It is reported that mutinous Tory MPs are now lining up behind David Davis to replace Theresa May.

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The admission that her government was even looking at the idea of extending the Brexit transition period may have overly weakened Theresa May's position and be the straw that breaks the camel's back for many Tory MPs, opening the way for a leadership challenge.

It is also rumoured that another two letters of no confidence in the Tory leader have recently been deposited in the safe of the chairman of the party's backbench 1922 committee.

And Tory Brexiteer MP, Nadine Dorries, has been attempting to fire up her fellow MPs Tweeting:

If Theresa May is asking for a longer transition period, she is stalling.

“It’s time to stand aside and let someone who can negotiate get on with it and deliver.

“I fully support DD as an interim leader. I’ve done my bit. It’s time for my colleagues to do theirs.

Presumably referring to David Davis.

And the Telegraph political correspondent, Christpopher Hope, Tweeted:

"Are you sitting comfortably? Some Tory MPs tell me David Davis is being lined up as an interim leader to take the UK through Brexit talks. DD – 70 in December – would then stand aside for a younger leader late next year."

All sounds nice, except for the fact that the Tory party is so weak in both Westminster and the polls that I wonder if they have the courage to do it.

Now, the EU chief Brexit negotiator has claimed that the referendum vote by 17.4 million of us to leave the bloc – was driven by nostalgia.

Talking to French radio he also asked if UK voters had been informed of all the facts and consequences.

In response the former Brexit secretary, David Davis said:

"I wouldn't confuse belief in the free market with nostalgia."

And the head of the Tory European Research Group, Jacob Rees-Mogg told the Mail:

"Democracy is not nostalgia and rejecting the EU’s outdated and failed economic model is not an unknown but a welcome consequence of leaving.

"The Eurocrats cannot understand that the writing is already on the wall."

But this comes on the news that the German chancellor, Angela Merkel and the French president, Emmanuel Macron have both urged Barnier to give a legal assurance to the UK that there will be no hard border in Ireland. But Barnier of course gets his instructions from the EU Commission, not from member state leaders – however powerful they think they may be.

Last night on Question Time, the shadow Brexit secretary, Keir Starmer said that the Tory government is hopelessly divided on Brexit. To which Conservative MP James Cleverly replied:

“The idea the Labour Party’s got a set position on this is comic.

“The Labour Party have more positions on Brexit than the Kama Sutra.”

Having Googled it and seen that the Kama Sutra has 64 different positions, then I would have to agree with James Cleverly.

Now to internal security. We've had one former head of MI6, Sir Richard Dearlove, warning of the risks to UK security if we remain tied to the European Union. So, just for balance another former boss of MI6, Sir John Sawers is saying that Brexit will make the UK more vulnerable to attacks like the recent event in Salisbury.

He told the World at One that Russia thought it could bully us because we look weak and isolated and that we were only strong in the end because we were able to carry the US and the EU with us.

This does seem a bit of a dubious argument to me. After all, as James Forsyth of the Spectator Tweeted:

"Ex MI6 boss John Sawers' argument that the Russians wouldn't have attempted the Skripal poisoning but for Brexit would carry more weight if the Russians hadn't killed Alexander Litvinenko with polonium in London in 2006, a decade before the Brexit vote."

There is also the possibility that the Kremlin wanted to get this done well before the UK tightened its borders up.

Just remember the images of the two suspected assassins sauntering through the airport security system. Let's consider:

None of the EU or our security services seemed to know about the pair, or they would have intervened one would hope.

If it was them, did they bring the poison in their hand luggage?

Was it in the aircraft hold?

Or did they meet up with a courier who passed it on to them?

Or is there a stash of it here always ready for use?

Or is there a secret Russian run poison factory here?

Absolutely none of those scenarios fills me with confidence that the current security system is up to dealing with that type of threat.

But what could deter them is the thought that more stringent basic border checks would catch them out.

Not only that, but a heightened fear of being caught could well make would be perpetrators more likely to trip themselves up with their behaviour and appearance, such as nervousness and sweating etc.

As to national weakness, that may well be a factor, but it will be the weakness May and her colleagues have shown over dealing with Brexit, not because the Brexit vote has made our borders any weaker, because it hasn't.

Anyway, I will point out that we did have the Georgi Markov poisoned umbrella case of 1978 on Waterloo Bridge right in the middle of the Cold War – so maybe it doesn't matter what we do, if those that would do us harm are committed enough.

But back then of course there was no widespread use of CCTV for surveillance etc.

On to the UK economy, the Chief Economist of Deutsche Bank, David Folkerts-Landau, told Bloomberg that he believes there will be a deal and that an extension to the transition phase wouldn't solve anything.

He also said that in his view there would be a price to pay for Brexit but over a 20-30 year horizon the UK will do just as well or better than the EU and come out looking just fine.

He also said that it was immature to think that Brexit was just about a couple of points of GDP, it went much deeper than that he said.

And he added that "…..the UK economy has the flexibility, it has it in its genes to do well, to be innovative, it doesn’t have this bureaucratic construct that the Europeans have to struggle with and it’s got flexible exchange rates!"

So, not quite the 'to hell in a handcart' scenario some would have you believe, is it?

And for those of you that haven't heard, that arch Remainer who said that talk of an EU army was a dangerous fantasy, Nick Clegg, – cue the boos and hisses – has been appointed by Facebook as its Vice President of Global Affairs and Communications – and no it is not April Fool's Day!

He starts work on Monday. But although he will be far away in California, the problem for us is that the effects of his work will be felt here in the UK.

And the BBC says that it understands that: "Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg were personally involved in the recruitment".

UKIP Tweeted out:

"The globalist political class and international corporations have been working hand in glove to stifle the free speech of those they disagree with. This appointment is a symptom of that project."

And former UKIP leader Nigel Farage Tweeted:

"Facebook have appointed globalist propagandist @nick_clegg as Vice President for Global Affairs, this is bad news for free speech."

I wonder if Zuckerberg and co think that after its recent attacks on the tech giants, the EU will look more favourably on Facebook now they've got an ardent Europhile on the books?

So, please let us all know what you think by leaving a comment below.

Thank you for watching.

Sources:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6294069/Merkel-Macron-tell-Barnier-flexible-Brexit-talks.html

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/blog/live/2018/oct/19/brexit-may-summit-tory-brexiters-would-vote-down-extra-payments-to-eu-for-longer-transition-says-rees-mogg-politics-live?page=with:block-5bc9cbc4e4b002841cd8ecf9#block-5bc9cbc4e4b002841cd8ecf9

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2018-10-18/deutsche-bank-says-post-brexit-u-k-has-potential-to-thrive-video

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgi_Markov

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-45913587

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