Go Boris

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(Reuters) – Boris Johnson, the leading candidate to succeed Theresa May as Britain’s next prime minister, said he would withhold a previously agreed 39 billion pound Brexit payment until the European Union gives Britain better exit terms.

The EU has repeatedly said it will not reopen discussion of the Brexit transition deal it reached with May last year, which British lawmakers have rejected three times, prompting May to announce her resignation earlier this month. 

May stepped down as leader of the governing Conservatives on Friday. 

Johnson, a former foreign secretary in May’s cabinet, is popular with ordinary Conservative Party members, who will decide between the two candidates who come top in a series of votes by Conservative lawmakers over the coming weeks. 

“I always thought it was extraordinary that we should agree to write that entire cheque before having a final deal. In getting a good deal, money is a great solvent and a great lubricant,” Johnson told the Sunday Times. 

Britain is due to leave the EU on Oct. 31. If Parliament does not approve a deal – and the government does not ask the EU for another delay – there risks being major economic disruption from a disorderly departure. 

The 39 billion pounds represents outstanding British liabilities to the EU, which would be paid over a number of years according to the withdrawal agreement negotiated by May. 

Johnson also said border arrangements with Ireland should be settled only as part of a long-term agreement, rejecting a “backstop” which would avoid checks on Northern Ireland’s border but which Conservative lawmakers fear is a backdoor way of requiring Britain to continue to follow EU rules after Brexit. 

The EU has said guarantees to keep the border open between Ireland and Northern Ireland are an essential part of the transition agreement. 

Separately, one of Johnson’s rivals, environment minister Michael Gove, said he would scrap the value-added tax (VAT) levied on most goods and services and replace it with a lower U.S.-style sales tax. 

Gove told the Sunday Telegraph he wanted to use “the opportunity of life outside the EU to look to replace VAT with a lower, simpler sales tax, ensuring our business tax structure is the most competitive in the G20 and reducing marginal tax rates for the poorest families to reward work.” 

VAT is one of Britain’s main taxes, which the government expects to raise 137 billion pounds this year. 

Another leadership contender, Sajid Javid, said he was willing to pay Ireland hundreds of millions of pounds towards the cost of new border arrangements to facilitate a Brexit deal. 

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10 COMMENTS

  1. Barnier, from the EU, has come out and said May’s agreement cannot be renegotiated which just confirms who wrote the “Berlin” Agreement ( as some in the UK call it). I think that is good as it leaves whoever is the new PM no option but to go the “no deal” way which is what they should have done 2-3 years ago.
    Re Boris –he’ll be OK if he has a good strong Brexit Minister who can attend to the detail. I’m not convinced Boris is really that committed on Brexit but if he has a strong character behind him, pushing him in the right direct it could be OK. but I’m not holding my breath –like the US there appear to be a lot of “bought and sold” MPs in the UK Parliament.

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  2. Brexit may turn out to be the ‘poison chalice’ of whomever becomes the next British PM. It has to be Boris as he has what May lacked, the will to tell the EU to get stuffed and stick their £39,000,000,000 bill where the sun doesn’t shine. The British people will love him for it.

    17 Million F*ck Offs – Bretix
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jiUFPjulTW8

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  3. The House of Lords has stated that Britain does not owe and does not have to pay Brussels anything in order to leave. The 39 billion would seem to be a bung and it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that politicians will benefit from it by way of enhanced pensions or the like. The EU is so corrupt (their accounts have NEVER been properly audited don’t forget) that almost nothing surprises me about them.

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  4. I don’tthink Boris is the long term answer for Britain – but then again he is probably the pick of a very average bunch of options.

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  5. Looks like a divorce settlement and alimony to me, what an astronomical amount of ‘small change’ to be expected to have lying around. BOJO isn’t saying that they won’t pay it, I would want to be persuaded by a damn good reason why I did owe it.

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  6. Brexit – There is much misunderstanding in the UK and virtually none in NZ MSM so lets have a look at the actual facts. An elected MP is a representative so they may not deliver what all electors voted for in their member, that changed however when a binding referendum asked in or out the EU and the answer was out so MPs now became delegates to deliver, there was no requirement for a deal or no deal simply leave the EU 29/3/2019 at 11 pm. The problem was/is a majority of MPs did not want to exit the EU so they have used every dirty trick to delay and prevent an exit.
    The British people do not take kindly to being deceived however the deceit is wrapped in pretty paper and have become increasingly angry especially with those MPs they perceive as Remainers despite claiming pre election they wanted out.
    Theresa May has used a statutory instrument to extend the Brexit date, but is it legal? A stat inst can normally be used when primary legislation allows delegation of power- say to Scotland or Wales to enact legislation in their countries with the specific legislation, ie to transfer a contract for say certain Health Services by the NHS to be transferred to a private contractor. The Binding referendum contained no power of delegation so it appears the stat instr is Ultra Vires. Bill cash an old time Tory with integrity has launched a Court case to have the stat instr overturned, two retired Appeal Court Judges agree with Bill but the case is still to be heard and decided on.
    Now look at what happens if A the court determines the Stat inst is overturned & B by some Judicial Chicanery its valid.
    If A applies the UK left the EU on 29[3 so how you deal with the fact that for several months both the UK & EU have been operating on Laws\/regulations that are legally unenforceable and any verbal agreement to pay 39 Billion etc is void.
    If B applies then it questions the need for primary legislation or even the requirement for primary legislation to have a specific delegation clause. Secondly there will be at least 17.2 Million Brits that will make the Judiciaries lifespan in doubt unless they have plans for retirement on Pitcairn Island immediately
    In either case a new PM will have to deal with the consequences so lets examine some possibilities assuming Boris is PM and Rabb is Brexit secretary. The EU -Barnier Tusk & Junker have all stated many times there is no renegotiation possible but the make up of the EU Parliament has changed significantly following the success of more Nationalistic parties across Europe some of whom have openly stated they will substantially change the EU. Should a new UK PM taker a hard line and trade under WTO tariffs the EU overall will suffer most as they export far more to UK the vice versa (just like the US- China situation) so the costs would be borne by European citizens & business;s, I doubt there would much praise for local MP,s & MEP for becoming less competitive with reduced profits and increased unemployment. The UK may have a difficult short term issue sourcing outside the EU with some supply chains being severely disrupted.
    If the possibly reconfigured EU appoints a more conciliatory negotiating team (as should have happened in the first place) the UK could stay in the EU and its future be more secure & successful, I think this is as likely as Helen Clark becoming Queen of England. The stakes are high & short term much pain cost and disruption will be suffered on both sides so I suspect some sort of fudge will occur to lessen the major impacts.
    There are lessons for all Western type “Democracies”??!! Cindy are you listening, thought not.

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  7. Yet another Trump Triumph – Nasty Pelosi and her coven of vipers aided by a corrupt, Biased MSM and some Judges of dubious integrity and Judgement have prevented Donald from funding the Border Wall with Mexico. So Donald imposes a 5% Tariff effective immediately on all of Mexicos exports to the US, Mexican president panics and asks for an urgent meeting with Donald and on discovers the tariffs will increase every month by another 5% until Mexico stops the invasion of illegals across their border with the US. Result the Mexican President now faces the illegals with armed troops and the invasion stops, tariffs removed and the cost is Zero to the US and Mexico pays any local costs and best of all Pelosi is screwed over again. Now thats how its done Phil King of Kiwifail time to take lessons from Donald who advised Theresa May who ignored them and look at the result, seem familiar Phil?

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