Today, March 30th 2019, was supposed to have been the United Kingdom’s first full day as an independent sovereign country since December 31st 1972. Unfortunately the British Establishment, very much including Theresa May, has colluded with the European Union to prevent this. However, there is everything is to play for. Complete British freedom is less than two weeks away, if Conservative and DUP MPs act intelligently and with determination. This blog explains clearly what the MPs must do now to achieve this.
What Conservative and DUP MPs must do
Conservative and DUP MPs must give the following instructions to Theresa May:
- The British government must advise the President of the E.U. Council (Donald Tusk) in writing that the United Kingdom rejects the draft Withdrawal Agreement that was provisionally agreed by the Prime Minister in November 2018, and that consequently the United Kingdom shall leave the E.U. at 11:00PM British Time on 12th April 2019, without any Withdrawal Agreement.
- Theresa May must advise, in writing, Her Majesty the Queen and the Chairman of the Conservative & Unionist Party (Brandon Lewis) that she is resigning from the leadership of the Conservative and Unionist Party with effect on 12th April 2019 at 11:00PM.
To ensure that the above instructions are fully complied with, all Conservative and DUP MPs must sign the following public proclamation:
- That they swear by Almighty God that they will vote again and again against the draft Withdrawal Agreement that has already been rejected three times in a row by the House of Commons, by clear and overwhelming majorities. That they will never vote in favour of the draft Withdrawal Agreement.
- That they swear by Almighty God that they will instantly lay before the House of Commons a motion of no-confidence in Theresa May’s government if any attempt is made to ask the E.U. for an extension of article 50 or a revocation of article 50; and that attempts to do the same by cross-party MPs will be interpreted as having government sanction and will also prompt a no-confidence motion, unless energetically opposed by the government.
The case for the above course of action is made in the rest of this blog, as follows.
The position in British and EU Law today.
Today the position in British and EU law is that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union (EU) at 11PM British Time on 12th April 2019. This state of affairs can only be changed in British Law by a further extension to Article 50, by Statutory Instrument under the 2018 EU Withdrawal Act, or outright repeal of the 2018 EU Withdrawal Act. In E.U. law an application to extend the Article 50 process must be made by the British government and then be approved by every E.U. member state. It is argued that the United Kingdom could unilaterally revoke article 50, however this could be disputed, as the High Court drew opposite conclusions in the Gina Miller case in early 2017.
The EU view.
As said above, any extension of the Article 50 process can only be approved by a unanimous decision of the European Council less the United Kingdom, i.e. the other 27 member states. Unlike the Brexit negotiations, which were conducted wholly by the European Commission, any decision to extend is the exclusive competence of the 27 member states. The European Commission has no say in this. Any positive decision to extend must be unanimous, so if France, or Malta or Denmark or any one of the EU27 said no, that would be it, no extension.
Reports on the extended European Council meeting that agreed the first article 50 extension suggest that EU member states were divided, with France, Spain and Belgium in favour of a hard line and refusing an extension. It is suggested that Germany and Poland talked the foregoing countries into allowing the limited extension to 12th April 2019. Further reports today suggest that EU member states are again hardening in their attitudes, and are now openly contemplating refusing any further extension. Thus the European Commission yesterday commented that a No Deal Brexit is “very likely”.
The Conservative Party
I rejoined the Conservative Party in January 2019, after a 10-year stint in UKIP from which I resigned in December 2018, in the wake of Gerard Batten’s disastrous decisions to transform UKIP into a BNP lite party. The Conservative Party’s future, like that of the other major British political parties, is connected with the British National Interest. In any democracy it is not unreasonable for MPs to be concerned with the outlook for their parties, provided that MPs remember that their ultimate loyalty is to their Country and to their Constituents.
It is a central message of this blog that the British National Interest and the interests of the Conservative Party and DUP are completely aligned for Brexit, as is explained below.
The Conservative Party interest is:
(a) To deliver Brexit fully and incontrovertibly right now, as promised to the British People by David Cameron in 2016 and then repeatedly by Theresa May in the years since. The only way to achieve this is by a WTO Brexit on 12th April, the so-called No-deal. If British MPs were to approve of May’s disastrous surrender deal, then the nightmare continues, and grows. Yes, the U.K. would leave the EU Treaties, probably on 22nd May, but on the same day we would rejoin the E.U. institutions, without any voting rights, via Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement which would take the form of an international treaty. Brexit would be delivered in name only, the British People would see through the sham travesty and the division, the arguments and the shenanigans in Parliament would continue apace, with no end in sight. The controversy would be fuelled by the trade negotiations with the E.U., which few people realise have not started to this day. The Conservative Party would be in line to receive the greater part of the electorate’s fury, having been the governing party overseeing the unfolding disaster.
(b) To keep the United Kingdom outside of the European Elections. If the U.K. were to participate in these elections then tens of millions of Conservative voters would be justifiably outraged and moreover these voters would not vote Conservative; they would vote for UKIP or Nigel Farage’s new Brexit Party. And many of these voters, having voted UKIP or Brexit Party in the Euro Elections, would continue to support these parties in future British elections, repeating the pattern in 2009/2010 and most especially in 2014/2015.
(c) To see the final end of UKIP and prevent the emergence of Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party. If the Conservative government delivers a WTO Brexit on 12th April 2019 then UKIP will continue on its rapid path to extinction and the Brexit Party will be stillborn: dead before it was ever born.
(d) To fight a British General Election in 2022, three years after having delivered Brexit fully and replaced Theresa May with a new leader. In this way Theresa May’s successor will have ample time to bed down, move on from Brexit and develop his or her program for the future. As explained above, a WTO Brexit on 12th April is only way of delivering this. Any other option: May’s disaster deal, a rerun of the referendum or revocation of article 50 means the next general election being dominated by the Conservative Party’s disastrous handling of Brexit.
The DUP interest is:
(a) To uphold the Union between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. I will not rehearse the arguments about the appalling Backstop and the blatant attempt by the E.U. to carve Northern Ireland away from the United Kingdom, as Martin Selmayr has gleefully admitted. Clearly a clean WTO Brexit is the best outcome for Unionists; no ifs no buts, just total clarity: the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland becomes again 100% a Sovereign Country, with no obligations of any sort whatsoever to the E.U.
(b) To deliver prosperity to Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland, like many parts of the English North and Midlands, along with much of Wales and Scotland, has become de-industrialised and over-dependent on government civil service employment to keep the local economy going. British manufacturing needs to make a major comeback in Northern Ireland, just like it needs to in much of Great Britain. Leaving the E.U. is not a panacea. But it will give the whole country, including Northern Ireland, the opportunity to chart a new course, with the powers over employment, competition, state aid, industrial policy, trade, energy and the environment in British hands not E.U. hands.
The British National Interest
- The British National Interest is dominated by the overwhelming need to bring the Country together and to re-assert the fundamental principles of democracy and the rule of Law. On 23rd June 2016 the Referendum on E.U. membership was held, in the context of public declarations by the then Prime Minister David Cameron that the People’s decision would be implemented i.e. we would leave the E.U. if the majority voted to leave, and remain if the majority voted to remain.
- As we all know 17.4 million voted to leave and 16.1 million voted to remain, giving a clear majority to leave. Most British people expected this decision to be respected even if they were on the losing side. This is because there is a greater principle at stake than E.U. membership: democracy itself. Whilst many in the 16.1 million who voted to remain will have been disappointed by the referendum result, leaving the E.U. does not mean we are out of the E.U. forever: the referendum directed the government to leave the E.U. today and did not in any way forbid future generations from deciding to rejoin. In twenty years’ time for example, the public mood might swing towards E.U. membership again, and we could conceivably rejoin the E.U. But today the issue before the Nation is to implement the referendum decision in full, and thereby underline the fundamental democratic principle that the People decide.
- The Country is understandably very tired of the Brexit process and wants a conclusion. Leaving the E.U. on 12th April 2019 will bring this conclusion and the Brexit process will end immediately. In the following weeks and months people will observe that the earth is still spinning on its axis, that life continues and most especially private enterprise, the engine of the whole World economy. The scare stories about “No deal” will die their own deaths as reality imposes its own agenda, and people will move on. The simple act of continuing to live and work normally after Brexit day will bring most people together. Having campaigned extensively in the Referendum my perception is that most remain supporters were worried about their jobs; when they live the reality of prosperity following Brexit day then I think the Brexit divisions will fade away. A minority will remain discontented. These are people, characterised perhaps by the journalist Polly Toynbee, who are clearly very uncomfortable with any sense of British identity, and who saw in the E.U. a preferred national entity for their loyalties. They will never be placated, and will ultimately have to decide individually whether to adapt to a Sovereign Britain or become citizens of an E.U. member state.
- If we were to extend article 50 into the European Elections, rerun the referendum and/or belatedly agree Theresa May’s disastrous Withdrawal Agreement then the Brexit process would continue, with no end in sight. The public mood would become progressively more and more hostile to the political structures; already recent opinion polls suggest that around 60% of the public believe Parliament has been deliberately obstructing Brexit – sadly they are right, and this reinforces the reality that whilst the politicians can stop Brexit, they cannot deceive the public.
- The British economic interest is to revive British Manufacturing industry, which has stagnated (not grown) over the last 25 years. Contrary to received wisdom, Britain’s export performance of goods, as opposed to services, to the E.U. has been very poor indeed. Over the last 25 years our exports of goods have increased by around 2% in real terms, compared with an increase of more than 80% for our goods exports to the rest of the World. This is why our goods exports outside of the E.U. have overtaken our goods exports to the E.U. Our exports of services to the E.U. trebled over the last 25 years, but they also trebled to the rest of the World. Consequently most of our service exports, like most of our goods exports, continue to go outside the E.U. Only 44% of our total exports went to the E.U. in 2017, and the percentage goes down every year. The EU27 today only represents around 12% of the World economy – our future is in the World, not in the E.U.
Conservative and DUP MPs have the opportunity, perhaps rare in politics, to follow a course of action that is 100% in the Country’s interest and 100% in the interests of their political parties.
Just Do It!