Following Theresa May’s second failure to secure her negotiated Withdrawal Agreement through the House of Commons, by another massive vote, the question arises – who will hold the no-deal option, feared both by a majority in the House of Commons and by the European Union (EU)? The answer may surprise you.
In spite of Theresa May asserting initially that no-deal is better than a bad deal, she has changed her mind and she will seek the support of the House of Commons tomorrow to avoid what is pejoratively called ‘a no-deal Brexit’. This is a serious mistake.
The House of Commons vote is unable to take no-deal off the table; it simply remains on the EU’s table. If the House of Commons rejects the no-deal option, the EU will use its version of no-deal fear to force a long extension to Article 50. ‘Project Fear’ continues.
The EU has a no-deal option
The effect of the UK ruling out a no-deal option will be to put the no-deal option into the hands of the EU. Initial reaction from the EU to today’s vote in the House of Commons is that the EU will refuse a short extension to Article 50, which would result in a no-deal Brexit because the default position is Brexit on 29 March 2019. This puts the fear of no-deal into the EU’s court. The EU will use the fear of no-deal to force a long extension to leaving the EU, during which time Remainers will hope and try to reverse the Referendum vote and remain in the EU.
Tomorrow’s House of Commons vote may hand over the fear of no-deal to the EU to use as it pleases. It is essential for the House of Commons to retain the option of no-deal for itself.
The Brexit timeline is here:
19 Mar 2019: EU negotiator Michel Barnier is now using the no-deal option now that the UK has abandoned it. He said: “Voting against no-deal does not prevent it from happening.” A ComRes survey for The Daily Telegraph found that nearly half of the British public is confident that the UK will ultimately thrive if it leaves the EU without a deal. True to type, the 10 p.m. BBC news and BBC Newnight missed out Barnier’s comment on no-deal in its clip of Barnier’s speech. The BBC Europe editor Katya Adler reported: “They (EU leaders) want to avoid a no-deal Brexit.” Possibly, but it shows that the EU will use no-deal in their negotiations whereas the UK has abandoned its use. Again, the EU is portrayed as the saviour – the possible Summit on 28th March was described by Adlar as “the moment that the European Union took action to prevent a no-deal Brexit”. At least it shows who is in control in these negotiations.
20 Mar 2019: No-deal is No Big Deal: no-deal is still on the EU table, but this is no big deal! No-deal is better than Brexit delay and some are now saying that a deal based on WTO rules may be the best option on offer. At Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) Theresa May said “I am not prepared to delay Brexit any further than 30 June“. 7:00 p.m. Michel Barnier has used the no-deal option to try to force the House of Commons to accept the Withdrawal Agreement or to vote to stop Brexit in its tracks by voting down Article 50 before 29 Mar 2019. Some say that the long extension is still possible. A Sky poll shows that 90% of the British public feel humiliated by the Brexit talks. Both the Withdrawal Agreement and Parliamentary debate in the House of Commons have failed the nation. 8:30 p.m. Prime Minister Theresa May addressed the nation and blamed Parliamentarians for the Brexit impasse and appealed over their head to ‘the people’ – “you the public have had enough … I am on your side.” 11 p.m. Before the day was over, the BBC posted another tendentious story: “Brexit: Sterling falls on no-deal worries“. The uninitiated may take fright at this. We were solemnly informed that the Prime Minister’s statements at PMQs “spooked currency traders and the pound, which has risen recently, fell about 1% against the euro and dollar.” This is a meaningless statement, written tendentiously along the well-known BBC ‘despite Brexit’ or ‘because of Brexit’ genre. Yes, the pound goes up and down, as do all markets, and for every loser there are winners. The US dollar fell about 1% against the Swiss franc at the same time as the pound fell, continuing its current fall. So? Was that Brexit? No, it is profiteering by market traders capitalising upon news. Traders are not the only ones to capitalise from markets; news media capitalise on the public’s ignorance of markets to scare the public with Project Fear. As for the pound against the dollar, it went down about 1% in the morning session after May’s PMQs and recovered after Barnier’s statement. Such news reports do not serve the public well and only mislead it. One is better served with Christian media.
29 Mar 2019: The EU continues to use the no-deal threat after the UK handed it over to them. 11 p.m. This was “the Brexit moment”, postponed by UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s servile request to the EU. This ‘no-Brexit moment’ arrived and passed without a whimper.
5 Aug 2019: The EU continues to use the no-deal card. The EU has faced up to a Brexit without a deal, but UK Remainer MPs have not.
9 Aug 2019: the UK being free to make our own trade deals is of the essence of Brexit and the future trade deal with the US Trade Representative (USTR) will require freedom rather than hindrance from the EU. Stephen Vaughn, speaking in his first broadcast interview since leaving the Office of the US Trade Representative, said that the UK has “an enormous amount of leverage, and we’ll see how you use it.”