Wednesday 4 July 2018 - People's Vote

Wednesday 4 July 2018

Morning briefing: Chequers row - Fisheries - Electoral Commission

England have won a penalty shootout at the World Cup. If that doesn't convince you that anything is possible - including winning the battle for a People's Vote - what will?

While goalkeeper Jordan Pickford might be the hero of the hour, manager Gareth Southgate comes a close second. Setting aside his impeccable taste in waistcoats, the atmosphere of team unity he’s created is truly impressive.

Contrast Theresa May, who faces an “almighty row” with Brexiters in her Cabinet who are worried they will be forced to accept all sorts of things they dislike when they meet at Chequers on Friday. The alarm that a sell-out is on its way is being sounded in the Brexiters’ media organs: The Telegraph, The Mail and The Sun.

You can see why they are worried. The ITV’s Robert Peston has a long Facebook post setting out what he has been told about the prime minister’s new customs model. He says it would see the UK “collect duties on imports at the rate of the European Union’s common customs tariff” in an “asymmetric agreement” where the EU would not collect customs duties on behalf of the UK. Peston also says the prime minister will push for “alignment of product standards, for goods and agricultural products.”

Of course, it’s one thing for the Cabinet to thrash out what it wants. It’s quite another to reach an agreement with the EU. Peston notes that, if it was left to the European Commission, the plan would be “dead at birth” because it is insisting we can’t have free movement of goods without free movement of people. But he says Downing Street is betting that the leaders of some of the EU27 will be more accommodating than the European Commission.

Maybe. But May will probably have to make at least two more concessions to get a deal: pay into the EU budget; and follow its rules on competition, social, environmental and maybe even tax policy so we can’t unfairly undercut EU producers. And remember, our prosperity would still be badly damaged because we wouldn’t get free movement of services, that account for four fifths of our economy.

It’s not just Brexiters that wouldn’t like this. Patriotic pro-Europeans wouldn’t like it either. All the more reason for a People’s Vote on the final deal.

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Quote of the day

"At the very heart of the cabinet are 'hard Brexit' zealots who are hell-bent on crashing the UK out of the single market and customs union without any plan to protect trade, investment and jobs."

      - Sadiq Khan warns Brexiters not to put "ideological obsession" ahead of the national interest.


Video of the day

WATCH: As new facts come to light about the costs of Brexit, people are entitled to demand a People's Vote on the final deal if it doesn't match up to what was promised.


INFACTS IS HIRING A VIDEO AND MULTIMEDIA JOURNALIST! THINK YOU'VE GOT THE SKILLS TO BUST THOSE BREXIT MYTHS? KNOW SOMEONE WHO DOES? APPLY HERE!


Country outside London set to lose most

Brexit is set to lighten the wallets of people outside of London the most, with Northern Ireland, Wales and the North-East set to be hit particularly hard, the Guardian reports. The Institute for Public Policy argues that these regions are particularly vulnerable due to their reliance on production exported to the EU, such as cars and lamb. Meanwhile, as the cost of food is set to go up, poorer families will be hit across the country.


Tweet of the day


Fishy business

The government is set to publish a white paper on future fisheries policy post-Brexit, which will move to a “fairer allocation” of catch based on the distribution of fish stocks. The EU, unsurprisingly, prefers the status quo. As British fishermen export a significant chunk of their catch to the EU, if access to the EU market depended on continued access for EU fishermen to our waters, we’d face a tricky choice.


Graphic of the day:

SHARE: Unite the Union back a People's Vote as an option


Vote Leave accused of acting unlawfully

The official Brexit campaign has come up with what looks like a spoiler tactic to deflect an upcoming report from the Electoral Commission which is expected to say it broke the law during the referendum. Instead of waiting for the regulator to publish the result of its investigation, Vote Leave has briefed the BBC and The Telegraph about its 500-page response. The watchdog said: "The unusual step taken by Vote Leave in sharing its views on the Electoral Commission's initial findings does not affect the process set out in law." Best to wait for the full report to be published than jump to conclusions based on Vote Leave’s selective briefings.


More Brexit news…

Unite endorses 'possibility' of 'popular vote' on Brexit deal (FT)
EU weighs international talks on cutting car tariffs (FT)
UK companies prepare EU bases in lead up to Brexit (FT)
Austria to bar migrants after Merkel gives ground (Times)

Top Brexit comment

Finkelstein: Rees-Mogg's Brexit history lesson is bunkum (Times)

Looking forward...

Today, Wednesday 04 July

09:15 David Davis and Oliver Robbins appear at Department for Exiting the European Union Committee
09:30 ONS Release (Economic Well-being: January to March 2018)
10:00 International Trade committee discuss Brexit and the Irish Border
12:00 Prime Minister's Questions
14:15 Michael Gove quizzed by European scrutiny committee on implications of Brexit for UK fishing industry

Tomorrow, Thursday 05 July

- 70th Anniversary of the NHS
10:00 Lords EU External Affairs Committee discuss post-Brexit customs
10:15 Lords EU Internal Market Committee discuss impact on small business