Publications

Brexit: Losing control

24 April 2019
Andrew Duff (President of the Spinelli Group; Former Member of the European Parliament 1999-2014)



Andrew Duff argues that neither the EU nor the UK is now fully in control. Both are being badly destabilised by Brexit.

An accidental no deal is a live possibility. Unless the British have made real progress towards the exit by the time of the next EUCO in June, attitudes will harden — including those of Angela Merkel.  Talks between pro-European Tory ministers and the Labour frontbench have a 30% chance of success. If they fail, both leaders are expected to commit to more indicative votes in the Commons, this time rather more ‘meaningful’.   Mr Corbyn may want to delay his agreement until after the UK has been obliged by the EUCO to fight a mock election to the European Parliament. But the June EUCO is the next important deadline if British MEPs are to be stopped from taking their seats.

The proposal for a ‘confirmatory public vote’ to second guess the House of Commons is badly misconceived. It reduces the chance that the Commons can reach a solid majority on anything and would throw the nation into bitter division, enfeebling further the Westminster parliament and parties. Mr Tusk apart, the rest of the EU knows that another referendum will not resolve its British problem.

Download here