retreat back into poet’s corner, navel gazing, whatever happened to ‘suck it and see’?

    Times have changed and we are never going to get back to where we were in the 60’s and 70’s because from what I see it’s where most of the leavers would like us to go – to the past to a time of empire – but empire is not there anymore.

    So now we have to develop a new way of looking at things and to help with that we have to throw out a lot of the old baggage – we need fresh thinking.

    Consider then first of all that if this new framework were to succeed for NI then why could it not be also applied to other regions of the UK. For myself I can see we need to join the SM and possibly the CU and that’s all – we are never going to get back to full membership again with EU even if we wanted that ship has sailed – the Widdecombes Hannan and Farrage gang have seen to that.

    Lastly I have to say the ERG and DUP the creationist naysayers have also had their day between them they have not come up with one credible alternative plan to advance this country – all we hear is galf baked ideas about the Pacific group jillions ov miles away and of course No No No! – so time now to move on and give Richi a chance – better give the framework a chance – suck it and see

    1. Mark B
      March 3, 2023

      You state :

      So now we have to develop a new way of looking at things and to help with that we have to throw out a lot of the old baggage – we need fresh thinking.

      The you go on to say :

      For myself I can see we need to join the SM and possibly the CU . . .

      Clearly you do not understand what the both the Single Market and the Customs Union are. They are a framework of rules by which the EU Commission govern all those under that umbrella. It restricts our ability to set the rules by which we can trade both internally and externally.

      If you want fresh thinking, and it has been mentioned here many years ago, that if you want to see our nation grow one must look to East Asia. There is where you will find, not only a large and growing market but, the largest body of people on the planet. Under the SM and CU the UK could not hope to negotiate new trading deals.

    2. Denis Cooper
      March 3, 2023

      We need well-founded numbers, not unfounded assertions.

    3. Diane
      March 4, 2023

      Fresh thinking, differing interpretations perhaps, but yes that is what is needed. We don’t get it though do we! Followers all ! Impositions is what we get with scrutiny denied or abandoned & we’re seeing it too with the Corporation Tax issue and the forthcoming WHO treaty and I suspect the next imposition to come on stream will be illegal immigration once the chosen one has consulted further with those who matter. Bitter? Yes.

  39. Ian B
    March 3, 2023

    When we look at the catastrophe that comes from the failure of the UK Government to do it proper job, for and on behalf of the UK – i.e. just Manage and do what they are elected and paid to do.

    The only thing that stacks up coming from this UK Government, is failure on top of failure.

    Its not just leaving the EU, its also the economy, tax, security, reliance and safety for the UK and its people.

    They also seem to think no one is noticing.

    From Tom Harwood on Question Time
    “I don’t think there’s a single form of energy production in this country that a politician, or across the board politicians, have supported. We live in a country now where every single politician, every single political party, from each direction, find reasons to say no. To stop development. To stop growth. To stop our own home-grown energy. Frankly, I don’t care if it’s shale gas, if it’s fracking, if it’s wind, if it’s solar, if it’s nuclear, if it’s oil, if it’s gas. I don’t care, just build it!”

    They have stopped being a UK Government just as they have stopped being Conservative. They have put being a Conservative back a Generation they are Socialist that have high-jacked a whole political party and sacrificed it on the back of their own personal ego.

    1. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      +1

  40. glen cullen
    March 3, 2023

    The Windsor Framework is the ‘red-line’ which has been crossed

  41. Kenneth
    March 3, 2023

    How many more Sue Grays are in the civil service and to what extent have ministers been captured by civil service doctrine?

    It smells like a coup

    1. Original Richard
      March 3, 2023

      Kenneth :

      And remember her new boss, who wanted Jeremy Corbyn to be PM, was also the Director of Public Prosecutions.

    2. glen cullen
      March 3, 2023

      It’s a coup within a coup within a coup …..the civil service are masters at smoke & mirrors

  42. Ashley
    March 3, 2023

    Exactly right JR, but rather understated. This “Windsor Framework” is an appalling outrage and a con trick from Sunak.

    1. Diane
      March 4, 2023

      The big theatrical presentation with Mrs V der Leyen and the King’s involvement I find ill judged & contemptible. Just more patronising nudging and another case of treating people like idiots. As for Labour’s parliamentarians’ unquestioning resolve to support this imposed so called deal before it was even announced and even then without any meaningful detail, tells us a lot.

  43. Bert Young
    March 3, 2023

    The points raised by Sir John hit the nail on the head as usual . It is important that we maintain a good relationship with the EU but they have no right whatsoever to interfere with our laws . We must put our foot down once and for all emphasising our sovereignty .

    1. Mickey Taking
      March 3, 2023

      We might prefer a good relationship, but clearly they prefer not to have one – unless we always bend the knee.

  44. formula57
    March 3, 2023

    We must never forget of course that Northern Ireland is an integral part of the United Kingdom pro tem. I for one will be content to save the net £5 billion plus that keeping it costs when, to my indifference, it goes its own way or joins another State.

    I do have some interest in harming the Evil Empire, although not when so doing inconveniences us, and I care very much indeed about the integrity of the U.K. government’s actions and further betrayal by the political class in this country.

    As for an exit route, recall the Versailles Treaty did not have one either until it did!

  45. , George Brooks.
    March 3, 2023

    The Sue Grey revelation has taken the lid off a major reason as to why we have made such poor progress in benefitting from the many Brexit advantages that we should have had by now.

    A huge number of MPs are very inexperienced and rely heavily on the advice of their Civil Service staff and in the last 20 or so years they have been acting outside their remit and showing their political colour. They have been an absolute boon to the Remainers and have damaged this country’s progress significantly.

    The Windsor agreement is a classic and just like the bottom of a baby’s pram ”all wind and crumbs”. It changes very little and an important part of the UK remains under EU law and their court. The PM’s sales pitch on and in the media pales into insignificance when along side the statement from the EU and all we should give it is 6 months to see if anything has really changed. I doubt that it has, and therefore I hope there is an exit clause which we can and should use in order to implement Brexit for the benefit of the entire UK

  46. William Long
    March 3, 2023

    I am afraid the likelihood of you getting straight replies to your questions is virtually zero. All we can hope for is that the DUP will not fall for it.

  47. Bryan Harris
    March 3, 2023

    Fair questions – but will there be an adequate response?

    I doubt it…. This is another version of the surrender that May hung around our necks.

    Compared to the EU bureaucrats, our negotiators are amateurs who just want to be on good terms with our jailers and are afraid to rock the boat…..

  48. agricola
    March 3, 2023

    There always has been a solution to a clean Brexit when logic and fact confirm that the EU have no real interest in trade and will in fact use it to bait their punishment trap. Nor incidentally do they have any interest in the GFA or its future one way or another.
    For trade the way to leave was via WTO rules, as advocated by our host from the outset. Trade with a common land border could be conducted with electronic documentation. No imposition on trade between the UK/UKNI/UK. Criminal activity dealt with by the Garda, the RUC, and UK crime agencies. The EU would be free to build whatever borders they wished within Ireland. At worst resort just cancel trade between Ireland and the UK, it does not amount to more than a bag of beans anyway, and could be replaced.
    It would have been that, by taking this hard surgical line EU industrialists would have understood the effect on bottom line and put pressure on the EU to arrive at a better solution.
    Brexit done the above way would have left us free of the ECJ and open to run the UK as we wished.

  49. outsider
    March 3, 2023

    Dear Sir John,
    Thank you for this. If , as appears, the “Framework” agreement is a fait accompli, it is important that it not be enshrined in any legislation that seeks to bind future parliaments. because that is by definition a move to muzzle the democratic voice of the people. We must also assume that the agreement will be used and abused by the EC to maximise its control of Northern Ireland in ways that the UK government has not thought of, just as it abuses unintended powers to leverage central control of member states. The US Federal government does the same thing.

    Can we then make sure that we use alignment to help Northern Ireland. In his Budget, Mr Hunt should align the NI rate of corporation tax to that in the Republic. That would surely be a case where a lower tax rate boosts revenue within a short period.

    He should also ensure that no taxes and, where feasible, no excise duties are higher in NI than in the Republic. If our taxes are in some cases lower, all to the good.

  50. George Sheard
    March 3, 2023

    Will me still gave article 16?

  51. Christine Marland
    March 3, 2023

    Good you are asking awkward pertinent questions of the government about Sunak’s proposed agreement. It is very important that you carry on doing this. He appears to have deliberately dismantled the Protocol Bill and Article 16. At present any opposition seems to have been wrong-footed by Sunak? The U.K. and NI should not be bound closer to EU by this agreement. Many commentators here and DT are suspicious of the proposed agreement and it has not helped that DT articles on the Windsor framework have deliberately stopped in favour of a swamping of articles on the Lockdown what’s-app tapes. Hopefully this will change at the weekend. We need more MPs to criticise this agreement forcefully.

  52. SimonR
    March 3, 2023

    Sir John,

    I agree totally that an exit route if things don’t work out is essential, and is what you should be campaigning on – it’s essential, simple, and easily communicated to the public as an argument. If that is there, any improvement to intra-UK trade is welcome and the agreement should be accepted with gusto.

    Simonr

  53. glen cullen
    March 3, 2023

    I have no doubt that all of SirJs suggestions, policy recommendations and proposals would be taken up and included in the manifesto of the Reform Party …why are his ideas ignored by his own government

  54. a-tracy
    March 3, 2023

    John, has your party done anything since 2016 or January 2021 (if we were tied in until then) that has diverged from EU rules and regulations? Perhaps you could do a positive post sometime with any tax and vat gains you have granted us, in particular?

    So basically, we are supposed to be free and independent, but which EU laws and regulations have we broken free from that Northern Ireland still has to follow? To have its EEA-type agreement.

  55. Jason
    March 3, 2023

    There will be no exit route from the protocol because we are tied up with it in so many ways so we had better start owning up to the truth of the matter now instead of forever making excuses inventing pipedreams etc of what could be – what might be? ‘an exit route for the UK’ – indeed

  56. Original Richard
    March 3, 2023

    Parliament needs to be reminded who won the most votes and seats in the 2019 European Parliament Eelection.

  57. Chris S
    March 3, 2023

    We all know that Brussels does not do “negotiations” – they just dictate in their usual arrogant manner.
    This new arrangement changes almost nothing, and the UK is still under the EU thumb in many crucial areas.
    We should most definitely have left the EU without an agreement.

    1. mancunius
      March 4, 2023

      Exactly, Chris S! It is a betrayal of the 2016 referendum.

      1. glen cullen
        March 4, 2023

        Agree

  58. derek
    March 3, 2023

    SJ, “The Protocol needs an exit route for the UK and should leave us in charge of our laws and taxes”.
    It beggars belief that the PM and his Cabinet would not have this written in stone BEFORE any negotiation with Brussels.
    What is the matter with them? Do they not have the competence to handle the EU?
    His timid proposals are not true “Brexit” so why does Mr Sunak not put the problem into the hands of someone who can handle it and one who will certainly put OUR country and its citizens, FIRST?

  59. glen cullen
    March 3, 2023

    The EU Commission, Parliament & Council have all moved on and fully appreciate that GB have left the Union ….however the prise for them has always been a united Ireland, ….we haven’t just capitulated we’ve given them everything they’ve asked for on a silver platter

  60. ukretired123
    March 3, 2023

    Keep up your excellent work Sir John ensuring we are not sold down the river by naive and gullible bureaucrats and politicians to the EU. The EU spin overlooks the EU court ECJ ruling and trumping and trampling over the UK’s best interests in future as infinitum.

  61. mancunius
    March 4, 2023

    Does the PM really think we can’t see right through him? He persuades the King to meet the Head of the EU Commission at Windsor, just so his sellout of the United Kingdom can be given a PR-friendly title. ‘Windsor Framework’ indeed. I wonder if the King realizes just how much that misstep of his has damaged the monarchy.
    JR, your questions and remarks are all 100% on the money. You and your colleagues must resist this feint of remainers to handcuff not only NI but – bit by bit – the UK to the Brussels radiator.
    The EU only ever frames and signs treaties that are drafted so as to be apparently liberal, with lots of ‘unless’ or ‘in the case that’ clauses to suggest there are alternative paths – but actually intending the tightest and harshest interpretation and with ECJ enforcement action already planned and tacitly built in.
    DO NOT LET US SIGN THIS TREATY!

    1. a-tracy
      March 4, 2023

      The King realises but doesn’t care, the American pair feel that is why the lease ending on Frogmore Cottage was revealed to make headlines to take the photos of King Charles with Ursula off the newspages.

      John is in a big minority mancunius, this will glide through whatever John and our ultra-protectors try to do.

  62. Lindsay McDougall
    March 4, 2023

    You are right to be sceptical and the only sure fire way to determine whether the outcome is in practice acceptable is to give the people of Northern Ireland a referendum in (say) 5 years as to whether or not NI should remain in the EU Single Market.

  63. Denis Cooper
    March 4, 2023

    I fully expect that like my last comment this will not be published, but here we go from December 4 2017:

    https://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2017/12/04/two-views-of-brexit/#comment-905136

    “I watched the press conference in Dublin and for the Irish government the sticking point is that there must be no “hard border” with Northern Ireland. But when it came to questions from the assembled journalists not one of them thought to ask what was meant by a “hard border”.”

    “My own conclusion is that it’s pointless trying to negotiate about this with people who adopt such an absurd, extreme and intransigent position, and rather than faff around trying to find a form of words which everyone can accept but each can interpret in a different way, and which may well weaken our Union, Theresa May should just say now that the UK will no longer seek any “deep and special” trade deal with the EU but will trade on WTO terms, and the Irish government can like it or lump it.”

    Well, since then it has become public knowledge what they meant by a “hard border”:

    https://drb.ie/articles/the-professional/

    “any checks or controls anywhere on the island would constitute a hard border.”

    https://www.rte.ie/news/2019/0930/1079268-reaction-non-paper/

    “No matter where you locate check sites – they amount to a hard border.”

    That includes a farmyard in Ballymena, nearly the furthest you can get from the border:

    https://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/opinion/columnists/ben-lowry-unionist-choice-on-deal-is-not-as-said-between-the-unpalatable-and-the-disastrous-as-between-two-disasters-4050686

    “Simon Coveney told an audience in Belfast that the Irish government would not accept checks even if they took place at a farmyard in Ballymena, because it would still be border infrastructure and “we will not stand for it”.”

    Because the plan was to keep Northern Ireland in the EU trading bloc with the Republic:

    http://johnredwoodsdiary.com/2023/03/03/the-protocol/#comment-1375461

    and that is what has now been confirmed, with some derogations on goods from GB.

  64. Denis Cooper
    March 5, 2023

    The ERG needs to insist on a reasonable unilateral withdrawal mechanism being added to the agreement.

    We have already seen how the agreement did not work well in its original form/interpretation and there are already very serious doubts about its new form/interpretation and we definitely need an exit clause.

  65. […] The Protocol needs an exit route for the UK and should leave us in charge of our laws and taxes – John Redwood […]

  66. […] The Protocol needs an exit route for the UK and should leave us in charge of our laws and taxes – John Redwood […]

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