It’s absolutely extraordinary: the MSM have been stymied! There were no leaks on “That Deal” – not from No 10, not from Brussels. All they and we know is that the EU heads are meeting today and tomorrow and that a deal is mostly ‘done’. The only stumbling blocks seem to be the DUP and ERG. Well – it’s always good to have scapegoats!
Regarding the lack of leaks stymying the MSM, we mentioned yesterday that one ‘leaker’ who provided ‘news’ from the Cabinet had removed herself. The other major ‘leak’ was usually found in Brussels. In a roundabout way, this complaint by a former UK ambassador to the EU shows how that Brussels leak was stopped up. RemainCentral reports:
“The government’s decision to withdraw officials from meetings in Brussels has reduced their ability to find out what is going on, a former ambassador to the European Union has claimed.” (link, paywalled)
Yes indeed – if there aren’t as many officials sitting around and ‘finding out what’s going on’ then there aren’t as many officials who can leak, as they were wont to. Simple, isn’t it!
At the time of writing, all we know is that there’s no text, talks between Johnson and the DUP will continue, and that the EU will also work on “That Deal”, the substance of which could be presented to the EU Heads tomorrow.
If you think that there were therefore no Brexit ‘News’, there were, and how! They’re all from the “You couldn’t make it up” department. They also demonstrate to a nicety how our ‘prominent’ Brexit ‘reporters’ in the MSM, especially the TV ones, were reduced to tweeting idiocies – like what food was being delivered to No 10 – because their sources had dried up.
Firstly, there was the breathless report that Johnson would definitely ask for an extension. What actually happened was that Steve Barclay, DExEU minister, said when asked that Johnson would obey the law – that’s the Surrender act for you and me – and would write that letter if necessary. Since the PM and his Cabinet colleagues have said so repeatedly, how was that ‘Nooos’?
Then we had 37 Remain MPs writing a letter to Donald Tusk, begging him to stop “That Deal” – we mentioned it yesterday. That was topped by a ‘delegation’ of Remain Harlots travelling to Brussels yesterday (here) in a last-ditch attempt to halt “That Deal”. Well, I’m sure the EUrocrats were impressed:
“Dominic Grieve led a cross-party group of MPs to Brussels yesterday to ask for a long Brexit delay if Boris Johnson failed to get a deal. The delegation, which included representatives from all opposition parties, lobbied EU member states as well as the European parliament over the terms of another delay. The visit, which included meeting French and Dutch officials, reveals fears among some Remain MPs that the EU will offer only a short extension.” (link, paywalled)
I’ll not use ‘hurty words’ to label them … aren’t they’re like prisoners begging the prison governor to please not release them but keep them in, please!
Then we heard that one of the Arch Remainers, Jolyon Maugham QC, is planning another court action, to be put before the Scottish High Court today (here). This is to stop us leaving with a deal, even though he, like all of us, doesn’t even know what’s in it! And yes, that’s right: we must not leave the EU with ‘No Deal’ and now we must not leave with a deal!
The prize for a desperate but hilarious attempt to stop whatever deal there may be goes to the Remain Harlots in the HoC. They are now in talks to try and vote down the motion before the House today to have that sitting on Saturday (here). This is to prevent Johnson to get his deal voted through so that he must write that Begging Letter and get an extension.
If that motion goes ahead we’ll have another HoC theatre where Remainers can show how serious they are: first they make a Law to stop ‘No Deal’, and now, as a deal is imminent, they want to stop themselves (!) from even voting on it (!) by refusing to sit (!). That definitely gets the prize in the “You couldn’t make it up” category.
In the absence of actual news, the MSM were reduced to write their articles based on speculations which were based on tweets. As mentioned above, the latest scapegoat is the DUP with a nod to the ERG, and of course EU ‘sources’ must be heard:
“One EU ambassador said that the best-case outcome was going to be a political, rather than legal, agreement by European leaders today. “It can only be a political agreement. We have not seen texts and done legal scrubbing. We will need more time for that,” he said. The withdrawal text would then need legal checking by customs authorities and the EU’s teams of lawyers, requiring a technical extension. “It is too late to give a final ‘yes’ tomorrow. We can give a political ‘yes’ and then come back to it,” the ambassador added.” (link, paywalled)
Oh yes – the EU ‘needs more time’ … three years wasn’t long enough. How long that technical extension will last is another question not yet answered. Also: if we’re ‘technically Out’ but still need that ‘technical extension’, will we be expected to pay our current contributions, will we still be under the ECJ boot? We should be told!
Then there are some thoughts in RemainCentral about the numbers game in the HoC should that Saturday session go ahead:
“If he has DUP support, the numbers look tight but not impossible to get the deal through. The prime minister is likely to offer to restore the whip to the 21 former Tory MPs who defied the government over the Benn act. He will also warn Tory Brexiteers that they will be kicked out of the parliamentary party if they defy him. With the support of the handful of Labour MPs who have backed previous versions of Theresa May’s deal this should be enough to give him a majority.” (link, paywalled)
That ‘plan’ disregards the various Remain amendments aimed to force the Begging Letter to be written, or to force a 2nd Referendum to be held. But all is not lost for the Remain Harlots:
But that is not the end of the parliamentary struggle. If he wants to avoid an extension he will need to pass the deal and its provisions into domestic law by October 31. There will certainly be an attempt to make the agreement conditional on a confirmatory referendum and effort will also be made to fracture the government coalition through amending the legislation — with very little time to get it passed through both the Commons and the Lords by the October 31 deadline.If he has succeeded in striking a deal that can unite the majority of his party with the DUP, however, government whips have long been confident that they can push legislation through in time without the need for a technical extension.” (link, paywalled)
That looks like another few ‘hot’ sessions in Parliament is on the cards. In her opinion piece for the DT, Sherelle Jacobs makess some pertinent points about this mess, especially in regard to NI:
“Morality aside, I doubt a deal will pass, not least because of Labour – which is already trying to block a Saturday parliamentary sitting to vote on it. Any politician who tries to make Northern Ireland Brexit’s sacrificial lamb risks ending up a lame duck. Instead, a WTO exit may be the only way to solve the border issue. The EU, Ireland and Britain have all said they will never enforce a border. And despite Remainer claims, what country would dare to take such a diplomatically hostile action as to lodge a complaint on the grounds that such an arrangement violates WTO rules? Even if there were customs duty checks on the island of Ireland, it is scaremongering to declare that this would fuel terrorism. The Irish authorities already police against excise duty offences, like smuggling booze and fuel across the border, without paramilitary backlashes.” (paywalled link)
Well, that is certainly too reasonable for our Remain Harlots! They want their extension and they want it now …! I leave you with a tweet from ‘Old Holborn’ from last night:
“Everybody relax. – The deal will be finalised tomorrow, the EU27 will be told what to vote by Merkel 5 minutes before the vote anyway and UK Parliament will reject on Saturday because Parliament. – Then it’s No Deal time. And the real fun starts. – Night all. Sleep well.”
That might well be how this plays out. After a good night’s sleep, I look forward to the performance today in the HoC: will they stop that Saturday session? We’ll see.
Meanwhile, remember that the MSM know as much as we do, and that any leaks and breathless information on ’the deal’ will likely come from EU ‘sources’ who have of course their own agenda, as have our home-grown Remainers. While we wait, we’ll still