Newton Emerson: Sea border is different to Brexit backstop

Unionists see even mildest version of sea border as constitutional slippery slope

UK prime minister Theresa May: selling a sea border looks hopeless now, inseparable from “dividing our country in two”, to quote Ms May after the disastrous Salzburg summit. Photograph: Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg

UK prime minister Theresa May: selling a sea border looks hopeless now, inseparable from “dividing our country in two”, to quote Ms May after the disastrous Salzburg summit. Photograph: Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg

Is there any way to de-dramatise the concept of a sea border so that unionists might accept it?

It would be enormously helpful if there was. Checks across the Irish Sea are by far the easiest way to avoid a hard border under almost every conceivable Brexit scenario.

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