Friday, 8 December 2017

Theresa May must now choose between the two factions in her Brexit Cabinet.

‘Sufficient progress’. Those words that Number 10 has been desperate to hear for months have now passed Jean-Claude Juncker’s lips.

After Monday’s epic false start, the government will just be relieved to have got there. If they had failed to secure ‘sufficient progress’ by Christmas it would have been hugely destabilising, both economically and politically. But looking at the text, it appears that agreement has been reached on the Irish border by a combination of fudge and kicking the can down the road. In the next phase, they are going to have to define what alignment really means: and that is bound to be controversial.

But this morning, Downing Street will be happy. The fact Michael Gove was out selling the deal on the Today Programme was a sign that the Cabinet’s Brexiteers can accept this deal for now; whether they can once all the terms are defined is another question. Indeed, Gove seemed to be suggesting that alignment was really equivalence which is not the meaning of the term that has been used in previous EU trade treaties.

By James Forsyth.
Full story at The Spector.

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