Boris Johnson by UK in Japan-FCO (CC-BY-2.0)

Image by UK in Japan-FCO (CC-BY-2.0)

The new Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has turbo charged Brexit with another £2.1 billion.

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In welcome news for Brexiteers and supporters of the Tory Party, Boris Johnson has given Brexit a boost with a further £2.1 billion no deal planning money, taking the total to £6.3 billion.

Announcing the extra Brexit dosh yesterday, the newly appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, said:

"With 92 days until the UK leaves the European Union it's vital that we intensify our planning to ensure we are ready.

"We want to get a good deal that abolishes the anti-democratic backstop. But if we can't get a good deal, we'll have to leave without one.

"This additional £2.1 billion will ensure we are ready to leave on the 31st of October – deal or no-deal."

The opposition is of course not at all happy, with the Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell, calling it "an appalling waste of taxpayers' cash" and adding that it was all about a Boris dash for an avoidable no deal Brexit and that the money could be better spent on schools, hospitals and people.

And the People's Vote campaign is also upset, putting out a statement heavily criticising the no deal funding as well as saying that the government has no right to take the country out of the EU without a deal and that "…their behaviour is an outrage against democracy."

So the country votes to leave, the UK parliament votes to trigger Article 50, then there's a snap general election where over 80% of the votes go to parties that say in their manifestoes that we're leaving the EU, parliament votes for the Withdrawal Act in 2018, so Parliament has voted in statute law to make the default position a no deal Brexit.

And all that is meant to be an outrage against democracy.

Anyway, the government says that the money will have to be spent on preparations to leave whether it be with or without a deal. And if we're definitely due to leave on the 31st of October then that money will of course have to be spent immediately.

So this has had some pundits questioning whether or not this is true 'no deal planning money' or just money being spent on general preparations to leave the EU being hailed as specifically for the no deal scenario, so as to put out a perception that the UK was going hard for no deal, all just for show.

We had the BBC's Naga Munchetty grilling the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rishi Sunak, this morning on that very point.

But the reality of course is that, if the government wasn't committing to this spending, then everyone would know that we weren't leaving the EU as advertised, wouldn't they?

And Rishi Sunak said that this money will be spent immediately on Border Force preparation, more Border Force staff, new customs procedures, making sure small businesses are prepared for the coming changes, to ensure the security of supply for medicines and the like, as well as making people fully aware of what is coming whether they live in the UK or are UK nationals living abroad.

And of course this is all money that should have been allocated and spent as of the 24th of June 2016 onwards, but was not.

And the way I look at this, it is not turbo-charging Brexit, or a no deal Brexit – it is turbo charging a UK democracy that had been left severely under-powered and eroded for many years by our membership of the EU.

Sources:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-49183324

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