Three new polls over the last few days. Firstly, the regular ICM poll for the Guardian has topline figures of CON 43%(+1), LAB 40%(+1), LDEM 8%(nc). Fieldwork was over the weekend and changes are since the start of the month. There is no signficiant change from last month, but it is the fifth ICM poll in a row to show a (very small) Tory lead. The full tables are here.

The ICM poll also contained a couple of Brexit questions. By 43% to 38% people were opposed to the idea of extending the transition period beyond 2020 (as you might expect, this largely split along Remain/Leave lines). On the customs union, 35% of people wanted Britain to Leave the customs union, 24% wanted Britain to stay, 26% wanted a compromise. I suspect many respondents do not have a good idea what the Customs Union is, and that questions like this are heavily influenced by the wording. As it is, it once again splits very much down Remain/Leave lines – the reason that leaving the customs union came up ahead was because most Leavers picked it, while Remainers were more evenly split between staying and a compromise.

Secondly there was a new BMG poll for the Independent. Topline figures there were CON 39%(nc), LAB 39%(+1), LDEM 10%(-1). Fieldwork was right at the start of May, before the local elections, and changes are since mid-April. Full results are here

Finally, at the weekend there was a new online Survation poll. Fieldwork was Tues-Thurs last week and topline voting intention figures with changes from April were CON 41%(+1), LAB 40%(nc), LDEM 8%(-1). As regular poll-followers will know, Survation tend to produce figures that are more favourable to Labour than average, so while this poll too shows Labour and Conservative neck-and-neck, it’s very much in line with the trend that most other companies have shown. Essentially, Survation have gone from showing a Labour lead of around 5 points late last year, to showing the parties neck-and-neck now. Companies who were showing the parties neck-and-neck last year are now showing the Tories with a small lead. The overall leads are different, but the trend is the same. Full tabs for the Survation poll are here.

Survation also asked voting intention in a hypothetical second referendum (the only company who regularly publishes this with proper likelihood to vote) – topline figures there were Remain 50%, Leave 50%.


643 Responses to “Latest ICM, BMG and Survation polls”

1 2 3 4 5 6 13
  1. TW,

    I think you should maybe take a break for a few days.

    I’ve read your rather feverish reply to me and a others since and your comments are fast becoming Gibberish.

    Try gathering your thoughts and coming back with a coherent position and response instead of battering off whatever response you can think of off the top of your head to any challenge or question.

    You do often have valid points to make but right now your falling over yourself trying to defend ill considered positions.

    Peter.

  2. @ SAM / others – have you seen anyone who has modelled up a scenario where UK stays in the CU but leaves the SM (ie the Turkey or LAB plan)?

    The original HM Treasury models were:
    SM
    New FTA
    WTO

    NB These were the ones where they predicted an “immediate economic impact” rise in unemployment of 500,000 and a recession! The one thing they did get right was the currency – which was good news!

    The “new” HM Treasury DRAFT models made many changes to get to pretty much the same answer!?!? with by far the largest impact being from NTBs.

    However, they still only consider the 3 outcomes and use a highly dubious “remain” as the ongoing reference (EU budget draft MFF suggests rebates will be gone even if we did revoke+remain)

    I’d also point out UK is a transfer union so can chose to “help” N.East England, NI or other regions cope with whatever Brexit regional risks need “help”. N.East England especially is prime for “pork barrel” type help or perhaps Nissan letters!

    I’m always keen to break down models to see their assumptions but I haven’t seen a single one that considers a Turkey outcome. It certainly wouldn’t sort out the NTBs but it would ensure no meaningful new trade deals with new countries so IMHO it would be worse than simply taking the -ve only aspects of the WTO scenario (not that I believe the NTB assumptions that go into that, but as a comparison it would be good to see).

  3. @ PETER – I’ve been considering the merits of Leave on and off since 1992 (White Wednesday) with particular attention since the Maastricht Treaty, E.Europe expansion, attempts to rope UK in Tobin and harmonised taxes, etc.

    I understand a lot of Remain never expected UK to Leave so probably don’t know the history or the methods by which we can deal with NI or other issues. Sadly the Civil Service and May are probably amongst those Remain types although May might yet surprise me!

    If you have a specific point to discuss then please state it.

  4. SJ

    It wasn’t about picking holes, it was about making your argument more robust.

    But still the question how many derivatives equal a tonnes of mushrooms is the relevant one (although a little tricky to answer), perhaps there needs to be a mushrooms futures market?

  5. Trevor Warne,
    “UK will be a “rule taker” on global rules (standards and regulations) where it makes sense to continue with those global rules.”

    That would be all of them, then. So how is that any kind of freedom?

    The advantage of being a member of the EU is we have a big influence it what the EU chooses to do, and it has clout to change world rules. The UK alone will have virtually none.

    “How much ‘control’ did we have on influencing the ECJ’s decisions”

    Quite a lot actually. Apart from appointing our share of judges, EU commissioners and MEPs, we also had a big say in writing the laws which the ECJ enforces. If we leave the EU, of course none of that applies.

    Somerjohn,
    “It’s a lot easier to paint a positive economic path forward for Ireland than for its big neighbour to the east.”

    Plus brexit has already brought reunification closer, for those that care about that. A nice littel territorial gain on the cards too.

    “The establishing of new direct ferry links from Ireland to France and Spain was discussed here recently, with savings of €1200 per trip compared with using the UK landbridge,”

    Bit of a no brainer to avoid the Uk then. Bad news for anyone in the Uk who had got a cut of that, from cafe owners to pothole menders. Does this threaten the established communications links from UK to N. ireland, making the position of the north more precarious too?

  6. Colin: I think your choice of a tiny sector under manifest threat already from Brexit was in order to downplay, by caricature, the significance of the whole Irish Agri Sector to the Irish Economy . Your view that it is “not where ( their) future lies” seems both presumptious & uninformed.

    You are so literal-minded!

    Without giving too much away, part of my background is in journalism, and specifically, conveying reasonably complex information in a readable, comprehensible way. Using vivid, or at least commonplace, imagery, is a useful part of the toolbox. That may involve a trade-off between readability and complete precision, but it’s better (in my judgement) to give someone a good idea of the point under discussion, than to lose them completely halfway through an explanation.

    So: Irish mushroom farmers have already been hard hit by brexit effects, because they are in a low margin, price-driven commodity market and largely reliant on the UK market, where the £’s depreciation has dealt them a 15% price hit.

    Others in the Irish agro and food industries are also vulnerable, but further down the line and depending on what deal is struck. They also have more flexibility to realign to other EU markets, because if new UK/EU barriers arise, that will give Irish producers an advantage over UK ones in EU markets. So, for instance, the UK cheddar sold in Spanish supermarkets could be replaced by Irish. Ditto beef, prepared meals etc. And direct ferry links will facilitate that: all those chiller trucks bringing fresh fruit and veg can go back stuffed with cheese, yogurt, burgers etc.

    As to my being presumptuous in saying that Ireland’s future doesn’t lie in agriculture: just look at the precipitous decline in agriculture’s share of Irish gdp. Are you saying it’s presumptuous to expect that trend to continue?

    As wiki has it:

    The economy shifted from an agriculture to a knowledge economy, focusing on services and high-tech industries. Economic growth averaged 10% from 1995 to 2000, and 7% from 2001 to 2004. Industry, which accounts for 46% of GDP and about 80% of exports, has replaced agriculture as the country’s leading sector.

  7. @Trevor Warne – “If you have a specific point to discuss then please state it.”

    If you are unable to understand @Peter Cairn’s quite specific point, then you really should take his advice.

  8. Interesting YouGov poll for the Brexit disputants:

    Which of the following comes closest to your view on how well Brexit is going?

    I expected Brexit to go well and it is going well so far 9%
    I expected Brexit to go well and it isn’t 28%
    I expected Brexit to go badly but it’s going well so far 5%
    I expected Brexit to go badly and it is 39%

    The rest don’t know or don’t care.

    Whatever the rights and wrongs of the argument, this is fairly devastating for the government

  9. https://www.rte.ie/news/business/2018/0515/963650-thomson-reuters-dublin/

    Big banks and trading platforms compete on speed when trading forex and invest heavily in cutting edge technology in London.

    While trading platforms – or even some of the dealers themselves – head elsewhere after Brexit most of the hardware is likely to remain in London because of the high-speed sub-Atlantic cables linking it to New York.

    Bloomberg, MarketAxess and Nex Group have chosen Amsterdam as their EU hub for their trading units, media have reported. ….

    …..Martin Shanahan, CEO IDA Ireland said, said that Thomson Reuters’ choice of Ireland is very significant in terms of the country’s ability to attract top international brands that have influence and reach.

    “This provides IDA Ireland with another powerful calling card for new types of business within International Financial Services and points to Ireland’s attractiveness to international financial services business,” the IDA CEO said.

    “Ireland has the right mix of regulation, skills, experience and office space to make us a very logical place for financial services to locate. Our track record, pro-business environment, highly skilled talented workforce and an unwavering commitment to the European single market continues to appeal to investors,” he added.

    Meanwhile, legal giant DLA Piper also said today it plans to open an office in Dublin to capitalise on an expected increase in the number of financial services institutions in the city after Brexit.

    UK law firms are looking to cater to an expected movement of their clients to Ireland and to develop a base in an English speaking country that will remain in the European Union after the UK’s exit.

    Other law firms to open bases in Dublin since the Brexit vote include Pinsent Masons, Simmons & Simmons and Lewis Silkin and US firm Covington & Burling.”

  10. Trevor W

    Trevor, the piece by Wren-Lewis to which I linked says that the UK will remain in the CU and SM. Here it is again.

    “As soon as the EU decided, quite rightly, to support Ireland in rejecting any deal that resulted in placing infrastructure at the Irish border, the idea of a Free Trade Agreement between the EU and the UK was dead. It became inevitable that the UK would stay in the Customs Union (CU) and the Single Market (SM). The two possible alternatives, which is that the UK would go ahead and impose a hard border and forsake any deal with the EU, or that a border would be created in the Irish Sea, would not be approved by a majority in parliament. If the UK had a strong bargaining position, it could perhaps persuade the EU to compromise over how much of the Single Market it needed to be part of (the Jersey option), but according to Sam Lowe who gave that option its name the “EU will not contemplate the backstop applying to the whole UK”. The UK gave up any bargaining strength it had when it triggered Article 50.”

  11. @ DANNY – Let’s just disagree on the value of UK’s voice before Jun’16 either in making the rules or influencing the ECJ’s judgements and stick with who makes the “rules” and hence who is the “rule maker” and why UK was/is and should be a “rule taker” in many (but not all) cases.

    The “rule maker” for post Brexit might be global, EU or national – we can still make some ourselves even in the EU! The important thing is to minimise NTBs for exporters by staying aligned to the most appropriate rules made by the relevant rule maker on a sector by sector basis. The EU won’t allow sector based cherry picking but that does not stop UK choosing to recognise/adopt/align with global rules or in some specific cases an EU variant. In other cases we can make our own rules (looks like Gove keen to do so on agri-food) and/or ensure we at least meet the minimum accepted and mutually recognised rules of trading partners.

    NB This is specific to trade in goods as we’re talking about the merits (or not!) of staying in the CU. If we move away from this relatively small part of UK economy then we’re into services, etc and domestic UK-UK trade which are both much bigger and require a different approach to “rules”. NTBs exist in services but they are not customs checks and the such like and IMHO the UK, being #1 on financial services would have a much stronger voice on its own rather than sat behind the EU who are going down a very isolationist and protectionist route. I’d better not explain in detail though otherwise I’ll be accused of changing the subject or writing a long post :)

    @ ALEC / PETER – OK here is a coherent position:
    “..continue to believe that no deal is better than a bad deal..” and
    “we will no longer be members of the Single Market or Customs Union..”

    both on p.36 of CON manifesto. See also p15 and p35 for more info specific to leaving the EU.
    https://www.conservatives.com/manifesto

    If you want it even simpler then:

    “Brexit means Brexit”

    See the result of EURef and the HoC vote to trigger A50 (note the HoC vote, as demanded by GM, was after Lancaster House and Brexit White Paper)

  12. SOMERJOHN

    @”You are so literal-minded!”

    I find that here on UKPR people generally like to be as precise as possible-if only because readers are poised & ready to correct you if you get it wrong.

    So I tend to assume that contributors mean what they write. Though I have not had to consider “journalistic licence” before. Thank you for alerting me to your professional attachment to that mode.

    Recent trends in the Irish Agri sector have been the opposite of decline:-

    https://tradingeconomics.com/ireland/gdp-from-agriculture

    ( see 10 Year-Columnar )

    I remain of the view , following the analyses I have read, that Ireland’s economy is especially vulnerable to the effects of tax rates on the drivers of its recent growth in the Celtic Tiger Phase.

    That phase of growth has gone now bequeathing a legacy of Sovereign Debt to the country , but the reliance on “Competitive” Taxation continues. Right now it exists in a climate of EU Tax harmonisation discussion & recent US multi-national Taxation reform .

    I have no doubt that Varadkar understands the leveraged effect on his Public Finances if Brexit produces adverse economic effects on top of those vulnerabilities.

  13. Enjoyed Andrew Neil as usual today on DP.

    He absolutely dismembered the female Foreign Office Minister on Brexit progress & Timetable .

    Like him I no longer understand how it is all going to happen in time. I’m not convinced she did either .

  14. Well.

    It’s now clear that the month long “anti-Semite” accusations aimed at Corbyn and the Labour Party had another purpose to just undermining Corbyn. It was to head off criticism of Israel as the US embassy prepared to open in Jerusalem and Israel prepared to crush the inevitable protests.

    I was brought up to be pro-Israel and pro the right of Israel to exist but murder is murder and shooting protesters loses my support.

    Where’s Chukka’s condemnation? John Mann’s?

    They really are a disloyal, dreadful shower of hypocrites.

  15. Colin: So I tend to assume that contributors mean what they write.

    So, for you, a cliff-edge brexit involves a leap from Beachy Head? A guillotine motion in HoC involves decapitation? Hitting the nail on the head is something to do with carpentry?

    If so, you really are extraordinarily literal-minded.

    But I think it’s more likely that, like most people, you’re perfectly capable of using and understanding metaphors and other imagery.

    BTW, if you want to live by your own precepts, you might consider that your ” Though I have not had to consider “journalistic licence” before” suggests, if taken literally, that you have never had to think about the concept before, in your entire life. Also, by using quotation marks around “journalistic licence” you suggest that that’s my description of what I use. It’s your phrase, not mine, and is a misrepresentation of what I wrote.

  16. @ SAM – Neither main party wants to stay in the SM (May wants to drop FoM and Corbyn wants to be a “rule maker”). I was replying to your regional numbers specifically NI and N.East England Br-armeggedon to see if you knew anyone who had looked at the economic impact of ‘Turkey’ (or LAB) outcome. The “new” draft HMTreasury model predictions to which you referred come from here:
    https://www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-committees/Exiting-the-European-Union/17-19/Cross-Whitehall-briefing/EU-Exit-Analysis-Cross-Whitehall-Briefing.pdf

    The focus is rightly all on NTBs and the “rules” aspects. For “customs” p18 models these as being 1% in every scenario so as a comparison it can be excluded. Also worth noting that 1% decompounded over 15years is, well, not a lot, well within MoE shall we say!

    I’m aware that Remainers have a 3act play they think is some kind of cunning plan and are using NI as the lever to achieve their “coup de grace”. The risk in that is that the EU decide to stop the play after act1 (UK stuck in CU) or act2 (UK stuck in CU+SM). The smarter Remain MPs (e.g. Morgan) are now trying to get act1 rewritten to be SM instead of CU but they still hope to achieve all 3acts before the curtain comes down.

    I fully agree that in EU (and hence RoI) view the only solution to NI is SM+CU (aka BINO).

    I had thought May might try to procrastinate all the way to 29June and have EU give her a stark BINO v no deal choice but we are now promised a White Paper with specific info. Either the paper:
    1/ Adopts MaxFac and admits the need for some modest flexibility from EU along with a slight hardening of the NI border and an update to GFA (ie breaks one red line) or
    2/ Caves in, breaks manifesto promises and risks a very likely leadership challenge.
    3/ Tries some new version of fudge

    IMHO the DUP would go along with 1 but not 2. No idea about 3 – I think the time for fudge has run out but I thought that back in Oct! Transition bought some time but it does look like the EU are getting twitchy and May’s ability to fob off parliament can’t run for another 6.5 weeks!

  17. For those that don’t know the Irish SARP scheme:
    https://www.revenue.ie/en/personal-tax-credits-reliefs-and-exemptions/income-and-employment/special-assignee-relief-programme/index.aspx

    Not hard to see the appeal or understand why that isn’t mentioned by the corporate PR folks!

  18. I think there is an aspect of Trevor’s argument that is being neglected a bit..

    In part, Trevor is contrasting being a member of the ECJ, with bilateral treaties.

    With the ECJ, although there is influence, it is diluted among many nations Whereas in a bilateral treaty, the influence could be more like fifty-fifty.

    This breaks down however, if the other party has more clout, e.g. the U.S.

    Thus we might do better negotiating deals with smaller nations. Problem is that their economies are smaller, and smaller nations knowing their weak position might over time band together into bigger trading blocks.

    Then we have to join a bigger trading block…

  19. TREVOR WARNE

    Thanks for the link to the SARP scheme.

    I can see why the Troika et al are urging RoI to broaden their tax base !

  20. @TW

    1/ Adopts MaxFac and admits the need for some modest flexibility from EU along with a slight hardening of the NI border and an update to GFA (ie breaks one red line)

    I worry that any hardening of the border will be politically unacceptable in RoI and the EU negotiators will have no room for manoeuvre. Although the economic consequences of a hard Brexit will be bad for RoI, the political consequences of a hard(er) border would be worse. And a return of the “Armed struggle” would be economically worse in the long term.

    For these reasons I really believe that the hard-line Brexiters (Rees-Mogg et al) are in for a really unpleasant surprise, the Irish Government are not just grandstanding, nor are they the puppets of the EU – they are the driving force behind the EU negotiators inflexibility.

    Going to NI and talking to some Unionist as RM did, will give you no idea of the visceral hatred many republicans have for the border and what it represents.

  21. Carfrew: and smaller nations knowing their weak position might over time band together into bigger trading blocks.

    Indeed. One of TW’s favourite (or at least, most often cited) potential trade deals is a beef-for-services deal with Brazil. But as he acknowledges, that has to be a deal with Mercosur, which includes our old friend Argentina. Historical baggage apart, it looks a bit dodgy as a great-white-hope trade prospect, what with last week’s interest hike rate to 40%, its 25% inflation, massive devaluation and looming debt repayment crisis. (Interestingly, I seem to remember Argentina being touted not long ago as an example of how Greece could have saved itself all that hassle, if only it had been free to do an Argentina).

  22. @Sam

    Thanks for the link. You couldn’t make it up!

    Of course, there are those on UKPR who like to portray this process as the EU’s imperialistic eastern land-grab. Quite why the UK should be so keen to aid and abet this process is less eagerly discussed.

    I particularly liked the last paragraph:

    Britain’s attitude to other countries joining the European Union appears unchanged since its own decision to leave. In September 2016 Mr Johnson, who campaigned to leave the EU, confirmed Britain would still push for Turkey to join the block – even though Mr Johnson’s Vote Leave campaign played on the spectre of Turkish accession to drive the Leave vote. Turkey has technically been a candidate since 1999 but talks have all but ground to a halt.

  23. COLIN

    Surely you cannot be surprised by this. The incompetence of this Govt has been there for all to see from day one.

  24. Trevor W

    Here are extracts from a long post by Tony Connolly of RTE explaining why the Irish and EU began to apply pressure. What room for movement do you think the UK has? Crash out?

    https://www.rte.ie/news/analysis-and-comment/2017/1117/920981-long-read-brexit/

    “Throughout the summer, with each round of Brexit negotiations, both Michel Barnier and David Davis spoke of a prolonged “mapping” exercise being coordinated between officials on both the EU and the British side.

    The mapping was essentially a detailed examination of all those areas of North-South co-operation, as provided for by the Good Friday Agreement, which were underpinned by mutual EU membership by Ireland and the UK, and which would therefore be adversely affected by Brexit.

    All that mapping was highly detailed and technical. In time, officials quantified the level of EU-relevant areas of North-South cooperation. It came to 142 areas.

    “The deeper you go,” says one EU source familiar with the mapping exercise, “the more examples there are, more areas where you find out that actually a lot of the Good Friday Agreement requirements are more implicit than anything else. They rest on the status quo, and that status quo involves membership of the EU single market.”

    One example is cross-border health. It requires equality of patient rights, but also things like single standards for medical devices, the approval of medicines at EU level, mutual recognition of medical qualifications, mutual acceptance of cross border ambulance activity.

    In other words, taken altogether, in order for the EU and UK to protect the Good Friday Agreement, and meaningful North-South Cooperation, and the all-island economy, there cannot be any “regulatory divergence” from the rules governing the single market and the customs union.

    Therefore, to avoid a hard border, both sides of the island would have to maintain the same rules as codified in the EU customs union, and the single market.”

  25. Somerjohn

    It would take a heart of stone not to laugh.

    I have a post in moderation. I tried, using the article itself, to precis a long post by Tony Connolly of RTE. He writes about the process of the hardening of attitude by Ireland and the EU to the UK tactic of refusing to engage with what the UK wishes to do. In essence it is the EU involvement in the GFA that will lead to BINO, if that is what happens. Here is the link.

    https://www.rte.ie/news/analysis-and-comment/2017/1117/920981-long-read-brexit/

  26. The thing about Brexit is – I don’t think the reason that it’s going badly is because of government incompetence (though there is certainly plenty of that to go round). It’s going badly because Brexit is an impossible challenge, laid down by fanatical cultists to harness the immense power of their non-existent three-headed unicorn.

    Still, it seems that at least Brexiters are beginning to move in the right direction. Hopefully this is another step on the path from them blaming remain voters, to blaming the government, to finally blaming the Brexit decision itself.

  27. The Irish position is that they are demanding their absolutely ideal solution for the border in a way that is perfect for the EU, with “no deal” as the alternative.

    However, for Ireland “no deal” is actually their absolute worst case scenario for the border and everything else. (In the rest of the EU, “no deal” is perfectly acceptable, and quite possibly a close second to not leaving or Brexit in Name Only.)

    I expect that if it were to come to that the Irish government will turn to the EU and say, “But you promised us that would not happen.”

    However, they are so certain we will throw our hand in that they are rather committed to this piece of brinkmanship.

  28. @SJ

    “Indeed. One of TW’s favourite (or at least, most often cited) potential trade deals is a beef-for-services deal with Brazil.”

    ——

    Yes, and his trade remedies seem a bit light on synths, or hifi. People keep talking about agriculture and “services”, not proper stuff like geeky tech.

    It seems that ultimately, things might boil down to this.

    That in a world where more are in trade blocks, the rest are forced to join trade blocks to survive.

    Which might not bother some Brexiters, excepting if those trade blocks tend to involve free movement.

    Thus, whether Brexit really achieves its ambitions rather hinges on the extent to which other nations join these trade blocks, with free movement. The more that do so, the more pressure in us to do likewise.

    If we suppose that the EU federalist project is doomed, for the sake of argument, that doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t default to single market and free movement, and that other trade zones won’t follow suit.

  29. @Sam

    That’s a fascinating read, especially with the benefit of hindsight.

    I’m struck by the way in which Ireland’s stature and negotiating muscle are enormously enhanced by the supportive strength of EU27. Collectively, they know what they want and how to get it. The UK position just seems embarrassingly dithery and unfocussed. On this showing, you have to worry about the UK’s ability to manage on its own in that tough old world out there.

  30. Polltroll

    Of course the brexiteers could equally say your comments are typical of remain fanatics who can’t or refuse to face the future without the imaginary comfort blanket of the EU.
    And of course the brexiteers could also hope that the remainers would be on the path of stop blaming brexiteers who voted out ,stop blaming the government and excepting that brexit is going to happen.

  31. JOSEPH1832

    I think the positions of the Irish and EU have evolved.

    https://www.rte.ie/news/analysis-and-comment/2017/1117/920981-long-read-brexit/

    “The deeper you go,” says one EU source familiar with the mapping exercise, “the more examples there are, more areas where you find out that actually a lot of the Good Friday Agreement requirements are more implicit than anything else. They rest on the status quo, and that status quo involves membership of the EU single market.”

    One example is cross-border health.

    Look closely, and you can see where the single market is essential to its functioning.

    It requires equality of patient rights, but also things like single standards for medical devices, the approval of medicines at EU level, mutual recognition of medical qualifications, mutual acceptance of cross border ambulance activity.”

  32. It seems the asparagus farmer supplying the royal wedding is in despair at the effect of brexit on his business:

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/may/16/from-royal-table-to-empty-fields-asparagus-farmer-faces-bust-over-brexit

    Any brexiteer want to have a go a putting a positive spin on this? I suppose he could plough up his asparagus, sow wheat and buy a big combine. Then at the next royal knees-up they can eat bread instead.

  33. Somerjohn

    “dithery and unfocussed” does not do the UK government justice.

    It sent off Article 50 without preparation. Mrs May immediately boxed herself in without a credible retreat. No preparations for Brexit in advance of the referendum were done.

    “Wherever May looks, danger lurks. She cannot present necessary trade and customs bills because she fears, correctly, her moderate backbenchers will defy her. She cannot plead for rationality as her Brexit zealots will defenestrate her. The House of Lords, meanwhile, has shown its teeth. To the fury of those who demanded Brexit in order to boost parliamentary sovereignty, peers have performed their constitutional function by holding the government to account and rigorously amending the withdrawal bill. The new legal demand for no hard border in Ireland is significant; the instruction to remain in the single market is explosive. May now faces fresh unwanted battles to prevent the spread of rebellion in the Commons.”

    https://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/politics/like-a-jenga-tower-brexits-collapse-is-a-question-of-when-not-if

  34. @Colin

    “Enjoyed Andrew Neil as usual today on DP.
    He absolutely dismembered the female Foreign Office Minister on Brexit progress & Timetable .
    Like him I no longer understand how it is all going to happen in time. I’m not convinced she did either .”

    Schadenfreude?

    IMHO Labour party should say that we have tried long enough. It Is obvious that negotiations are going nowhere and it’s time to call the whole thing off, IMHO they won’t/

  35. Turk: actually I’m not a remain fanatic, and I accept that Brexit is going to happen. We have no choice in the matter, and to be honest centrist dads like me have had our way for far too long in this country and it is probably fair that other people, who for a long time felt unrepresented by mainstream British politics, are getting their voices heard.

    Just don’t say we didn’t warn you!

  36. I’ve had a look at the EFTA treaty, and it seems joining is really quite simple! It is done by the unanimous agreement of the EFTA council, at which each of the four EFTA states (Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Leichtenstein) has one vote. And that’s it.

    So the formalities could be done at the last minute. Of course conditions would have to be negotiated first, but I’m sure that could be done quietly in advance by a few officials, just in case.

    The bonus to joining EFTA next March would be retaining membership of the EEA. This is because membership of the EEA is contingent on membership of either the EU or EFTA.

    The government did not give the required one year’s noticed to leave the EEA, saying we didn’t need to as leaving it would be automatic. But (maybe no-one noticed at the time) this was also a cunning ploy to retain the option of staying in it. All the UK needs to do is join EFTA.

  37. As often happens, Wings has commissioned a rather unusual Panelbase poll of “English” people, not just those who were born or reside there, but who satisfy both criteria.

    The first question reported relates to Leveson –

    https://wingsoverscotland.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/engpapers.jpg

    Corrections in newspapers should be printed at same size and prominence as original story

    Agree 78% : Disagree 5%

  38. @Hal So were running out of time No sign of any of those compensatory trade deals with far flung places, A bespoke deal with the EU would take more time than we’ve got, Looks like your EFTA option is all that stands between us and the bottom of the WTO cliff,

  39. I feel I’m watching a house of cards, and someone’s opened the window, and a strong breeze is starting to blow.

    It’s all going to end in tears, and almighty national humiliation, isn’t it?

  40. SJ

    I suspect some will feel angry and humiliated
    Some will pretty much take years to stop laughing
    And the vast majority will be asking the rest to explain what exactly happened

  41. Polltroll

    I’m with the philosopher George Santayana who describes fanaticism as “redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim”. The fanatic displays very strict standards with little tolerance for contrary ideas or opinions.
    That seems to describe the level of posts on this site regarding brexit, two entrenched views both convinced they are right and are willing to go to the Enth degree to prove there right usually in the most obscure and tedious way possible.

  42. @Turk All very true no doubt. But it doesn’t alter the fact that the UK does not have a clear and credible negotiating position and we are running out of time.

  43. @Somerjohn

    Re: “spin”

    How about “UK abolishes thousands of cr*ap jobs on appalling wages and conditions that noone in the UK wants anyway”.

  44. [email protected]: It would take a heart of stone not to laugh.

    I have a post in moderation. I tried, using the article itself, to precis a long post by Tony Connolly of RTE. He writes about the process of the hardening of attitude by Ireland and the EU to the UK tactic of refusing to engage with what the UK wishes to do. In essence it is the EU involvement in the GFA that will lead to BINO, if that is what happens. Here is the link.

    https://www.rte.ie/news/analysis-and-comment/2017/1117/920981-long-read-brexit/

    The link predates the phase 1 agreement, but it still seems to be reflective of where things are now.

    As has often been stated, neither the EU or the UK want a hard border between North and South. But from the EU’s perspective it means that the North at least must be in the SM and CU. The UK merely has to choose whether the mainland is in the same arrangement.

    Now the question is how the UK would play this choice – so far, it is saying no internal borders within the UK, but no SM and CU either. Which would lead the EU to say ‘no deal’.

    Now if the EU say ‘no deal’, then the EU are likely to be the ones who put up the hard border. And it seems to me that the UK miscalculation here is that the EU would not want to be seen to do this. My question is if the EU are the ones to put up a hard border, who will cop the blame? In England, for sure, it would be painted as the intransigent EU. But I wonder about Ireland and I think that the RoI would accept it as would Northern nationalists and republicans – in the sense that they would not blame the EU or the RoI – they would hold the British responsible.

    Perhaps May is on to this to some extent when she told Reesmogg that she was not so sure about a border poll being ‘winnable’ from a UK pov [thus inadvertently(?) to some extent. conceding the grounds for a poll].

    If the British are held responsible, the GFA provides the mechanism to get rid of the British and the hard border with a single swipe of a border poll. I don’t think that RoI/EU border infrastructure is likely to be targetted by republicans, [although British infrastructure might be]. Are nationalists and republicans just settling in for a sort of siege which will end with a border poll?

    I have no time for Corbyn on brexit. It is dereliction of the duty of opposition to let the government get away with the current shambles. But I am wondering whether he and his office are thinking along these lines as a way of making the tories not only own brexit but also stumble into uniting Ireland.

  45. Trevor Warne,
    ” Let’s just disagree on the value of UK’s voice before Jun’16″

    Lets not. Lets argue it out. As things stand the Uk is a big fish in a small pool, which means we get our way more often than not. This then gets multiplied by the full weight of the EU under our direction when addressing world affairs.

    We can not expect anything like the influence outside the EU.

    ” The important thing is to minimise NTBs for exporters”

    No, it isnt. The important thing is for the Uk to continue to trade in a walled garden. Where we compete on equal terms and so stand a chance of doing so. We cannot compete with any developing country on labour costs, and multinational companies will happily build a factory there for them, if we dismantle our NTB and let them sell to us here. No one is going to dismantle their NTB so we can sell to them unless we do the same, and then the trade will go the wrong way for us. Leaving the EU is a recipe for disasetr for Uk trade.

    “The EU won’t allow sector based cherry picking”
    And nor will anyone else.

    “Neither main party wants to stay in the SM ”
    I wouldnt bet on that one either. They simply have a position as things currently stand. Once we are back in the CU, then we can debate and agree staying in the SM. Both are necessary for an open irish border.

    ” Remainers have a 3act play they think is some kind of cunning plan and are using NI as the lever to achieve their “coup de grace”

    No. This play is a tory creation, from unnecessary elction to coalition with a party which requires an open border. So more accurate to call it the leave plan for remaining in the EU.

    Somerjohn,
    well I got it.

  46. More from the Wings poll of English born, English residents –

    How would you vote in another EU referendum?

    Leave 50% : Remain 47%

  47. Belgian court throws out the Spanish attempt to apply the EAW to 3 Catalan politicians.

    Hopefully, the Scottish and German courts will do the same.

1 2 3 4 5 6 13