The EU has grown weary of the Brexit negotiations and now sees a no deal WTO Brexit as the lesser of two evils.
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It seems that the budding EU superstate is getting tired of our attempts to renegotiate Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement, or did Brussels write it I forget?
Anyway they've got fed up with it and the EU has itself now plonked its own prospect of a no-deal Brexit onto the table.
So our parliament has told the government and Eurocrats in one non-binding vote that a no deal is unacceptable and in another vote instructed the PM to go back to the Eurocrats and say the current Withdrawal Agreement is unsatisfactory because the backstop part needs to be replaced with something more to our liking.
And the instant response from Brussels was we're not changing the Withdrawal Agreement and if you don't like it as it currently stands, then we'd prefer to let a no deal exit happen than go through the painful exercise of levering it open and letting all those worms out.
The Independent reports that Belgian MEP Philippe Lamberts, who is on the European Parliament Brexit Steering Group, said his side thinks that doing what the UK government asks would hurt the integrity of the single market more than a WTO Brexit would. "And, therefore," he said, "if we have a choice to make between two evils then, well, no deal is the lesser evil."
And the President of the EU Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, as well as the EU's chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, both said today that the Withdrawal Agreement would not be reopened, with Juncker going further and saying that the chances of a WTO Brexit had increased.
The BBC's Nick Robinson Tweeted that it appears that the EU is playing hardball in the hope that the UK parliament will put a stop to the no-deal option and come around to a permanent customs union type approach.
And the BBC itself reports that the European press has lost patience with the UK.
Der Spiegel for example says that the Spanish will be straight on this demanding that Gibraltar be handed over to them and other countries will queue up to make similar demands of us like free access to our fishing grounds and the like.
And be in no doubt, as I've said many times before, if we go to them with an Article 50 extension request to allow for more negotiating time, we'll get exactly the same response.
So, to sum up – our MPs blinked by – one – voting against a no deal, albeit a non-binding vote and – two – they want to talk some more and the response from Brussels is to get their knuckledusters out.
How predictable was that and how stupid of our MPs, actually it's probably more calculation that stupidity – they blinked, probably on purpose.
Several of those so-called representatives of ours said, during that wasted debate in the House of Commons, that the UK threat of a no deal was not working any more so it should be taken off the table.
But once they make it look like we've ditched it by them voting against it, the EU tries to turn the tables on us by putting it straight back on the table and I can bet you that our MPs will now wail about the increased chances of a no-deal – so proving that the threat works against them. You could not make this stuff up!
They'll run around like headless chickens clucking and squawking looking for the currently non-existent Exit from Brexit!
They have actually done the Leave campaign a massive service by ensuring that Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement is unsalvageable, while probably crippling any chance of their dream of an Article 50 extension.
They have also allowed the EU to now state its own red lines of a permanent customs union! And those red lines are not compatible with any true form of Brexit – and the public knows it.
What are the Remainer MPs going to do in the next 58 days?
What will they do when the EU says no to any renegotiation of that Brexit In name Only deal that might actually have got us back in the EU?
What will they do when the EU27 says no to an Article 50 extension, if we ask for one?
What are they going to do if the EU gets to the end of its tether and says, it's now a WTO Brexit or it's up to you, the UK, to unilaterally revoke the Article 50 letter itself and reverse Brexit completely – if you want to?
Over the last few months, every time I've played this out in my mind I keep getting to that scenario where it's a choice between a full no deal WTO exit or the cancellation of Brexit altogether.
And either choice will require primary legislation to be rushed through the house.
And because of the short time frame involved that will end up being a decision for the Prime Minister then parliament, or if the PM bottles it, that choice will end up falling to Parliament alone.
So, please let us all know how you think it will pan out by leaving a comment below.
Thank you for watching.
EU & Ireland seem to be playing hardball in belief that Commons will stop no deal Brexit & a cross party coalition for a customs union would be a better bet than a Tory party deal to ditch the backstop &/or go for a managed no deal
— Nick Robinson (@bbcnickrobinson) January 30, 2019