What Makes Die-Hard Remainers Tick?

It is significant that die-hard Remainers make so many references to Trump and America as a way of labelling and dismissing Brexit. They cannot understand their own country or face up to what has happened, and so they disguise it as something else.

The Bruges Group: The Voting League Table of MPs

With a General Election around the corner, the most important question for voters is which MPs are committed to leaving the EU and delivering on the will of the people and which MPs have always been wedded to Europe and will stop at nothing to betray the result of the 2016 EU referendum? Parliament voted overwhelmingly to hold a referendum and then trigger Article 50, yet three years on from the referendum date and two extensions past the 31st March, the Commons needs a new election to chuck out the Remainers who refuse to support Brexit. MPs List Votes List For…

Proponents of the New Backbench Bill to Stop No Deal Face a Significant Dilemma over Queen’s Consent

The proponents of a new Bill to prevent No Deal are caught on the horns of a dilemma. If they had drafted a Bill that only mandated the PM to seek an extension, the PM would have been left free to refuse to agree any extension in negotiations with the EU27. However, Benn-Burt goes much further than Cooper-Letwin did (paras 30-32). It mandates that the PM must not only seek but also agree to an extension, either 31 January 2020 or another date if the House of Commons approves a date suggested by the EU27. Mandating that the PM agrees to an extension manifestly…

A Brexit Britain Can Help Avert a Global Trade War

Post-Brexit the UK can lead a global move to free trade. A UK/US FTA will markedly reduce UK consumer prices and business costs, and incentivise the EU to negotiate a trade deal with the UK free of legal subjugation and annual payments. A clear Free Trade strategy from a newly elected majority government will be needed to achieve this.

MPs Fears about the Economic Impact of ‘No Deal’ Make No Sense

Those MPs supporting Parliamentary efforts to prevent a ‘No deal’ Brexit largely avoid talking about democracy, independence, and sovereignty, where they are on weak ground. Instead they focus on the “catastrophic” economic damage they expect the UK to suffer if it leaves without a deal. But here too all the evidence suggests they are on equally weak ground Firstly, we need to stress that the very phrase ‘No Deal’ is a complete misnomer. There are already a series of mini deals in place – on issues such as trade facilitation, air travel, citizen’s rights, students, transport, security, – that would…

Brexit, Tariffs, and GATT’s Original Intent: Why a Forgotten MFN Exemption Merits a Closer Look

Exit from the EU on GATT/WTO terms is assumed to mean that the UK will find itself between a Scylla and Charybdis of either eliminating all tariffs on all countries or snapping into place tariffs on the remaining EU Member States at the same levels that the EU currently applies to the rest of the world. The most-favoured nation rule—MFN—is indeed an important tool of the world trade system, and if the UK and EU were complete strangers (and all else being equal) there is no doubt MFN would apply in that way between them, and between both of them…

The EU: No Friend of Workers’ Rights

It has become a mantra, endlessly repeated by Remainer trade unions: “Workers must not pay the price of Brexit.” What price would that be? And how about acknowledging the price to workers of staying in the EU? On 6 July 2017 Michel Barnier, the EU Brexit negotiator, addressed the EU’s Economic and Social Committee. His words were noted and passed on to unions in Britain by the TUC delegate to the committee under a title saying that Barnier ‘spells out the truth’ about Brexit. Barnier’s address, wrote Unite’s Martin Mayer with doe-eyed devotion, was ‘clinical in its analysis and impressive in its…

Six Ways We Can Be Sure Boris Is Serious

It seems increasingly likely that the next leader of the Conservatives, and UK Prime Minister, will be Boris Johnson. On the face of it, this looks like good news for supporters of Brexit given Johnson’s record on this issue and his recent statement that the UK will leave the EU by October 31 ‘do or die’. Yet given the history of the last two years, during which the genuine Brexit envisaged at Lancaster House was watered down to the Brexit in-name-only of Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement (WA), Brexit supporters should avoid euphoria and be very cautious. There were key moments…

The EU Will Reopen the Withdrawal Agreement

The EU and its apologists insist that it will not ‘reopen’ the WA. There are weak legal and political grounds for such a stance, whereas three strong political incentives exist within the EU to reach an agreement – and soon. But Britain’s new prime minister must convince the EU that he is determined to leave on October 31 if it continues to refuse satisfactory renegotiation. A commonly heard view recently is that, no matter who emerges as the next prime minister of the United Kingdom — on current form almost certainly Boris Johnson — the European Union will continue to…

Prorogation: The Historical Case for Constitutional Innovation

Should the prorogation of parliament be a possible course of action for a government? Is it an outrage against democracy and the constitution?  Rory Stewart threatens direct action, and Matt Hancock declares that such a thing “goes against everything those men who fought their way up those [D-Day] beaches died for.”  A leading constitutional historian looks here at the facts behind the hysteria. What, exactly, can a government do by exercising the royal prerogative? Like many great constitutional issues, this one exists in a grey area, grey for historical reasons. It is partly a consequence of old and seldom resolved disagreements about…

“Voices of Business”: Whose Voices, whose Businesses?

Caroline Fairbairn, director-general of the CBI, recently attempted to dictate policy to the future government in the name of British business. If we were to believe the so-called voices of business, the world would be flat and the UK about to fall off the edge on Brexit day. This recent manifestation of “Project Fear” Mark III, a blatant attempt to stop Brexit by organisations and businesses which have openly declared their opposition to it, is a shocking, anti-democratic act. Some simple facts should be noted when weighing the narrow self-interest on which these interventions are based. Only 8% of UK…

In the Marginals, It’s the Leavers Who Are in Revolt

The Remainers’ revolt is one of the most influential concepts in the number-crunching world of British politics. Some Conservative MPs fear that moving towards a hard Brexit could lose them key constituencies in the south of England. Labour is under pressure from its members to back a second referendum, lest they face a Remain backlash at the ballot box. But if we look at key marginals, we find that it is not the Remainers who are the real threat to two main parties. It’s the Leavers. The headline figures of the local elections seemed to imply the potency of this…

A New Prime Minister Must End the Treasury’s Anti-Brexit Propaganda Campaign

The UK Conservative party has now begun a search for a new leader, and thus a new British Prime Minister. Who may ultimately land this job is far from clear, but one thing is very clear: any new PM serious about delivering a genuine Brexit must end the anti-Brexit campaign that the UK Treasury has been waging since 2016 – and repudiate the analyses the Treasury has produced to date. The UK Conservative party has now begun a search for a new leader, and thus a new British Prime Minister. Who may ultimately land this job is far from clear,…

Vassalage or Power? Thoughts for Would-Be Prime Ministers

Tory leadership contenders (some of whom one is hard put even to identify) can spout as much nonsense as they like about renegotiating Theresa May’s ‘deal’ with the EU. But absolutely nothing has changed since she announced her departure and pulled publication of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill. It is still Groundhog May, as our soon-to-be retired Prime Minister pronounces the same old lines from Brussels about trying her best to deliver Brexit and Jean-Claude Juncker makes it plain – yet again – that the Withdrawal Agreement she signed (which, as Eurocrats helpfully explained in a revealing BBC4 documentary, turns us…

Brexit and the US-UK Defence Relationship

This is the transcript of Lecture at the Heritage Foundation, “Brexit and the US-UK Defense Relationship” given by Professor Gwythian Prins on 1 May 2019. A summary is on the Briefings for Brexit blog page.  Ted, colleagues at Heritage, distinguished ladies and gentlemen. I am honoured and grateful for the hospitality of your platform this afternoon so that I can share with you some insights into the least well discussed and yet in many ways the most dangerous aspect of the strategies by which Mrs May and her close advisers have failed to execute the instruction that I and 17.4 million fellow…

Just Leave!

Through the treachery of the government and MPs, Britain is in political and economic limbo. Instead of being free to taking back control, they have handed the future of the country over to the EU… Delay, and more delay. Britain is now going to be denied independence for up to 6 months longer, a total of three-and-a-half years after voting for it. The delay could be even longer, should the EU decide. Brexit could be revoked. This political paralysis is bad for Britain. Thanks to the independence saboteurs in parliament the country cannot move forward on any of the matters…

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