“Any deal will do” MPs group are wrong

by Nick Kent | 17.09.2019

Some MPs think that any deal which gets the UK out of the EU on Halloween will do because then we will have “honoured” the referendum.

The cross-party “any deal will do” group of MPs includes Rory Stewart, who was recently expelled from the Conservative Party, and Labour’s Stephen Kinnock. It is understandable that MPs think we need to get on and settle Brexit. But rushing into a new agreement with the EU, which will largely involve putting lipstick on Theresa May’s pig of a deal, isn’t the right answer.  

For a start, such a deal could involve rejigging the “backstop” so only Northern Ireland is covered by the bare-bones customs union. If so, that will do real damage to the United Kingdom. May didn’t just reject the “Northern Ireland only backstop” because of the DUP’s opposition but because the Scottish Tories objected strongly too. They were concerned that Scotland would demand a similar arrangement – and that would be a step towards Scottish independence.

What’s more, Boris Johnson is still bickering about the withdrawal treaty and not the future EU relationship. If MPs approve any deal he does, there would be just 14 months to negotiate and ratify a new relationship with the EU before the so-called “transition” period ends. Nailing down such a complicated trade deal usually takes anything between five and 10 years.

It is particularly odd that some Labour MPs want to do this. Give Johnson a deal and he has the platform to win the election. Maybe these MPs hate Jeremy Corbyn more than the Prime Minister. But if their strategy is to buy off angry working-class Leave voters in their constituencies, don’t they realise that electing a hard-line rightwing Tory government would be even more unpopular with them? 

And if Johnson won such an election, he would dismantle the “level playing field” elements of May’s deal. So out of the window would go pledges on workers’ rights, environmental protection rules and an end to much police and security co-operation. And the EU funding for disadvantaged areas that has supported so many Labour-held constituencies would be gone too.  

Johnson may be throwing money around at the moment like a banker celebrating his annual bonus but this is all part of his strategy to win the election. What was his first pledge in the Tory leadership election? To cut the taxes of the highest earners. The Prime Minister’s supporters are not from the liberal wing of the Tories that believes in public services but from the hard-nosed group that expects to do well out of Brexit.

“Any deal will do” is a desperate cry and one MPs should reject.

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Edited by James Earley

Categories: UK Politics

5 Responses to ““Any deal will do” MPs group are wrong”

  • And still there are people who believe Johnson. Worse, who believe in Johnson as a capable politician who will do them a favour. It’s unbelievable.

  • Why is anyone still talking about honouring the referendum, when we know it was irredeemably corrupt and broke electoral law? Essentially they are condoning crime. If someone was mis-sold a financial policy, would these people still insist that the purchase should still stand? Very difficult to understand the position of Stewart, Kinnock and co especially as they seem relatively decent politicians.

  • I absolutely agree John. I think the Netflix film the ‘The Great Hack’ should be compulsory watching for anyone left in any doubt about the corruption involved with the EU Referendum. The point that personal data appears to have been taken and used to target swing voters in both here and in the US Presidential Election should be of great cause for concern for anyone who claims to believe in Democracy.

  • This was posted a few days ago in the Guardian Thank you to the poster.

    @AlienInThisWorld….. please stop with this will of the electorate nonsense…. the full results of the referendum…..
    Leave 17,410742 37.44%
    Remain 16,141241 34.71%
    No vote 12,948018 27.85%
    Registered Electorate 46,500,001
    Note that just under 2/5 of the electorate voted to leave. 3/5 didn’t. Now unless you believe that we should ignore the 13 million who didn’t vote, or the Britons abroad who couldn’t vote either, the argument that the 17.4 million is the will of British People rings pretty hollow….. Parliament is sovereign, referenda are advisory…. Parliament decides…. it’s your constitution you really should understand it before spouting nonsense