Wednesday 20 March 2019

Mrs May asks for only a short delay (for now)

The Daily Telegraph just now:
Theresa May will today request a short extension of Article 50, a Downing Street source has said, warning that voters are "fed up with Parliament's failure to take a decision".

The Prime Minister will later publish a letter, to be sent to Donald Tusk, the European Council president, which will ask Brussels to agree to a delay.

Mrs May had been expected to request a lengthy extension of up to nine months.
This was the secret decision that Mrs. May refused to share with the cabinet yesterday, even though under the British constitution we have cabinet government and the Prime Minister is only first among equals. 

It may be a surprise to the writer but not to me - because she had no alternative. A longer
delay would mean letting the people speak by taking part in the European toy parliament elections. That could have destroyed both the Conservative and Labour parties, and still
might, but especially the former who have had a thousand days to get us out of the EU and seem nowhere near it so far. 

It might also have been refused by the EU who do not like Nigel Farage any more than Viktor Orban.

A long delay would also probably lead to cabinet resignations by Brexiteers, though some Brexiteers thinks a long delay much better than Mrs. May's deal. 

The decision today comes after David Lidington, the Deputy Prime Minister, said on Thursday:

In the absence of a deal, seeking such a short and critically one-off extension would be downright reckless and completely at odds with the position this House adopted only last night making a no-deal far more rather than less likely.

In the words of the late 1970s comedy show Soap

Confused? You will be.

Famous Brexiteer Daniel Hannan, MEP, makes the case here that Mrs May's proposals are worse than staying in the EU.

Clever Leaver Juliet Samuel makes a surprisingly good case for the proposals and the backstop ('Brexiteers should stop fretting and learn to love the backstop') here. She says:

the backstop delivers a huge swathe of Britain’s Brexit demands. It ends free movement, fully removes fish, farming and services industries (the last being 80 per cent of GDP) from the EU, ends all EU budget payments and massively reduces the jurisdiction of the EU courts over this country.

It’s true that any guarantees made to the DUP over regulatory alignment will limit some of these newfound freedoms, but only insofar as they affect the tiny volume of goods sold from Great Britain to Northern Ireland each year (0.5 per cent of GDP).

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