Whistling Towards the Exit – but the Best Brexit Remains in the Balance

Yesterday, the Government published the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill – previously titled The Great Repeal Bill. The Bill will end the supremacy of EU law, transferring EU laws onto the UK statute book – which can then be amended by Parliament. This is, of course, a huge step towards Brexit.

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However, in recent weeks there have been multiple reminders the Remainers and soft-Brexiteers alike are trying to do everything they can to water down Brexit, or scupper it completely. Wealthy Remoaners like Richard Branson, Gina Miller and economist Anatole Kaletsky are still throwing their money towards anti-Brexit movements.

David Davis, in a written parliamentary statement, said yesterday: “The Government recognises that the UK has obligations to the EU, and the EU obligations to the UK, that will survive the UK’s withdrawal—and that these need to be resolved.” This looks to Get Britain Out as if he is meekly bending the knee to Brussels on the Brexit Bill! The Government must make sure we are not railroaded into paying a penny more than we are legally obliged to, and the EU pays every penny of its obligations to us.

In reaction to the unveiling of the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill there was a chorus of vitriol from Remoaners. Labour’s Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer vowed Labour would vote against the Bill, unless major changes are made. The Lib Dem’s outgoing leader, Tim Farron, said the Government is going to face “hell” getting the Bill through Parliament. Nicola Sturgeon and Carwyn Jones, First Ministers of Scotland and Wales respectively, also attacked the Bill. All this about a Bill which is procedural, and completely necessary for ensuring legal continuity after Brexit – which is, after all, what the majority of the Great British Public voted for in the EU Referendum last year, and as polls have suggested since, the majority of those who voted Remain, have since accepted we are leaving both the Single Market and Customs Union as well as getting Out of the EU.

On June 29th, Labour’s staunch Remoaner MP, Chuka Umunna, tabled an amendment to the Queen’s Speech proposing the UK should remain in the Single Market and Customs Union. He was supported by 101 other MPs, 50 of them Labour. Emily Thornberry – hardly a staunch Brexiteers herself – accused Umunna of “Virtue Signalling”.

We have also seen the ridiculous idea of a ‘transition period’ enter the debate on Brexit. Business leaders have been calling for a transitionary period in order to avoid a ‘cliff edge’. In Government, the main driver of this idea has been the still staunch Remoaner, and Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond. He is trying to disguise his attempts to pursue a soft Brexit as a Brexit which puts ‘jobs and prosperity first’!

As we have argued before, a soft Brexit would certainly not put jobs and prosperity first. A soft Brexit would not, in fact, be a genuine Brexit at all. We have to leave the Single Market and Customs Union, so we can be free of burdensome regulations and make our own free trade deals.

In this vein, some very positive news. Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve seen countries queuing up to sign trade deals with the UK after Brexit. Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull visited the UK last week and said he does not want to “muck around” and wants a free trade agreement “as soon as the UK is able to do so”. New Zealand’s Minister of Trade Todd McClay has said he is confident a free trade deal with the UK can further improve the current access each nation has to the other’s markets. US President Donald Trump has already said he expects a trade deal to be made with Britain “very, very quickly”. Japan, China and India have all also expressed their strong interest in securing trade deals with Britain.

Project Fear could not have been more wrong. Britain’s global standing and heritage is coming to the fore. In voting for Brexit last year, we unshackled ourselves from a stagnant trading bloc and the world’s fastest-growing nations are now showing they are keen to share their prosperity with us – and as quickly as possible.

Prime Minister, Theresa May, has weathered the storm caused by the General Election – so far. Rumours were circulating of the possibility of a potential Tory leadership race, but meanwhile, May has pledged to stay on to deliver Brexit. Conservative leadership hopefuls seem to have decided the chance of a Labour/Corbyn Government is a far too scary prospect, in spite of their ambitions. This is good news for Brexit. A period of relative calm is a necessity to deliver the best Brexit for a Global Britain.

One major industry which has been strongly adversely affected by our EU membership has been fishing. It was great to see Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, announcing our withdrawal from the London Fisheries Convention, which allowed EU vessels to fish within 6-12 miles of our coast. This will be a boost to our fishing industry, which will turn into a boom after Brexit, when we re-secure full jurisdiction over our fishing waters.

On a lighter note, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said this week the EU could “go whistle” over its extortionate ‘divorce’ bill demands. Indeed, there is much more the EU can go whistle about. Their demands the Court of Justice of the European Union should have jurisdiction over EU nationals’ rights in the UK after Brexit is yet another. As luck would have it, Acme Whistles, based in Birmingham, is the world’s largest and most famous producer of whistles. The UK is well placed, then, to provide many – high quality – whistles for EU leaders up to and after Brexit.

Now, on to what we have been writing about recently.

The EU faces a €10 billion black hole in its budget when the UK leaves the European Union. On Reaction, we argue this is going to put a large strain on already stretched European budgets. It will also re-expose the wounds left between the EU’s richer and poorer nations, left by the Sovereign Debt Crisis. (How will the EU fill the hole in its budget after Brexit?)

On CapX we make the case EU countries, and Eurozone ones in particular, are still heavily indebted and have done nothing to address their underlying structural issues that led to the Sovereign Debt Crisis. Even a moderate global downturn could push the EU back into crisis. (The EU can’t escape its economic legacy)

Anti-EU sentiment is still rife in many countries that apparently voted for pro-EU candidates. France and Italy in particular, as well as Greece. It is only status quo inertia which keeps this from boiling over. On Reaction, we argue this still leaves the EU in a very precarious position. (The EU’s future is far from secure)

Many Remainers insist leaving the EU means turning our backs on the West altogether and leaving Eastern Europe at the mercy of Russia. As we argue on Comment Central, the self-interest of various Member States makes the EU incapable of seriously standing up to Putin – it’s a strong NATO, including Brexit Britain, which will really defend the West. (The EU can’t stand up to Russia)

When we take control of our waters, how will we ensure EU-based vessels do not simply register as ‘British’ and fish our waters anyway? On BrexitCentral, we advocate reviving in some form the the Merchant Shipping Act 1988, a law requiring British-registered vessels to be mostly British-owned, which was originally struck down because it broke EU rules. (The UK must close all the loopholes to take back control of its fishing waters)

Today on The Commentator we offer our take on the Great Repeal Bill, now renamed the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill. We say this is a crucial piece of legislation which is necessary to ensure a smooth Brexit, and call on Labour Remoaners to stop posturing, put the national interest first, and vote for the Bill. (The vital importance of the Great Repeal Bill)

The recent push by Chancellor Philip Hammond for a transitional deal is a Remoaner Trojan Horse. It would keep us under the yoke of Brussels for years, and risk us being pushed back into the EU. Those considering it should reconsider, as we discuss on our blog for The Commentator. (Enough talk about a transitional deal with the EU)

President Erdoğan has been threatening to throw out his migrant deal with the EU – for which he is paid £1.76 billion a year to keep migrants in Turkey – unless they give him more. As we discuss on CapX, this is a serious threat to the EU as well as the UK. (Will Erdoğan open Turkey’s European border?)

Tory Europhiles have been labelled ‘Sensibles’ by the anti-Brexit media. This is ironic, as their senseless attacks on the Government all but ensure a worse deal with the EU. Of course, a bad deal could give them reason to shunt us back in, as we discuss on The Commentator (The senseless Remoaning Tory “sensibles”)

That’s it for this news bulletin this time. Please remember – ONWARDS AND OUTWARDS – as we are not OUT yet!

Best wishes and thank you for reading.

Your support is hugely appreciated.

Jayne Adye, Campaign Director, and the Team at Get Britain Out

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