The statement comes after the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier stated, that removing said backstop would be unacceptable, despite the desires of hard-line eurosceptics in the House of Commons. So with this in mind; would an attempt to salvage a divorce bill with Brussels by new British Prime Minister Boris Johnson simply be a waste of time?
Sputnik spoke with Brexit Party organiser Pete Durnell for more…
Sputnik: Would re-negotiating aspects of Theresa May’s Brexit deal be worthwhile?
Pete Durnell: I’m not surprised the ERG are saying what they are saying, because there’s an awful lot wrong with that withdrawal bill, not just with the backstop, we’re paying thirty-nine billion for effectively nothing in return, the veto the EU will have on us leaving or withdrawing from that agreement, the fact that we’ll continue to accept all their new directives and remain under the ECJ, etcetera etcetera.
I think the EU is always going to play hardball; we know that they’ve done that in the past, but until now we haven’t even really played softball, we’ve just rolled over and perhaps even let the ball hit us.
Basically the German economy is in serious trouble, their output is in freefall and the last thing they need is tariffs on everything to do with UK trade, so essentially if we are serious; and they believe we are serious about no deal, they will talk, they will move, and we will get a much better deal.
Sputnik: Do you think the EU would grant another extension of Article Fifty to avoid a no-deal Brexit? And would a no-deal Brexit be as bad as many claim?
Pete Durnell: I’m pretty sure Ursula von der Leyen; the new most powerful President in the EU has already said that the UK can have another extension, so I don’t think there’s too much doubt about that. The question would be if they would allow us to just have that extension without any preconditions, because I suspect that they would say that you could only have it if there was a second Brexit referendum attached, or at least that’s what they would try.
They want more of Britain’s money and more time to try and overturn Brexit, so they are always going to allow the UK an extension one way or another.
I personally don’t believe that a no-deal Brexit or WTO rule Brexit will be anything like as bad as the predictions, as they tend to be for sort of ten or twenty years ahead; but bluntly I don’t think it would last more than a few weeks.
It’s going to be in everybody’s interest to put a temporary deal into place, whilst we work out a proper free trade agreement, so I just think that both sides are going to want to do that and it will happen, so there won’t be twenty years of no deal, it’ll be a few weeks.
Sputnik: If Boris Johnson does not deliver Brexit by Halloween; would he lose a vote of no confidence and possibly a general election?
Pete Durnell: I don’t think there’s much doubt that at some point he’s going to lose a no-confidence vote before the next scheduled election.
I think that if he doesn’t deliver Brexit by Halloween; he knows, and pretty much everyone knows that he’s in serious trouble, I think there would be a no-confidence vote and that he would lose it, and essentially if he doesn’t then do a deal with the Brexit Party the Conservatives would almost certainly not be in government afterwards.
I don’t think he’ll wait until that point when it’s obvious that all of his promises have fallen through, I think he’ll actually try and take advantage of his honeymoon period, there’s a lot of goodwill amongst Brexiteers at the moment in terms of what he’s saying, and what he wants to do, so he’s not going to wait until it becomes clear that he can’t do it.
He will essentially call a general election on his own; but he can’t do that entirely on his own back because of the fixed term parliament act, but what he will do is get an agreement from Labour; who are going to want a general election anyway, and they’ll vote for it.
There will be a general election, and I think it will be sooner than perhaps many people anticipate because Boris Johnson wants to take advantage of that honeymoon period.
The views expressed in this article are solely those of Pete Durnell and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.