Posts Tagged ‘Conservatives’

House of Lords may move out of London to ‘reconnect’ with public

Tory plan a symbol of Boris Johnson’s aim to ‘level up’ rest of UK with capital

The government is considering moving the House of Lords outside London – potentially to York – as one of a range of options to “reconnect” politics with the public, the Conservative party chairman, James Cleverly, has confirmed.

Asked about the plan, which was reported in the Sunday Times, Cleverly said: “It’s one of a range of things that we are looking into.

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Nul points for Britain in the EU revision bong contest | Fintan O’Toole

Brexiters lament the fact that Big Ben will not ring for Brexit. But isn’t being thwarted just how they like it?

There will be no chimes at midnight. Anglican vicars have declined the suggestions of Brexiters that they should ring the bells of their churches to hail the beginning of the “golden age” that, as Boris Johnson has assured us, will be inaugurated by Brexit on 31 January. And Big Ben will not bong. The silence that Westminster’s great clock tower has maintained since its clapper was removed while restoration works are in progress will not be broken. Johnson claimed that he was “working up a plan so people can bung a bob for a Big Ben bong”. The plan turned out to be like all his other Brexit plans, which is to say nonexistent. So at this moment of destiny the prime minister will surely adapt John Donne. Ask not for whom the bell doesn’t toll. It doesn’t toll for thee.

The problem with a revolt against imaginary oppression is that you end up with imaginary freedom

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The Scottish standoff will not be decided at Westminster | Martin Kettle

Boris Johnson will have to back massive investment north of the border if he wants to hold back the tartan tide

The possible breakup of the country barely impinged on most British voters during the 2019 general election campaign. For the majority, Brexit was overwhelmingly the dominant issue. But Boris Johnson’s refusal this week to allow Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish government to hold a second independence referendum is a reminder of one of the Brexit election’s most important and umbilically linked consequences.

In Scotland things were, of course, different during the election. Yet even here it is important to recognise that Brexit, not the future of the union, was also at the front of the stage. In the Scottish National party’s 2019 manifesto, Sturgeon is pictured at a rostrum with a single slogan: Stop Brexit. Polling showed two Scottish voters in three thought Brexit a key issue, many more than chose any other subject. No one who followed the campaign in Scotland can seriously dispute that the SNP’s tremendous success on 12 December, when it took 48 of the 59 seats in Scotland, owed at least as much to its opposition to Brexit as to the issue of independence.

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Remainers aren’t going to vanish on 31 January. We fight on, sure of our cause | Will Hutton

Brexit is a Tory invention and pro-Europeans must still fight our EU exile

In less than three weeks, Britain leaves the EU. Those vast marches, the crowded public meetings, the indefatigable Remain campaigners, the great speeches, the parliamentary wheeler-dealing and principled resignations were all for nothing. The “get Brexit done” Tories, exploiting the least electable Labour leader ever, won the election and were handed an 80-seat majority. The die is cast.

For the political class, the issue has become toxic. Boris Johnson wants Brexit expunged from the lexicon so that the new normal is for Britain to be wholly outside the EU. Labour, flattened by its epic defeat, is agreed that to be pro-EU is political death. Remain Britain – half the population – has no champion.

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Brexit deal: EU may threaten ‘to block’ City’s access to its markets

Croatia’s prime minister, Andrej Plenković, hinted at move to ensure level playing field

The EU will be unashamedly “political” and block the City of London’s access to European markets if Boris Johnson tries to exempt the UK from its laws.

Croatia’s prime minister, Andrej Plenković, whose country is taking over the presidency of the EU, made the bloc’s intentions clear after the prime minister insisted the UK would not be aligned to the bloc’s regulations.

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Brace yourself: the next phase of Brexit is going to get messy | Mujtaba Rahman

With the clock ticking, a low-alignment deal with the EU now seems likely, but it comes with great risks

Boris Johnson’s honeymoon was always going to be short-lived. The immediate, unexpected, reason is the sudden escalation of tensions between the US and Iran. But it won’t be long before Brexit once again dominates the headlines.

With the UK set to leave the EU on 31 January, and both sides set to embark on trade negotiations shortly thereafter, the prime minister, his senior ministers and his key aides are keen to lower the temperature. “We want to see Brexit on the business pages, not the front pages,” says one ally.

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