An abuse of government power, a special DC conference invite, and other things you need to know


Theresa May officially betrayed Brexit yesterday as her lily-livered Cabinet signed off on the softest Brexit possible, leaving hardline Eurosceptics incensed. In a three-page statement, the British government announced that the Cabinet was finally united on a “collective position” over EU withdrawal, one that will ultimately see us leave the European Union in name only.

May’s proposal to the EU will include a “common rulebook” on all industrial goods and agricultural products, also known as a Single Market. Furthermore, she seeks to establish a “Facilitated Customs Arrangement”, also known as a Customs Union. In addition, she expressed a commitment to “labour mobility” – you guessed it, free movement. Wave after wave of wage-condensing, public services draining mass migration will continue in spite of the resounding rejection of it by the 17.4m two years ago.

All three of these factions of EU integration were explicitly dismissed in the Conservative Party’s 2017 election manifesto. Yesterday, they all became official government policy. Proof the Party cannot be trusted. Brexiteers across the land need to fight back and squeeze the Tories at the ballot box, it’s the only pressure they respond to.

It gets worse. This is the initial negotiating position taken by the British government. One can only assume it will get softer after discussions with Brussels, if that’s possible.

As for the so-called Brexiteers within the Cabinet? Well, no resignations – a predictable outcome by career politicians who, as Nigel Farage tweeted last night “don’t have a principle between them”. He must now return to frontline politics to reignite the campaign for our nation’s sacred autonomy.

This sell-out to the global corporates is the final nail in the Tory coffin. We knew they were useless, but this is a complete betrayal of the referendum result and flies in the face of democracy; a total disregard for the will of the British people

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In the run-up to the Chequers summit Liam Fox was have been given “personal assurances” that Britain’s independent trade policy will be restored, but that remains very much open to interpretation.

The international trade secretary and his fellow ministers had already been informed that due to the government’s disastrous commitment to regulatory alignment with the EU, a trade deal with the United States would be impossible. Washington has made it clear that EU regulations are too prohibitive; only in the event that Britain manages its own economy will it talk shop. Fox can now look forward to striking deals with the minnows of the global economy.

The two fingers shoved at the America is particularly frustrating after US ambassador Woody Johnson wrote an inspiring op-ed in the Daily Mail:

“I do support the British people and the decision you have taken. And I have never doubted for a moment that you are going to make it a success,” wrote Johnson, signing off: “I do support the British people and the decision you have taken. And I have never doubted for a moment that you are going to make it a success.” Why can’t we produce more cheerleaders of his calibre?

Downing Street had been uncharacteristically diligent in keeping the contents of the facilitated customs arrangement secret. Nevertheless the impending disappointment was well sign-posted. Jacob Rees-Mogg wrote an article in Monday’s Telegraph, warning Theresa May will ruin her Party’s electoral prospects if she turns Britain into a “vassal state”.

“At Chequers, the Prime Minister must stick to her ‘No Deal is better than a bad deal’ mantra, or risk splitting the Conservative Party like Sir Robert Peel.”

Rees-Mogg’s caution is warranted. A BMG poll has found the Tories would lose at least a quarter of voters if the prime minister rolled-back on any Brexit red lines.

A much-needed opportunity for Nigel Farage to re-enter the fray and rail against continued free movement of people. On Wednesday, the Brexit hero pledged to reimpose himself if Britain does not detach from the EU treaties in March of next year. “In those circumstances, I would have no choice,” he said.

Spokespeople for a true Brexit like Farage, Rees-Mogg and Ambassador Johnson are vital. We cannot underestimate the extent of collusion between Remainers spread across government, business and internationally. It was revealed this week David Cameron had fed the “back of the trade queue” line to Barack Obama at the height of the Referendum campaign, a move which flopped spectacularly.

In Europe: Angela Merkel averted a career-ending crisis early this week with a May-esque fudge over so-called transit zones – deportation centres that already exist. Merkel’s plan was swallowed by political rival Horst Seehofer, Germany’s interior minister. She hopes to send back asylum seekers originally registered in other European countries, in line with the EU’s daft asylum protocols.

The can has been kicked, Seehofer tamed. But in meetings with leaders of the continent’s anti-mass migration movement, Matteo Salvini of Italy and Sebastien Kurz of Austria, Merkel will struggle to get the bilateral arrangements her whole plan is dependent on. The German Chancellor is desperately trying to make it look like illegal immigrants cannot cross national borders within the EU when they of course can, easily. This window-dressed non-solution makes Britain’s continued participation in open border Europe all the more distressing.

Merkel’s problems will only worsen. German business is not on her side as she continues to tinker with useless solutions to her 2015 invitation to migrants crossing the Med instead of addressing the country’s serious challenges, Brexit being just one of them. “It’s amazing how anti-Merkel they all are,” a senior European politician told the FT.

Not so Kurz, who recognises the danger for Europe of a no-deal: “Our goal is we reach an agreement with the UK but if that’s not possible, I think we have to avoid a hard Brexit.” Seehofer also chipped in this week. He fears a break in security cooperation would “affect all European citizens”. Some more than others though. Germany is exposed to the Med, Britain much less so.

A day ago, Kurz and Seehofer’s words were reason for optimism. Reminders that have always had the bargaining power to force upon Brussels a future economic relationship faithful to the Referendum result. A crisis-ridden continent cannot lose preferential access to its biggest market. But that was then, our blindly obsessed leaders have since chosen to defy the people and their own manifesto commitments to pursue a humiliating Brexit only in name. This is a sad day for democracy.

Economy update: BMW makes a vital U-turn on its misreported threat of leaving the UK, where it employs more than 8,000 people. Liam Fox’s Department for International Trade celebrates export growth, particularly to non-EU markets with Australia making a hefty outlay of £20bn on state of the art combat ships. At home, both JCB and Jaguar Land Rover are increasing investment, reflecting wider optimism in the business community about Brexit.

Kind regards,
The Leave.EU Team

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