Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Seconds Out

Anyone remotely impressed by Theresa May's speech has not been reading Arron Banks's Twitter, @Arron_banks.

Everyone should. I am very much starting to like Arron Banks.

Both Houses of Parliament will reject withdrawal from the Single Market, if it ever gets that far.

But whereas the composition of the House of Commons can be changed, that of the House of Lords cannot.

At least, not without what would be the ludicrous creation of hundreds of Peers in one go.

Of course, that is the point. Giving the Lords a veto is May's utterly Tory way of ensuring that the whole scheme is killed off in the end.

This has nothing to do with such reforms as there were under Tony Blair.

Those reforms postdated the European Communities Act, the Single European Act, and the Maastricht Treaty.

This looks like it, the real possibility of a new second chamber.

But there is no point waiting for May to come up with anything specific.

Likewise, opposition to an elected second chamber was a key Blairite identifier, like support for First Past the Post, and opposition to the lowering of the voting age.

Instead, the Left needs to get in there with a specific proposal that would maximise the representation of the Labour Left, of smaller Left formations that had the good sense not to use the C-word or what have you for electoral purposes, and of non-party Left activists.

There are alliances to be made here from the Lib Dems, to the Greens, to UKIP, to the Conservative Right, to Plaid Cymru, to the UUP or the DUP (whichever was doing less well at the time), to the SDLP, to the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland.

Watch this space.


  1. When the Article 50 clock runs out, it's either the Government's deal or we leave the EU with no deal.

    Every MP who voted against the Government deal, would be voting for the hardest Brexit of all, and thus voting to send Britain over the cliff edge.

    Is Corbyn and Labour so in love with the EU that they would destroy millions of jobs by rejecting the deal?

    We're about to find out.


    1. She'll be long gone by then.

      It doesn't work at all in the way that you seem to think. If either House says no, then we just stay in, at least if everyone else says that we can. That is why May has given a veto to the Lords, which will certainly say no.

    2. Nobody knows if there's any such thing as an Article 50 clock or an Article 50 anything. Nobody knows anything about Article 50. Labour are the least of May's problems, the people who hate her are behind her and alongside her.

      If at the end of whatever you think is the Article 50 period we either had no deal or Parliament refused to accept it, as long as the other member states let us stay we could just stay. Who knows that we couldn't? It's never been tried.

  2. The Tory line for my entire life has been to defend the EU as a free trade area. They wanted 'widening not deepening'. Today that's completely gone. Except, as you say, in the House of Lords, where Theresa May is obviously depending on them to hold the line. As you say, no one has any idea what happens with Article 50 because it has never been attempted before. If Parliament still said no to the deal it would just be called off as long as the other states were agreeable, anyone who didn't like that would have to lump it.

  3. May's fate is sealed after today. She chose the honourable but thick David Davis, the only man in Europe to claim to know how Article 50 works when nobody really has a clue. She chose the deeply dodgy Liam Fox and the globally ridiculed Boris Johnson. She abandoned her own supporters and they are about to abandon her. She'll be lucky to be there on the day she said she'd invoke Article 50. Whoever is PM by then will never have made any such commitment.

  4. It doesn't work at all in the way that you seem to think.

    Oh, but it does. It's all been worked out brilliantly.

    ""Brexit: Britain will quit EU even if MPs vote down deal in Parliament'""

    ""Brexit minister David Davis told MPs that votes in the Commons and Lords, promised in Mrs May’s speech, would be on the deal she secures and not on Brexit itself.

    “The referendum last year set in motion a circumstance where the UK is going to leave the European Union, and it won’t change that.”


    It's deal or no deal, folks.

    1. David Davis is a good man. But he is not a very clever one. He ought to be a campaigning backbencher, and he will be again soon enough.

    2. Don't believe everything you read in the Evening Standard. Like Mr. Lindsay, I have always wanted out of Thatcher's Single Market that Jeremy Corbyn opposed at the time. But like Mr. Lindsay and Mr. Corbyn, I have absolutely no confidence in Theresa May or the admirable but ill suited David Davis to deliver it. May doesn't know the first about the first thing and Davis would be better as a Select Committee Chairman.

    3. He would be good at that, wouldn't he? He would make a good Speaker, too. Now, there's a thought.

  5. The parliamentary vote will never happen and nor will Brexit. May looked completely shattered giving that speech and could be invalided out of Downing St. on doctor's orders.

  6. "not a very clever man": who is more educated, and accomplished: David Davis or Jeremy Corbyn?

    Davis may have come from a council estate. But he has a University degree and a sparkling 17-year business career at Tate & Lyle.

    The Leader of the Opposition, by contrast, is the most dim, uneducated leader Labour has ever had.

    Never had a real job.

    Couldn't even pass an A-Level.

    1. One of them has won a Leadership Election. Twice. The first time was against three Oxbridge graduates.

  7. Anon 00:30. Time for your medication. Do you want to bet money that the vote won't happen? I wouldn't if I were you.

    This has all been worked out superbly.

    May has pledged that, if Parliament votes down the deal, we'll simply leave under WTO rules.

    The Opposition and every MP that votes it down, will be committing political and economic suicide.

    Meanwhile, Nigel Farage can justifiably claim to be the most influential party in recent British history.

    Who would have thought it?

    A British Government fully committed to withdrawal from the EU and the Single Market.

    A few years ago, that was just UKIP.