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Varadkar to discuss possibility of Northern Ireland-only backstop with Johnson
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said that he will discuss the possibility of a Northern Ireland-only backstop with the British prime minister Boris Johnson when he comes to Dublin for the first meeting between the two on Monday morning.

While keen to emphasise that negotiations on Brexit can only take place between the UK Government and the EU taskforce, Mr Varadkar told journalists at Dublin Port on Sunday that he was willing to see if there was common ground on a "Northern Ireland specific" solution, something which has been raised by Mr Johnson in recent days.


Mr Varadkar said that he will discuss the possibility of a Northern Ireland-only backstop as a solution to the Brexit stalemate with Mr Johnson, but disputed that there was any significant progress being made in talks between the EU and the UK, as Mr Johnson and several of his ministers have claimed.

"If that's what being said that's a very optimistic assessment of where we stand," he said. "I don't think it would be shared by any of the other 27 member governments."

"I do though look forward to meeting Prime Minister Johnson tomorrow, I don't expect any big breakthroughs but I do think it's an opportunity for us to establish a relationship, to see what common ground might exist because I do believe that both governments, and all governments, do want there to be a deal and also to talk about Northern Ireland where we've a shared desire to have the institutions up and running again."

Seeing no EU heads of government are prepared to go to Downing St., Johnson has had to bite the bullet and travel to meet the leader of a minor EU member state. No doubt there will be some thumping of tables, but the Irish government has laid out their requirements very clearly, to the chagrin of the DUP who are absolutely opposed to N. Ireland remaining in "an economic zone" with the Republic despite the fact that many people think that could give them the best of both worlds, access to both the Single and UK markets.

Losing the DUP's 10 MPs support would be the least of Boris' problems at this stage - he is down over 20 MPs as it is - but a N. Ireland only backstop would give him the opportunity to come up with a deal which doesn't tie Great Britain to the EU Market and Customs regulations indefinitely.

It is doubtful enough Labour MPs would vote for any deal Boris could come up with at this stage but they might support putting Boris' deal to the people in a referendum where the other choice is Remain. The Brexit party would go apocalyptic as they favour no deal whatsoever, but do they really care about N. Ireland?

This is Boris' last chance of surviving as Prime Minister...

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by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Sep 8th, 2019 at 07:43:25 PM EST
Yet here you are waiting for EU Council Judgment Day.

There is only one Withdrawal Agreement. That "deal" already stipulates GFA open border (persons) and (customs) cooperation between IE and UK ("NI"): The GFA has no period limit, AFAIK, therefore another colossal British  malaprop, "backstop," is timeless until vacated by terms of that treaty.

Nothing about UK politics has changed, not even the false dichotomies of "union" borders or government and legislature, manufactured by Tories in memoriam to alienate its domestic constituencies.


Regardless of WA ratification, change of PMs, UK voluntary or involuntary separation from the TEU 31 Oct or thereafter Johnson presents no

opportunity to come up with a deal which doesn't tie Great Britain to the EU Market and Customs regulations indefinitely.
no "face saving"--was it?--gesture of reconciliation with either equally psychotic conservatives and manqué opposition MPs who rejected A.50 revoke on a proverbial silver platter, rejected a snap parliamentary election.

I weep for climate "crisis" activists, sometimes.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Sep 8th, 2019 at 08:50:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have no doubt that the EU Council would sign for May's accord with a NI-only backstop, and Great Britain outside the customs union.

It's indeed Boris's only chance to remain as PM... But only in the interim, until the early election.

Because he can not recover a majority in the House of Commons. Even if he offered the whip to the expelled Tories (and even if they agreed to be whipped by him again, which is a long shot), he won't have the DUP.

So, no confidence, and new elections after the Brexit transition begins, 31st October?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Sep 9th, 2019 at 08:28:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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