Brexit and political turmoil

 

Sir, – A second Brexit referendum would obviously require concerted and bipartisan support across the divide in the House of Commons which, unfortunately in my view, it will never receive.

The incentive within the UK’s main political parties simply does not exist for a particular reason of self-interest that has, conveniently for them at least, disappeared “in the ether” to a degree, particularly given the constant white noise surrounding the issue and headline-grabbing vitriolic exchanges between prominent Remainers and Brexiteers.

As many of your readers are no doubt aware, on March 29th, 2019, all EU law currently on the UK’s statute books will remain in place and will continue to govern the UK legislature. In accordance with the provisions of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (commonly known as the “Great Repeal Bill“), an Act of Parliament that provides for repealing the European Communities Act 1972 over a protracted period of time, EU laws with be replaced with new laws that are more applicable and more properly reflect the requirements of a modern post-Brexit UK.

It logically follows that the political party in power, with a majority in the House of Commons, will be in a position to radically dictate practically every aspect of the UK’s future direction for decades.

For both the Tories and Labour, this represents a tantalising, once in a lifetime opportunity not to be left unexploited. If this requires a hard Brexit, then so be it.

If that were not enough, the current Tory-led UK government has openly stated that not all of this can be done through the Great Repeal Bill, so it plans to create powers to, verbatim, “correct the statute book where necessary” without full parliamentary scrutiny. This will be achieved by utilising the Statute of Proclamations 1539, or the “Henry VII Powers”, which grants the power to legislate by proclamation.

It is clearly evident that the manner of Brexit many voters opted for in June 2016 cannot be delivered and it makes flawless sense to hold a second referendum on the UK’s future relationship with the EU. It is a decision of great magnitude that deserves this level of consideration. However, this concession to logic would risk endangering the powers attainable by the Great Repeal Bill and future ancillary Bills to the party in a position to enact them, thereby dictating the UK’s future for generations

Amongst the political classes, Brexit has mutated from an initial concept of sovereignty into a unique opportunity, which has transcended the economic and social prerogatives of the very citizens that voted for it and represents an unparalleled dereliction of duty. – Yours, etc,

ALLAN SWEENEY,

Rathfarnham,

Dublin 14.

Sir,– After the British cabinet backing of a draft withdrawal agreement with the EU, it appears the UK is getting closer to what it does not want and getting further away from what the people voted for in the referendum. What can possibly go wrong? – Yours, etc,

DERMOT O’ROURKE,

Lucan,

Co Dublin.

Sir, – The DUP acts as though it would be an unprecedented thing for its “precious” union to be broken up. There is of course a precedent, though it’s one they probably don’t like to acknowledge: the Irish Republic. – Yours, etc,

BRIAN AHERN,

Clonsilla,

Dublin 15,

Sir, – If Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg hate the Brexit deal, it must be good. – Yours, etc,

DAVID MURNANE,

Dunshaughlin,

Co Meath.

Sir, – Note to Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg: empty vassals make the most noise. – Yours, etc,

B ROBINSON,

Daingean,

Co Offaly.

Sir, – During the last general election campaign in the United Kingdom, Theresa May asked the electorate for a mandate to make Britain “strong and stable”.

If the hardline Brexiteers get their way, the rich will indeed be strong but the poor will live in stables. – Yours, etc,

NUALA DELANEY,

Killiney,

Co Dublin.

Sir, – Northern Ireland is tiny. Do we honestly think we have any input into the “rules” of anything? We’re about as powerful as Manchester City Council. People need to grow up.

I understand the constitutional concerns and the perfectly reasonable unionist annoyance at Ireland’s recent rather inflexible and unimaginative (in my view) attitude to all this.

Northern Ireland could have unfettered access to both the UK and EU single markets. We were also recently given the devolved power over our own corporate tax rates, again uniquely in the UK. So my view is that we should shut up and start hustling.

Any unionist leader with any vision or gumption would seize this situation with both hands as an opportunity to make Northern Ireland a roaring economic success story – surely the most effective way to protect our “precious Union”?

If I were a Scot, I’d be feeling more than a little put out. If I were running a big Irish or British export business, I’d be browsing the internet for office space in Belfast.

Only the DUP could see a golden egg, shoot the goose and make an omelette with the egg.

It is a tragedy that the business community here has been left with only the DUP to speak for us. Many unionists, like myself, simply want to get on with growing our businesses and making a success of Northern Ireland for everyone here.

It’s a pity that the DUP should so conspicuously let us down with their overreaching sense of entitlement. – Yours, etc,

BRETT TEMPLETON,

Holywood,

Co Down.