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By the time May finally stepped down, I was concerned about the future of our parliamentary democracy. What a waste of well over three years.
As their conference opens this weekend, they are pondering claims that his ratings north of the border are dismal – and how to respond.
That’s variously for a customs union; for a custom arrangement plus the Single Market; for a second referendum, and for staying in the EU.
Those for included Eustace, Fallon and Percy. Those against, Dowden, Quin and Skidmore.
The Letwin plan has not exactly delivered the promised clarity. Instead, the Commons has again said what it does not want.
It would increase our power to control freedom of movement, plus our laws and finances – and deliver on the referendum result.
Longer extension, Customs Union, ‘Common Market 2.0’ and so on all have severe downsides.
Our party owns this crisis. If we honour the referendum we can shape the next decade. If we don’t then chaos – and Corbyn – await.
It would be dangerous for UK business and would leave both Leavers and Remainers dissatisfied. It would leave Britain subject to free movement.
The benefits of this simple approach are that we can settle this debate now rather than condemn our country to years more argument.
I voted for the Prime Minister’s deal today. But the Commons didn’t – and we now all need a positive alternative.
Where Farage, Johnson and Paterson once praised the Norway option, it is now denounced as apostasy.
It amounts to wishful thinking, not a workable, sustainable answer. And it’s not as easy to implement as some of its advocates make out.
It would be swift, fair and democratic solution to this sorry saga, allowing us to get back to meeting the challenges that helped fuelled the Brexit vote in the first place.
On almost every measure it offers a superior blueprint for leaving the EU than the Prime Minister’s Withdrawal Agreement.