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4 of Raab’s worst blunders

by Jekaterina Drozdovica | 13.08.2019

Remember how, as Brexit secretary, Dominic Raab said he hadn’t understood how much trade went through Dover? As foreign secretary and first secretary of state, he’s just as hapless. Here are some of his worst blunders.

“Easier” to get a deal after we crash out

Raab told the BBC late last month that: “The prospect of… getting a good deal will be easier after we have left.” 

This isn’t true. Under Article 50 which sets out the terms for leaving the EU, the European Council agrees the Withdrawal Agreement on the basis of qualified majority voting by the member states. The European Parliament needs to approve the deal by a simple majority but there is no need for ratification by national parliaments. 

If we leave, member states may need to approve a deal unanimously and ratification by national parliaments may be required too. As EU law professor Steve Peers wrote in The Telegraph, the procedure depends on the exact content of the deal but “in no way would the negotiation of a deal after a no deal Brexit be procedurally easier than at present”.

Irish backstop “undemocratic”

In the same interview, Raab said that the Irish backstop was “undemocratic’. But the backstop was agreed by an elected UK government. Even Boris Johnson, the current prime minister, signed up to the core principle in December 2017 when he was foreign secretary? (See para 49 of the “Joint Report”). 

What’s more, as David Hannay, a former UK ambassador to the EU, noted in an article for InFacts: Northern Ireland voted in favour of staying in the EU in the referendum. “So the only thing undemocratic in Northern Ireland terms is the Democratic Unionist Party’s insistence on removing the backstop.”

No deal warnings during the referendum

Raab continued to his loose grip on facts in the same interview: “We made clear, those in the campaign, that we should strive for a good deal but if that wasn’t available that we should go on and make a success of Brexit.” Yet no one has found evidence that he did. We have already rebutted this claim.

He “hadn’t quite understood” how much trade went through Dover

Talking about future trade with the EU at a technology conference in 2018 Raab said: “I hadn’t quite understood the full extent of this, but if you look at the UK and if you look at how we trade in goods, we are particularly reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing.”

Dover is the key route for the UK trade to reach the continental Europe. In 2017 the port handled 2.9 million lorries amounting to 17% of the UK trade in goods

If Raab and his boss manage to engineer their crash-out Brexit, it will be interesting to see what happens to all those lorries.

Edited by Hugo Dixon

Categories: Brexit, UK Politics

4 Responses to “4 of Raab’s worst blunders”

  • Please, will someone put us out of our misery and clearly state that a no deal cannot be done. Also, that forcing the country into a position where 2 of the 4 members of the UK voted overwhelmingly to remain will be obliged to leave the EU against the ‘will of the people’.

    This will no doubt create a situation where Scotland will again go to the polls about leaving the UK and civil war will possibly break out in Ireland.

    How can this person put in place by less than 0.75% of the population carry on like a mad man, spending our money for us to be manipulated and misinformed about what is coming up and spreading lies and more lies about what they are doing?

    He is selling the UK to the highest bidder. That is, offering the highest backhander to the criminals who are organising all of this.

    How can this be called a democracy?

  • How come that people still wish to use the term democracy and democratic after what happened in 2016? The intense use of untruths and the manipulation of popular opinions by opinion-influencing specialists via the internet and written media. Never mind the massive amount of money to do that job that became available from certain sources with an interest in Brexit? Democracy died years ago.

  • Raabid brexit is one of the most despicable hard-right loons in a long list of undemocratic brexiters. He’s on record calling for the repeal of the HRA & the denunciation of the ECHR. This from the son of a Jewish refugee from E. Europe. Has he got father issues? To think that this utter fool worked for a City Law firm & worked for the FCO only leads me to think that the bar must be set low these days. He’d never have passed my course in Public International Law.