Friday, 13 September 2019

When Boris decided to back Leave he said ‘Brexit will be crushed’

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David Cameron, in an interview in the Times published a few minutes ago to plug his memoirs which are coming out this weekend, said that when Boris made the decision to back Leave he said, ‘Brexit will be crushed.’ 

It isn't clear from the interview if he said this to David Cameron but I presume so.


He complains that the Leave camp made much of Turkey joining the EU but this was very reasonable and right of them. Turkey is supposed to - although it will not happen while Mr Erdogan is in power. Mr. Cameron told the Turkish government that he was trying hard to achieve membership for Turkey.

The morning after the referendum, Mr Cameron rang President Obama and European leaders "repeating to each a short speech of regret that was not quite an apology". It sounds like it was close to one if you ask me. I don't like a British Prime Minister apologising for his actions to foreign powers and particularly not to President Obama.

Mr. Cameron would have favoured a “partnership Brexit”, co-operating rather than battling with Europe and cooperating with opposition parties. 

He might have a point. Theresa May handled things so badly. Now I'd settle for a partnership Brexit in the form of a Norway-style deal, but I'd much prefer a Canada-type
deal, if it is still on offer. Both require a real border in Ireland and that seems to me to be perfectly normal. A free trade deal would make the border less problematic than if tariffs need to be collected. A Canada dry deal could lead to a bonfire of regulations and Singapore on the Thames, which will not appeal to Labour voters who voted Leave, nor to Frau Merkel.

Yet I think a  more combative approach, planning for no deal from the day after the referendum result and refusing to use the Article 50 process, would have been a better way to get to a solution that pleased us and satisfied Europe.

Once David Cameron would have been the type of clever liberal conservative I'd have liked, apart from his bringing in single sex marriage and changing the rules of succession to the throne, but now I see he is a not a Tory but a Whig, like Sir Ian Gilmour and other Tories who claimed to be Disraelians. 

What a shame that William Hague left politics. He might have been a good man to have taken us out of Europe, as might Michael Gove had he stood from the first rather than supporting Boris and then stabbing him in the front. So might Michael Portillo or Michael Howard, had they wished to return to politics. But I hope Boris will do a good job, if he can escape like Houdini from the bondage vile in which the House of Commons, Speaker Bercow and Tony Blair have placed him.

The interview was held two weeks ago, though published today. Mr Cameron has since sent the journalist a letter in which he said

"Taking the whip from hard-working Conservative MPs and sharp practices using prorogation of Parliament have rebounded. I didn’t support either of those things. Neither do I think a no-deal Brexit is a good idea.”
Some will think he sounds like a girly swot. I couldn't possibly comment on that, except to say a no-deal Brexit is something we'd all like to avoid, if a reasonable deal can be done, including of course Boris. 

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