Campaigns Archive 2020

  • Us Remainers should get our priorities right

    July 06, 2020

    Over twenty years ago, William Hague, on becoming the first openly Eurosceptic Tory leader, argued that the UK should be in Europe, but not be ruled by it. What Hague meant by ‘in Europe’ was, as far as I recall, never defined, but in the context of the UK formally leaving the EU, the only cause left for Remainers’ is to ensure that the UK remains ‘in Europe’. 

  • One rule for Johnson gang, another for everyone else

    July 06, 2020

    Just over four years ago I met Stanley Johnson at a book launch. In my write up of the encounter, I described him as the “the charming father of boorish Boris, the Brexiteer.”

    We got on rather well after I told him I worked for a Labour MP who was playing a leading role in the Remain campaign. 

    “It’s up to you in the Labour Party to save us,” he told me. I was too polite to reply: “From your son, you mean?”

  • It's Not Over Yet - The Last Agonies of Brexit

    June 30, 2020

    We may be gingerly moving out of lockdown, but the toxic combination of incompetence and arrogance displayed by this Tory government over the past three months has irreparably shattered our country’s reputation for sound governance and pragmatism. Ironically, the more the Tories bang on about Global Britain, the more they come across to the outside world as weirdly introverted and out of touch with contemporary reality. The EU increasingly views Boris Johnson as an unreliable partner - given his track record, you can see their point. 

  • How Putin Helped Johnson Win Brexit and No 10

    June 30, 2020

    There is a small ticking time-bomb that keeps British Prime Minister Boris Johnson more awake than the crying of his new baby boy, Wilfrid.

  • Boris Bluster Must Be Exposed

    June 22, 2020

    The government has announced that despite the delays caused by COVID-19 it will refuse to extend the Brexit transition period beyond this year, whatever the consequences. This makes the chances of a no-deal Brexit all the more likely, with Britain's participation in the single market and customs union (and much else) ending overnight, with no replacement measures in place. 

  • No Deal Brexit Threatens Child Refugees

    June 22, 2020

    No one wants to see boats of desperate refugees trying to cross the English Channel. It is dangerous and life-threatening for those who attempt it and puts others at risk as they attempt to save them. It is illegal, undermines a sense of law and order and it further incites anti-refugee sentiment. But this is what happens when the state fails and you don’t put in place a fair and humane refugee system or work in constructive partnership with our neighbours to help desperate people escape the threat to their lives.

  • White Flag Over Cliffs of Dover

    June 14, 2020

    The extraordinary announcement by Michael Gove that Johnson is reversing the line that "taking back control" from Europe meant much tighter border controls is not just a capitulation to EU demands, but is also a sign that the hard Brexit camp in government may not be as hard as previously thought.

  • Fish Pie in the Sky: Brexit hopes of UK fishing likely to be dashed

    June 07, 2020

    The 12,000 people who crew the UK’s fishing fleet have been encouraged to believe that Brexit and Britain’s departure from the Common Fisheries Policy will transform their fortunes. They have been promised that an entirely national policy will give them exclusive rights to fish in the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone and that they will still be able to export duty-free to the rest of Europe.

  • No Deal Brexit Must Be Ruled Out

    June 07, 2020

    In less than a month's time the UK could be committing itself to leaving the EU on December 31st with no deal, no extension and no contingency plan. While the country, and indeed the globe, is distracted by the immediate need to tackle coronavirus, the UK government is sleep-walking towards a disastrous cliff edge that could compound the damage to the UK’s economy that the months of lockdown have already inflicted.

  • Boris Johnson Digs In Over Dominic Cummings Affair and Brexit

    May 30, 2020

    Dominic Cummings, die-hard Brexiteer and UK sovereignty fetishist, is now part of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s problems — and no longer a solution. Like all of Britain, most of Europe has been agog watching the Dominic Cummings affair. It was even the strongest trending topic on Twitter in France.