Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson “What a good time to get out” of EU

After Macron’s speech Bruce says it is time to “run to the hills”….

Juncker: Thanks For Saving Us in The War, Now You Must Pay

Jean-Claude Juncker today:

“If you are sitting in a bar and if you are ordering 28 beers and then suddenly some of your colleagues is leaving and he’s not paying, that is not feasible. They have to pay. They have to pay. Not in an impossible way. I’m not in a revenge mood – I am not hating the British. The Europeans have to be grateful for so many things Britain has brought to Europe – during war, after war, before war, everywhere and every time. But now they have to pay.”

Did he have an extra cognac with breakfast this morning?

Starmer Admits Public Clueless as to Labour’s Brexit Policy


Labour’s Brexit confusion has rubbed off on the public who are clueless as to the party’s position on the issue. Newsnight aired vox pops last night in front of an embarrassed Keir Starmer. Emily Mailtis told the Shadow Brexit Secretary: “there was no one who understood what Labour believes on Brexit”. Starmer admitted:

“I appreciate that, we’ve obviously got to do much more work communicating our message.”

Need to decide what their message is first…

See also: All Labour’s Different Brexit Positions [VIDEO]

Lawson: Sack Saboteur Hammond

Nigel Lawson calls for Philip Hammond to go: “what he is doing is very close to sabotage”. Strong words summing up some of the Brexiteer feeling towards the Chancellor this week…

74% Say No Deal is Better Than A Bad Deal

The vast majority of the public believes “no deal is better than a bad deal” according to this new Sky Data poll. A decisive 74% agreed the country should walk away rather than accept a punishment deal. Just 26% think “any deal is better than no deal”…

The sentiment holds true across the age range. Among 18-34 year-olds support for “no deal is better than a bad deal” is at 75%. Among 35-54 year-olds it is 74% and 76% among those aged 55+. Near universal support for no deal among the public and yet the government is doing little to prepare…

Finger-Wagging Barnier: “Brexit Is Not A Game”

Lunch is over in Brussels. Asked whose court the ball is in, Barnier wagged his finger and sniffed:

“Brexit is not a game, don’t forget”

It is Barnier who is playing games

18 Labour MEPs Who Voted Against Britain’s Interests

These are the 18 Labour MEPs who voted against moving Brexit negotiations onto the next stage, against Britain’s national interest. The Tories took swift action, withdrawing the whip from two of their MEPs who rebelled. David Davis wrote to Jeremy Corbyn asking that he take action against the below Labour MEPs:

  1. Lucy Anderson, London
  2. Paul Brannen, North East England 
  3. Richard Corbett, Yorkshire and the Humber
  4. Seb Dance, London
  5. Neena Gill, West Midlands
  6. Theresa Griffin, North West England
  7. Mary Honeyball, London
  8. John Howarth, South East England 
  9. Wajid Khan, North West England
  10. Jude Kirton-Darling, North East England
  11. David Martin, Scotland
  12. Alex Mayer, East of England
  13. Linda McAvan, Yorkshire and the Humber 
  14. Claude Moraes, London 
  15. Simon West, Midlands 
  16. Catherine Stihler, Scotland
  17. Derek Vaughan, Wales
  18. Julie Ward, North West England 

Still waiting…

Clegg: I’m In Favour of Remoan

Nick Clegg momentarily revealed the truth on the Today programme this morning:

“I believe and I explain this in my book that MPs are duty bound, regardless of whether they’re in favour of remoan – remain – or Brexit, to reject that deal…”

Freudian slip…

Denmark Tells EU to Stop Playing Games and Move on to Next Stage of Talks

Denmark has warned the EU to stop playing “games” over the Brexit divorce bill and has urged Brussels to begin talks on trade. Finance minister Kristian Jensen says:

“In any political negotiations, there is not enough time, not enough money, not enough this, not enough that. This is part of the game. Because what we are dealing with here is not rocket science… We are now on the same page … In my view it is rather important we get into a more close and more speedy process on concluding some of the issues… The UK is a great trading partner of EU27, a strong ally in defence and security, so we need to find out how we can have a good and close relationship post-Brexit… it is important that both sides are ready and able to move on. Because otherwise we get into an endgame where things are very precious on time and therefore a greater risk of making decisions that are not welcome.” 

Helpful reminder to ultra-Remainers over here that it is the EU who are not behaving reasonably…

Former Brexit Minister: Government Must Publish No Deal Plans

The queues to see Leave Means Leave’s Jacob Rees-Mogg event at the Radisson were so long the police had to be called to keep order. In the absence of any real news the Mogg is the box office figure at conference so far. A who’s who of Brexiters turned up to hear him this evening including David Davis, his SpAd Stewart Jackson and Brexit minister Steve Baker. The Mogg warned that “organisations within the state” are working against Brexit, naming the Home Office as a potential threat to Brexit and warning: “I am very suspicious of Her Majesty’s Treasury”. He told the room it was in civil servants’ interests to delay Brexit and laid into the BBC, whose coverage since the referendum he labelled “absolutely appalling”. In the heat a lady fainted, the Mogg leapt to her side like an ambitious MP in a room full of Tory members…

Aside from the Moggmania, the most interesting comments came from former Brexit minister David Jones. With his old boss looking on, Jones insisted DExEU is making preparations for a no deal scenario, but called on the government to publish the plans. He added that unless the EU agrees to talk about the future trade relationship “we must make it absolutely clear we will terminate negotiations”. Increasing numbers of Tory MPs are resigned to the negotiations failing – it is worrying the government has done so little to talk publicly about its plans for no deal…

Team Hammond: Brexiters Are Stupid

Classic condescending quote from “an ally” of Philip Hammond on the front page of the Telegraph, the use of the phrase “simple-minded Brexiteers” is revealing:

“The bottom line is this is not going to be easy, something that’s overlooked by simple-minded Brexiteers like Boris. When it comes down to practicalities it may take longer.”

So anyone who doesn’t agree with Hammond and Amber Rudd that the transition must be longer than two years is a “simple-minded” Brexiter. Remember Hammond and Cabinet Remainers had until last week been living in a fantasy land of a five year transition. A senior government Leaver tells Guido in response:

“Hammond has been revealed as duplicitous and calculating and the mouthpiece of the City. He’s also been done up like a kipper by Boris and Davis. There’s a reason the PM was going to chop him.”

Of all the briefing at the moment, not sure sneering at Leavers is the best look for the Chancellor…

Rich’s Monday Morning View

Labour to Officially Ignore Brexit at Conference

Labour members will not be given a vote on the party’s Brexit policy at conference after it was decided it shouldn’t be prioritised among the eight most important topics for discussion. Big loss for Labour Remainers who hoped to get the party to vote in favour of single market membership and freedom of movement. Momentum helped the Corbynista Brexiters keep it off the agenda to save him from having the party split down the middle. Talk about papering over the cracks and making yourselves look completely irrelevant…

UPDATE: Labour Remainers who wanted to use a vote to adopt single market membership as policy are livid:

Labour Remainers lose, Corbynista Brexiters win…

“Brexit is Racist” March Kicks Off Labour Conference

Labour conference rolled into Brighton today and the town came to a standstill for an anti-Brexit, open-borders march convened by hard left group Movement for Justice by Any Means Necessary. Protesters chanted “Brexit is racist” outside the conference venue, speakers denounced the Home Office and immigration detention centers as “racist” and shouted: “open the borders”One banner read: “Communism not Corbynism, Abolish the Police, Smash the Borders”…

Anti-fascist and anarchist flags were also on display:

Welcome to Brighton…

Flint: Remainers Aren’t Being Honest About Single Market

Labour’s Caroline Flint says Labour Remainers like Clive Lewis are not being honest and that continued single market membership would not be a real Brexit. Fair play to Caroline, she is one of the few Labour MPs speaking the truth at the moment…

Profundity of the Punditry: Florence Quadruple Whammy

Robert Peston caused a bit of a stir yesterday afternoon reporting that Theresa May was about to “do a Canada”:

“Her aspiration for after those two or perhaps three years of transition is for our future trading relationship to be what is known – in the ghastly jargon – as CETA plus… What this means is we want a trade deal modelled on Canada’s new one (CETA) with the EU, that has just become operative in interim mode, and not the more intimate integration with the EU of Norway or Switzerland. The reason we are doing a Canada is there has been no resiling from the position taken by the PM in her landmark Lancaster House speech… all of that is broadly May’s position, to be expressed tomorrow.”

May actually ruled Canada out:

“One way of approaching this question is to put forward a stark and unimaginative choice between two models: either something based on European Economic Area membership; or a traditional Free Trade Agreement, such as that the EU has recently negotiated with Canada. I don’t believe either of these options would be best for the UK or for the European Union.”

Doh!

Over at the Telegraph they has this top pre-speech scoop:

Except it didn’t come true, there was no mention of this in the speech. Boris seemed happy too, rather than on the verge of resigning. Doh!

What about all those Remain pundits who said again and again that May had dropped her view that “no deal is better than a bad deal”? Asked by Laura K, May confirmed this was still her position. Doh!

Then there was Sky’s Faisal Islam, who after the speech claimed May was “65% towards the Norway model”. Nope, you can read May’s damning verdict of Norway here. Doh!

Brexit reporting not particularly enlightening at the moment…

May Rejects Norway: Boris Happy

Theresa May strongly rejected the EEA option – it will be tough for her to go with Hammond’s EEA light plan given these words:

“European Economic Area membership would mean the UK having to adopt at home – automatically and in their entirety – new EU rules. Rules over which, in future, we will have little influence and no vote. Such a loss of democratic control could not work for the British people. I fear it would inevitably lead to friction and then a damaging re-opening of the nature of our relationship in the near future: the very last thing that anyone on either side of the Channel wants.”

May also stressed the need for Britain to be able to make changes to EU rules and regulations. This is what Cabinet Leavers mean when they say they want Britain to be able to go its own way in the world:

“So the question for us now in building a new economic partnership is not how we bring our rules and regulations closer together, but what we do when one of us wants to make changes.”

Boris happy:

A senior Leaver tells Guido:

“Remainers have been outgunned. They were telling us EEA was nailed on and Spreadsheet Phil was going to get a 5 year transition.”

Boris might be happier than Hammond but May still didn’t explicitly say what Brexit Britain will look like, can kicked down the road…

UPDATE: The speech is also reopening the old Leaver splits from the referendum, with the Leave Means Leave crowd (which includes more hardline Tory Brexiter backbenchers) saying:

“We are deeply concerned that her proposals could lead to nothing changing either during or after the implementation period – which will go on for an undefined amount of time. There is no reference to being able to deregulate, sign our own trade deals or control our borders. This is a rebadging of the status quo and is Brexit in name only. In reality, this means we are still members. The Prime Minister should have explicitly committed to a no deal option and the Government should be planning for it. She has fallen for the trap laid by senior civil servants, the Treasury and the CBI.”

Ottimista* May Sounding Like Boris in Drag

May starts her speech channelling Boris “For many, it is an exciting time, full of promise. For others it is a worrying one – I look ahead with optimism”. “Optimism” the word of the day…

*Optimistic Italian

May’s Florence Speech

Italians on Board With May Speech, Call For Brussels to End “Punitive Approach”

The pre-briefing of May’s speech has gone down well with the hosts judging by the response from the Italian papers today. Centre-left broadsheet Il Messaggero says Italy should not take the “punitive approach of Macron and Merkel”:

“How should Italy respond to May who comes to our country?

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Corbynista media cheerleader Aaron Bastani says his friend Clive Lewis’s “b*tch” comment was:

“beneath any parliamentarian”

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