Image by The Jacques Delors Institute (CC-BY-2.0)
Daily Brexit Update: Saturday 21st July 2018
The EU chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, claimed yesterday that Theresa May's Chequers based deal would open the European Union up to fraud and also the need to create more red-tape. Barnier also questionned the practicality and legality of the White Paper proposals.
And on this side of the channel, the PM has slapped down Brexiteers by saying that they cannot just wash their hands of the Irish border issue and that the UK and EU need to ensure a 'seamless border'.
So, it looks like the Irish border must be solved by political means and the chequers deal is a dead duck after months (or maybe years) of work behind doors closed to ministers. Some think this is incompetence, others that it is part of the Remain plan:
You may be missing the point, Latimer. It seems to me that Olly planned for it to fail — maybe discussed it in advance with Barnier. He wants to create a situation where Brexit becomes impossible, and we all despair and give up. https://t.co/Y7NNVbYwg8
— Roger Helmer (@RogerHelmerMEP) July 21, 2018
And the UKIP leader, Gerard Batten, pushes the point on how the exit from the EU should be conducted:
Barnier has rejected May's plan. From the start I said the Remainer & EU strategy would be to delay & impede the process, & then overturn the Referendum. We are now at the third stage. Will May betray? Doesn't have to be like this. See my leaving plan: https://t.co/FEAUc8Pdbm pic.twitter.com/koek1RqxN9
— Gerard Batten MEP (@GerardBattenMEP) July 21, 2018
And while trying to solve the North/South Irish border issue the UK and the Republic of Ireland come to verbal exchanges over airspace. And the Irish taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, did not like being called an 'airhead' over the issue.
But the Republic does expect the Royal Air Force to jump to its aid by conducting armed operations over Ireland when needed, as the political commentator Guido Fawkes points out.
All this prompted Tory Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg to Tweet:
Today's aggressive comments by Messrs Varadkar and Barnier show why we are right to be leaving the mafia-like European Union.
— Jacob Rees-Mogg (@Jacob_Rees_Mogg) July 20, 2018
But on the trade front, although the EU has recently put together a successful EU/Japan trade deal (without Japan paying£39 billion for the honour, nor accepting freedom of movement of people, nor ECJ jurisdiction), the proposed EU/India deal looks to be on its last legs. Indian negotiators are now saying that it might be a good move to wait until the UK exits the EU as that is where most of the trade and investment lies.
On the EU and immigration, the plan to have so called 'disembarkation platforms' in Africa that would go a long way towards preventing the need for boats across the Med has hit a serious setback. Libya is refusing to host the proposed migrant centres.
And in very good news for Brexiteers, the first 'no-deal' Brexit legislation in the form of the Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Act gets Royal Assent.
Now for all those Social Justice Warriors out there who protested at Trump's visit to the UK. What are you going to be doing on Monday?
✅ Backs Iran
✅ Supports Hamas
✅ Persecutes gays
❌ Mass left wing protests https://t.co/gmTz24cMWY
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) July 20, 2018
And still banging on about a second referendum on UK membership of the EU is one Tony Blair (video):