EU head hopeful on deal after Boris Johnson stood firm on Brexit
Gone are the hopes of a British cave-in on Brexit. P.M. Boris Johnson has made it clear that there will be no re-vote on the U.K. leaving the E.U., that the will of the voters as expressed will be obeyed. And for good measure, President Trump has made it clear that the U.S. stands with its mother country and will be open to a free trade pact with Britain post-Brexit.
Faced with this unwavering stance, its pressure ineffective in blocking Brexit, the head of the E.U. now wants to make a deal. The U.K. Telegraph reports:
Jean-Claude Juncker has said the EU can agree a new Brexit deal by Oct 31 as it emerged Boris Johnson wants a "take it or leave it" offer from Brussels.
Amid increasing optimism in Downing Street that a deal is within reach, the European Commission president also said he was not "emotionally attached" to the Irish backstop and that it could be ditched.
The Irish backstop refers to the issue of the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic, currently a non-border, with no evidence of a barrier beyond a highway sign. The two economies are now highly integrated, with a constant stream of trucks traveling the superhighway connecting Dublin and Belfast paying no heed to the border.
Peter Foster of the Telegraph describes the ongoing talks about that border issue:
In 2017 Theresa May pledged that Brexit would not see a return to "infrastructure" at the Irish border or "related checks and controls". The Johnson government is now resiling from this position.
Technical non-papers handed to the European Commission are designed to demonstrate that so-called "alternative arrangements" can deliver a workable border in Ireland, even if it is not the "fully open" border demanded by the Irish government and the EU.
The British team believes that if Northern Ireland agrees to align with some EU animal health rules, then a combination of 'trusted trader' schemes, computerised customs declarations and political goodwill will enable the UK to leave the EU "whole and entire" on October 31 with an independent trade policy.
Boris Johnson in Parliament (photo credit: Mrs. Snrub).
There are many ways in which the deal could fail, but at least we know that the E.U. is not planning to make Britain and itself both suffer in order to teach the other E.U. members that like the Mafia, once you enter the E.U., you never leave and maintain your health.