Friday 29 June
The EU continues to wallow in a mess of its own making, putting Brexit on the backburner while it attempts to deal with the re-emerging migrant crisis caused by the likes of Angela Merkel. Europhiles must be feeling the heat from the south, where Italy’s new populist government continues to demand renewed efforts to control Europe’s external borders – read our dissection of the farce here.
But while little has been achieved in Brussels on the topic of Brexit, with today’s European Council conclusions giving a serious sense of déjà vu, there is movement at home with Theresa May creating an opening for yet another Remainer coup after appearing to quash one just last week in the convoluted EU Withdrawal Bill saga.
She’s decided to dump her Brexit war cabinet – where patriotic Brexiteers are evenly matched against sore loser Remoaners – in favour of a full cabinet meeting at Chequers, where she hopes to settle once and for all the UK’s customs position. After seeing her phony “customs partnership” deal hammered time and time again, she hopes to revive the crummy idea in a more receptive setting. With Olly Robbins seemingly steering the ship – an Irish minister was quoted this week referring to nominal Brexit chief David Davis as “the teaboy” – it’s no wonder that May can’t seem to let go of her nutty proposal.
Brexit businesses strike back
The media had a field day this week following a small number of threats from the likes of Airbus, which may give succour to the Remainer faction. But the threats have subsequently been exposed as the politically motivated attacks they are, as evidence surfaces that chancellor Philip Hammond and business secretary Greg Clark are behind the shameful interventions. It says a lot about the sorry state of the Remainer cabal that these two senior ministers are telling firms to talk down Britain.
It’s worth looking behind the curtain to see how shallow these attacks are. Businessman Johan Eliasch put in a powerful performance on Question Time this Thursday where he revealed the flimsy logic of the threats: “you do not move a factory over a 3% tariff,” he said. Jeremy Good, director at Cryogenic Ltd, did the nation a similar service in the Financial Times where he ran the numbers and determined that a No Deal Brexit would only cost his firm 0.04% of annual turnover.
And if you’re still in doubt about Britain’s enterprising spirit, just look at some other success stories this week. BAE Systems has won a huge £20bn contract to build frigates for the Australian navy on the back of British expertise, and Jaguar Land Rover has announced its own £20bn investment in Britain with plans to build their new electric i-Pace in Wolverhampton.
Perhaps Remainers should be concerned about the electoral consequences of trying to derail the will of the British people, while all of the evidence continues to show a bright future for an independent Britain. Things aren’t looking good for Anna Soubry in Broxtowe, where local Tory members have been polled on her performance. 80% gave her a big thumbs down, and the threat of deselection looms large. What a shame…
A historic week
But while Remainers continue to collude with big foreign businesses to sow fear, we have enjoyed a historic week on our road to national independence. The EU Withdrawal Bill was signed into law by Queen Elizabeth II, marking a major milestone.
We’ve also seen a little bit more courage from the British state as preparations for a No Deal Brexit seem to be ramping up. The National Audit Office has given their stamp of approval for HMRC No Deal preparations, noting that it has “made progress in developing its contingency plans, and has reduced the risk of not having an operation system in place next March”. Europhiles have been bleating on about the dangers of a No Deal scenario for months, claiming that it would be impossible for Britain to handle new customs requirements – but HMRC seem to be getting on with the job.
Britain prepares for No Deal
Even Theresa the appeaser seemed to grow a little backbone with a stern warning to European leaders about security cooperation, telling them to worry more about “the safety of your citizens”. EU officials have tried to use the issue as a wedge during negotiations, and have gotten away with it thus far despite being utterly dependent on British security capabilities.
We’ve been calling on the prime minister to leverage Britain’s strengths for months, instead of caving into every Brussels demand, and she finally seems to be doing it. Whether this is an anomaly or the signs of a new, rational approach to talks remains to be seen – time will tell.
Perhaps for her next trick, she should study how deeply dependent the German car industry is on Britain. 1 in 6 German cars are exported to the UK, more than in all of Asia combined, with 768,896 exported last year alone. Yet another intimidating card to play in negotiations, time for May to recognise it.