Brexit Phase Two Gets Go Ahead – Sufficient Progress Reached

EU leaders have agreed Brexit negotiations can move on to the second phase after they agreed “sufficient progress” was reached. European Council President Donald Tusk tweeted his “congratulations” to Theresa May. The phase two talks concern a trade deal and the framework for the ‘future relationship’. All eyes on the “end state” Cabinet meeting…

Question Time’s Brexit Hero

Last Question Time of the year last night and this Brexiteer’s contribution might just be the best of the 2017 series. The audience member tore into both Nicky Morgan and Rebecca Long-Bailey over their respective failings on Brexit – then Isabel Oakeshott roasted NiMo for her rebellion. Good stuff…

Tory MP: Brexit Rebels Betrayed Voters

Tory MP Henry Smith reflecting the feelings of the vast majority of his colleagues…

Soubry: A Vote for Me is ‘Vote for May’ and ‘Good Brexit Deal’

Anna Soubry’s rebellion was in spite of her election promise to Broxtowe voters that: “if you vote for me, it is also a vote for Theresa May” and claim that people should vote for her “to get a good deal for Brexit”. Soubry’s constituency is majority (54.6%) leave. Did she mislead her majority leave constituents?

Late last night Soubs tweeted apparently in support of arch-remainer Andrew Adonis’s suggestion that this was the “first step towards defeat of Brexit.”

Does she endorse Adonis’s suggestion?

Rebel Remainer Booze Up to Celebrate Defeating Government

The Tory rebel Remainers celebrated defeating the government and provoked fury among colleagues by downing glasses of white wine in the Pugin Room following the vote. Rebel ringleaders Anna Soubry, Antoinette Sandbach, Heidi Allen and Bob Neill got the party started, jubilantly scrolling through Twitter on their phones before they were joined by Nicky Morgan and chief Brexit-hater Dominic Grieve, who was applauded on his way in.

The festivities went down like a cup of sick with fellow Tory MPs, one of whom commented: “If I did what they did and started quaffing champagne afterwards I would expect to be deselected”. Another watching MP said of the raucous Remainer party: “Just when the polls had started to turn these sh*ts hand the momentum back to Labour”. A Number 10 aide hit back at Soubry’s claim to have put party before country: “Total rubbish for the Remainers to say they have put country before party. All they’ve done is damage the UK’s position going into the negotiations”. Stephen Hammond has already been sacked from his job as party vice-chairman tonight, expect there to be local consequences for the other rebels too… 

Remainers Win Brexit Blocking Vote

The government has been defeated on what remainers refer to as a “meaningful vote” on the final Brexit deal – but what is really a naked attempt to subvert the referendum result.

MPs voted 309 to 305 for Dominic Grieve’s amendment. The government lost by four votes.

Stay tuned for the Tory rebels…

UPDATE: 12 rebels confirmed as Morgan, Neill, Sandbach, Soubry, Stevenson, Wollaston, Allen, Clarke, Djanogly, Grieve, (Stephen) Hammond, Heald.

Top 20 Brexit Wrecking MPs Signed 193 Amendments Each

These are the 20 remain-backing MPs who signed the most amendments to vital EU legislation in a co-ordinated attempt to stop Brexit. On average, this group of hardcore Brexit-blockers signed 193 amendments each across the ‘Article 50 Bill’ (European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill) and the ‘Repeal Bill’ (European Union (Withdrawal) Bill). Despite warnings not to use amendments to frustrate or delay Brexit, these legislators put their name to a ridiculous number of them, including to blatant ‘wrecking amendments’. Moreover, 16 of them also voted against triggering Article 50. Guido expects their email inboxes will be very full tonight…

Juncker Facing Criminal Probe Into His Wiretapping Scandal

Always-dodgy EU-fantatic Jean-Claude Juncker was ousted as Luxembourg’s Prime Minister in 2013 after a string of wiretap allegations erupted into a full-blown spy scandal – and now a new criminal investigation threatens to bring him down again. A Luxembourg judge has launched a probe into whether officials working for then Prime Minister Juncker falsified evidence for parliamentary and judicial inquiries. The scandal surrounds Juncker’s alleged misuse of Luxembourg’s MI5, the Service de Renseignement de l’État Luxembourgeois (SREL), which was under the authority of his office. It was claimed that during Juncker’s tenure:

  • The SREL illegally bugged politicians, which Juncker failed to stop;
  • Juncker gave spies permission to intercept the telephone calls of their own sources, one of whom said they had a recording of a conversation between Juncker and Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg;
  • Marco Mille, SREL’s former director, claimed he had a recording made on a ‘James Bond’ wristwatch that proved Juncker had given his permission for the phone-tapping;
  • SREL officers bought cars for private use using public cash;
  • Mr Juncker appointed his driver as a spy after he told the PM he wanted a more exciting life.

Juncker is now facing accusations that his former officials gave false evidence under oath during the official investigations into the scandal. Last month Juncker said he was too busy to attend a cross-examination – pressure is now being put on him to testify. A Commission spokesman said: “He is very willing to testify as a witness but it happens that he is also president of the EC, so we have to find a date that matches his institutional obligations.” Juncker’s evasiveness tells its own tale…

Tom Brake: Media Aren’t “Patriotic” Enough

This is what the LibDems said when Andrea Leadsom called on the media to be more patriotic:

“This is a sinister threat to the free media. How dare Andrea Leadsom tell the press what they should think, this isn’t a George Orwell book. She needs to apologise for these comments and realise what she said was frankly stupid.”

Yet today top LibDem Tom Brake says the right-wing press

“… Don’t have the patriotism or honesty to point out the failings of a Conservative govt. and its approach to Brexit.”

So when Brexiteers call for patriotic coverage they’re “a sinister threat to the free media” but when Tom Brake does it it’s fine?

BBC Hypes Gloomy Brexit Report By EU-Funded Think Tank

The second main story on BBC News all day has been a report by an American think tank warning that “nearly all” the possible outcomes of Brexit will see the UK worse off than staying in the EU. Of course the Rand Corporation, which published the report, is funded by the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Union Research Executive Agency. Not that the Beeb thought to mention that…

Guido has read the Rand report so you don’t have to. It is filled with flaws and biases – for example it says the Brexit bill will be up to €75 billion (fact check: it’s between £35-39 billion). The report looks at many types of supposed models for Brexit, but it bizarrely doesn’t assess the outcome of the UK signing trade deals with multiple countries, one of the main reasons for leaving: “We did not explore the… model in which the UK would complete FTAs with numerous countries”. This is the government’s plan, why is it not included in the study?

Then there is the model Rand say they have used to determine their figures – it is the same as the infamous Treasury model that wrongly predicted a calamitous aftermath of a Leave vote. Debunked…

The report admits that “research for this study was completed as of 15 September 2017”. Eh? Quite a lot has happened since September – not least talks moving onto phase 2 when just a few months ago Remainers said they were doomed. Maybe if the study was up to date they’d have got the Brexit bill right…

And remember how the Beeb noted that “nearly all” of the outcomes were dire? What their coverage didn’t mention today is Rand’s finding that if the UK agrees FTAs with both the EU and the US we would see double the amount of GDP growth than any one of the so-called soft Brexit scenarios. Odd that this finding was missing from the BBC’s own coverage…

UPDATE: And the Rand report finds almost no difference in terms of GDP impact between the EEA minus or CETA plus models.

Commission Confirms ‘Legally Binding’ Row Confected

Once again it falls to Guido to point out the nonsense being pushed by Remainers today. The latest “row” confected by pro-Remain elements of the media claims David Davis committed some heinous gaffe by noting that last week’s deal is not strictly speaking legally binding. Today’s Times leader accuses DD of “undermining” the deal, taking the Guy Verhofstadt line that his comments “undermined trust”. Except, as with everything Verhofstadt says, this isn’t based in reality…

Yesterday a spokesman for the European Commission confirmed the deal is “formally speaking not legally binding”, and that it was merely an agreement “between gentlemen”. In other words Davis was right. Even the Remainers’ preferred legal expert Gina Miller agreed that it isn’t legally binding on Marr on Sunday. Davis and Verhofstadt have spoken this afternoon to agree to “get it converted into legal text as soon as possible”, something which has to be done because it isn’t binding in its current form. Guido is sure someone at the Commission could explain this slowly to the Times’ Brexit-hating leader writers…

Brussels Booze-Up Bonanza as MEPs’ Bar, Restaurant and Lounge Renovated

Brussels is set for booze-up bonanza after the European Parliament announced it is renovating the MEPs’ restaurant and lounge – and to make up for the inconvenience has built a new bar costing €200,000. Refurbishment works in the Altiero Spinelli building will begin in January and last for six months. MEPs received a note on their intranet informing them:

“In the framework of the catering policy adopted by the Bureau… to better accommodate Members’ needs and to adapt and modernise existing infrastructures, a refurbishing project of the Members’ restaurant and lounge in Brussels will start next year…To ensure high quality and functional service to Members’ parliamentary work, the Members’ Bar next to the Hemicycle in Strasbourg has been extended with new facilities.”

In April the European Parliament approved plans for the new 80-seat bar in Strasbourg, which replaced a library. There is also another bar in the Altiero Spinelli building which will remain open during the refurb. Guido has asked how much the latest renovations will cost. UKIP MEP Jonathan Bullock told Guido:

“It’s amazing they are making this a priority- we will of course make full use of the extended bar to celebrate Brexit when it finally comes!”

What are you drinking Jean-Claude?

Labour’s “Easy Movement” Muddle

Unlucky Dawn Butler was tasked with explaining what Keir Starmer’s proposals for “easy movement” of people means this afternoon, and she did not rule out it could entail unlimited number of EU migrants coming to the UK after Brexit. Speaking on the Daily Politics, the Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities seemed unsure what Labour’s position on free movement would mean for migration:

“It means that… there has to be movement… well, that is something that he will then develop in terms of detail… we will need movement in people… we will need movement of people but it won’t look exactly as it looks now…”

Butler went on to say: “we never talk about caps on numbers.” Asked whether Labour’s proposals could mean an unlimited number of EU migrants coming to the UK, Butler said:

“I think to be honest that’s part of the negotiations… if we were round the negotiating table we could come back with more detail”

Meanwhile, the Labour manifesto opposes continued free movement. “Easy” movement not quite so easy…

DD Slaps Down Hammond on Divorce Bill

David Davis says Philip Hammond was “not right” to suggest Britain would pay exit money to the EU under any circumstances. Hammond made the comments in a select committee appearance earlier this week. DD said on Marr this morning:

“It is conditional on an outcome… it is conditional on an implementation period, a trade outcome and also the other elements of the treaty, security, foreign affairs…”

Sorry Phil…

Labour Won’t Rule Out Second Referendum, More Payments, “Easy If Not Free” Movement

Keir Starmer didn’t deny that Britain would become a “vassal state” of the EU under his proposals in a revealing interview that showed his party’s true colours on Brexit. Labour’s Shadow Brexit Secretary repeatedly refused to rule out his party backing a second referendum, saying only: “we haven’t called for a second referendum”. Under Labour’s proposed ‘Norway style’ treaty, Starmer accepted that there would be:

  • Continuing payments to the EU (“Norway pays money in, there may have to be payments”);
  • Close to free cross-border movement of labour, described as “easy movement if not free” (“the end of free movement does not mean no movement… of course we would want people to come from the EU to work here”);
  • Continued mapping of EU regulations and standards with a copy and paste approach – but with no say over them.

Starmer also didn’t deny that he would rather Britain stayed in the single market outright. This was a significant interview where Starmer showed his true hand. Labour has nothing to offer Brexit voters…

Khan Gets Brexit-Bashing Corbynistas To Write His ‘Independent’ Impact Papers

Sadiq Khan might be on the other side of the world but that isn’t stopping him trying to grab headlines in remain papers: he announced today he is preparing his own Brexit impact papers on London. The reports, examining nine sectors, will be published next month. Sounds like a job for some independent experts, right?

Khan has commissioned Cambridge Econometrics, of which Jeremy Corbyn’s loudmouth ‘economics guru’ Richard Murphy is a director. Murphy adheres to the Corbynista creed of high taxing, high spending (he wrote a book called ‘The Joy of Tax’, which is a bit of a giveaway). Even The Guardian found Murphy immodest: he said in an interview “I’m well aware that there is one Treasury minister who is now referring to me as the Right Honourable Lord Murphy.” Murphy also claimed he was set for a SpAd job in the Shadow Treasury team. John McDonnell didn’t see it that way…

Murphy’s entirely glum outlook on Brexit is a matter of record. Check out his prediction that Britain would be in a recession in the event of a Leave win:

“I would argue recession is unavoidable. Investment in the UK will go on hold during renegotiation. No big business is going to sink millions or even billions into our economy without knowing what the future terms of UK trade might be. In itself this will be enough to trigger recession”

Nice one, professor…

And what of Murphy’s attitude towards those who support Brexit? In a piece entitled ‘The poverty of Brexit’, he argues Brexiteers are “intellectually bankrupt”:

“Those with a certain political philosophy are even more intellectually bankrupt than even the most sceptical of us thought. More worrying is what follows. Actual poverty will increase as a result of these failures. And that matters.”

Unsurprisingly, Cambridge Econometrics has already predicted that Brexit will harm the UK economy:

“The consensus among economists is that Brexit is likely to have a negative net effect on the economy. Losses are likely to outweigh any economic gains, in both the short and the long run.”

The organisation also said Brexit would harm economic growth:

“In the short term, we expect continued uncertainty to dampen growth, as business investment and household consumption weaken.”

Moreover, the firm’s managing director, Philip Summerton, regularly re-tweets prominent Remainers including Chuka Umunna, Caroline Lucas and Will Straw. Guido thinks he can guess what the conclusion of Khan’s impact papers will be…

Barnier Shuts Down Remainers’ Single Market Fantasy

The remain narrative on continuing membership of the single market was fully shut down by Michel Barnier this morning as Chuka Umunna, Nicola Sturgeon and Sadiq Khan’s fantasies were blown out of the water. This remain triumvirate tried to spin regulatory alignment to suggest Scotland and London could remain in the single market. Chuka even called for permanent membership of the single market after the transition…

Asked if the deal meant that the default position is remaining in the single market, Barnier said:

“No. You havent understood that well… beyond its decision to leave the EU… the British government has confirmed that it wishes also to leave the single market and the customs union which is not obligatory. There are countries who are not E.U. members, who are part because that is their wish, whilst respecting of the rules of the single market. But that’s not the choice taken by the UK. So you have not understood that well.”

No doubt this pack of remain rabble-rousers will jump to correct their statements…

Brexit Bill £35-39 Billion: What the Papers Said

The Brexit bill of £35-39 billion (as is being reported) is way less than the newspapers have been telling us it would be over the last few months. The Sunday Times reckoned May would agree to a £50 billion bill, the Telegraph said she had been handed a £50 billion bill by Brussels, most other papers ended up at a figure of €60 billion, the Express feared it could rise as high as €90 billion, and who can forget the FT taking copy from the Commission: “EU raises UK Brexit bill to €100 billion as Paris and Berlin harden stance”. In the end the profundity of the Remain punditry has ended up providing some handy expectations management for Downing Street, who can call this a significant win. A price well worth paying for Brexit…

UPDATE: Special mentions to Matt Holehouse who called it at £40 billion and Harry Cole who called it at £38 billion.

May and Juncker Announce Deal

The news you’re waking up to this morning is that a deal has been reached in Phase One of the Brexit negotiations and ‘sufficient progress’ has been declared, paving the way for trade talks. Read the deal in full here

Deal Done: Read In Full

Phase 1 Joint Report by Ross Kempsell on Scribd

That “full alignment” line is worrying Leavers this morning…[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

Former public schoolboy Chuka Umunna told the  ‘Exit From Brexit Dinner’…

“Remainians, Remoaners, I don’t care what the label is, I’m proud. It’s fashionable to label everyone in this room as the liberal metropolitan elite . . . This caricature is promoted by a bunch of former public schoolboys!” 

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.
Open Britain Spinning About Trade Deals Open Britain Spinning About Trade Deals
Soubry: Vote for Me is A Vote for ‘Theresa May and Good Brexit Deal’ Soubry: Vote for Me is A Vote for ‘Theresa May and Good Brexit Deal’
Top 20 Brexit Blocking MPs Signed 193 Amendments Each Top 20 Brexit Blocking MPs Signed 193 Amendments Each
Juncker Facing Criminal Probe After Spy Scandal Juncker Facing Criminal Probe After Spy Scandal
BBC Hypes Gloomy Brexit Report By EU-Funded Think Tank BBC Hypes Gloomy Brexit Report By EU-Funded Think Tank
Brussels Booze-Up Bonanza Brussels Booze-Up Bonanza
Labour Peddle More Animal Sentience Fake News Labour Peddle More Animal Sentience Fake News
Labour’s “Easy Movement” Muddle Labour’s “Easy Movement” Muddle
UK Number One Developed Economy For New Business UK Number One Developed Economy For New Business
Sunday Show Highlights Sunday Show Highlights
Khan Gets Brexit-Bashing Corbynistas To Write His ‘Independent’ Impact Papers Khan Gets Brexit-Bashing Corbynistas To Write His ‘Independent’ Impact Papers
WATCH: Barnier Shuts Down Remainers’ Single Market Fantasy WATCH: Barnier Shuts Down Remainers’ Single Market Fantasy
Brexit Bill £35-39 Billion: What the Papers Said Brexit Bill £35-39 Billion: What the Papers Said
Senior Brexiteers Back Deal Senior Brexiteers Back Deal
Deal Done: Read in Full Deal Done: Read in Full
Watch: Moment May and Juncker Announce Deal Watch: Moment May and Juncker Announce Deal
Watch: May Not Bringing Brexiteers With Her Watch: May Not Bringing Brexiteers With Her
Boris: Whole of UK Must Take Back Control Boris: Whole of UK Must Take Back Control
Gisela: Regulatory Alignment “Completely Unacceptable”, Doesn’t Respect Referendum Gisela: Regulatory Alignment “Completely Unacceptable”, Doesn’t Respect Referendum
CBI: Brexit the Worst Thing to Happen In Any Country in the World Ever CBI: Brexit the Worst Thing to Happen In Any Country in the World Ever