by John Ward
Brexit has become a big news story over the last 24 hours. The only problem is, as usual the mainstream media have missed it.
Boris Johnson is not going to push any new UK initiatives on the Withdrawal Deal. Once the UK Parliament ratifies WA2, the legislation will sail through Brussels and Strasbourg. Unless lots of people are fibbing to me, we are going to “leave” the EU on 31st January. This will leave us accepting the ruinous EIB agreement.
It’s going to be Brino, not Brexit. EU President Frau von der Leyen’s optimism about the end-January leaving date solidified my conviction last night: it’s a done deal.
But as The Slog predicted three days ago, Brussels now intends to begin another stage of Operation Never. Von der Leyen made this brutally clear by calling the December deadline for trade negotiations “basically, impossible to meet”.
There is no surprise in this: under the WA agreed between the two sides, we are committed to continue paying vast amounts of blood-money to the EU every month from now on. Thanks to the pathetic failure of the UK government class to incorporate a transition period deadline into the WA, Brussels has no motive at all to meet the deadline.
Except we could walk out without a deal next December. The EU is gambling that we won’t do it: they may be wrong, but my suspicion is, they’re right.
BoJo should respond to von der Leyen’s dismissive statement with a firm riposte now. Don’t hold your breath.
Johnson merely made it clear at the Number Ten meeting with the Commission President that the UK would not be requesting an extension to the transition period at the end of December. There’s plenty of wriggle room in that.
Either way, we’re going to be stuck with the European Investment Bank liabilities – which are horrendous. I understand from a reliable source that at least one Tory MP proposes to put down a written question on the issue. We shall see.
I will persist in giving jubilant Brexiteers a hard time about this until such time as they start paying attention to what’s really going on.
Like I say, it’s a big story; but Breximania is waning.
Stay tuned…..and remember – IABATO: you read it here first.