It’s not over yet
I have spent the morning watching the debate in the House of Commons about the Brexit deal. It’s an education in Parliamentary procedure. This is because an amendment was laid down this morning by Oliver Letwin (an old thorn in the side?) which, if voted through, would delay Brexit further.
The law states (the Benn Act 2019) that if this were to happen the Prime Minister must, at 11 pm tonight, send a letter to the European Union to ask for an extension to Brexit, delaying it until 31st January 2020. This is well known to everyone except, apparently, the Prime Minister!
Mr Johnson is, of course, refusing to do this. He is supremely confident, believing that he can get the legislation done and dusted by his magic date – 31st October. This would seem highly unlikely, given it has to pass through both houses
There is now a cacophony of speculation, apparent messages from sources inside No 10 , comment from various experts, trying to work out what will happen next.
As predicted yesterday, it is the Democratic Unionist Party who have complained bitterly about the proposed deal which puts a border down the Irish Sea. This was always going to be a problem.
There is a sense that something big has happened today. The thing is that no one is quite sure what it means. All we know is that we have not advanced towards an end to this endless and exhausting process.
Exported from Medium on October 19, 2019.