Brexiteers urge PM to extend transition period and embrace Max Fac option: Brexit News for Thursday 10 May

Brexiteers urge PM to extend transition period and embrace Max Fac option: Brexit News for Thursday 10 May
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Brexiteers reportedly urge Theresa May to extend the transition period to end Cabinet deadlock over customs proposals…

Brexiteers suggested extending Britain’s transition period out of the EU in a bid to break Cabinet deadlock over customs. Theresa May’s ex-chief of staff Nick Timothy joined forces with two powerful allies of Michael Gove to urge the PM to back the “max fac” customs option instead of her cherished Customs Partnership. The “maximum facilitation” plan would use technology to monitor goods and borders – but critics say it will take too long to set up. Crucially the trio called for a extension to the exit phase away from Brussels to help her sell the u-turn ahead of a showdown next Tuesday. The PM is currently pushing for a “customs partnership” where the UK collects import tariffs on Brussels behalf — despite it being rejected six to five by her inner Brexit war committee last week. Mrs May plans to use a 90 minute meeting of her deadlocked 11 strong panel on Tuesday to railroad through a tweaked version of her complex system. – The Sun

If there is a compromise to be made, ministers might accept that “max fac” will take longer to be introduced than the current implementation timetable suggests. But to get its way with Brussels, and to convince Parliament that there is an alternative to a customs union, the Government needs to get on with it, choose “max fac” – and start making its case. – Nick Timothy for the Telegraph (£)

  • David Davis warns Remoaner MEPs over delays to new post-Brexit security partnership – Express
  • Here’s a customs union solution both Brexiteers and Remainers should be able to accept – Andrew Lilico for the Telegraph (£)

…as Gavin Williamson is told it would be ‘career suicide’ to change his mind and back the Customs Partnership…

Gavin Williamson has been warned that withdrawing his opposition to an EU customs partnership would be “career suicide” amid fears Theresa May will try to “bully” him into changing his mind. The Defence Secretary was one of two Remain-supporting ministers who swapped sides during a key Brexit meeting last week to help block Mrs May’s preferred option for a post-Brexit customs deal with Brussels. Mrs May has now postponed a meeting of her Brexit “war Cabinet” that had been scheduled for today as she tries to find ways to win over Mr Williamson and other ministers. – Telegraph (£)

  • Theresa May’s customs partnership would cost Britain £60 million a week – The Sun

…while Jeremy Corbyn targets May’s customs indecision at PMQs

If Downing Street needed any further warning sign of the mess that Theresa May’s Custom Partnership plan is, today she let Jeremy Corbyn run rings around her over it and clock up an extremely rare PMQs win. Given the Labour boss usually has a complete aversion to talking about all things Brexit, he appears to have caught the Prime Minister off guard with a withering opening belter, asking if she agreed with Boris that the complex tariff collecting plan was “crazy.”  – Harry Cole for The Sun

  • Prime Minister’s Questions: The key bits and the verdict – BBC News
  • Corbyn exposes May’s Brexit mess at PMQs – Isabel Hardman for The Spectator
  • Rarest of PMQs: Corbyn Wins, Speaker Cheered – Guido Fawkes

> Watch on BrexitCentral’s YouTube Channel: Brexit at PMQs

British Brexit negotiators warn EU its hardline stance on security will put people in danger

Brexit negotiators have warned the EU it will put its citizens at risk if it excludes Britain from the Europol crime agency and the European Arrest Warrant scheme for the speedy extradition of criminals. British officials said that for every criminal extradited to Britain under the EAW, eight suspects were transferred from the UK to an EU member state during talks in Brussels last Friday. More than 10,000 individuals have been extradited to face justice in the EU since 2004, they said, and last year Britain gave 6,000 pieces of intelligence to Europol Organised Crime projects, more than any other EU country. – Telegraph (£)

  • Brexit Secretary David Davis tells EU they have ‘more to lose’ if they delay talks over a new security partnership with the UK – The Sun
  • Don’t risk lives by blocking Galileo satellite role, David Davis tells EU – The Times (£)
  • Brexit ‘will force Airbus work on Galileo out of UK’ – BBC News
  • Brussels is playing games with European security. This is short-sighted and reckless – The Times (£) editorial

Leading Tory MPs call for a ‘complete and total overhaul’ of the House of Lords after its votes to thwart Brexit

The House of Lords must be reformed after its votes to thwart Brexit, leading Tory MPs said yesterday. Describing peers as out of control, they said the Upper House had gone too far with amendments wrecking the Government’s EU legislation. Iain Duncan Smith warned there had to be a ‘reckoning’ and a ‘complete and total overhaul’ of the Lords. The backlash was sparked by peers voting to keep Britain in the Single Market and to remove the fixed date for leaving the EU. They have now amended the Withdrawal Bill 14 times. – Daily Mail

  • Petition to abolish House of Lords hits 153,000 signatures – Express
  • Brexit wrecker’s EU handouts: Duke of Wellington pocketed farming subsidies – Express
  • It’s time to abolish the House of Lords – Diane James MEP for City A.M.

Labour MPs plot to defy Jeremy Corbyn and vote to keep Britain in the EU single market

Labour MPs are plotting to defy Jeremy Corbyn and vote to try and keep Britain in the EU single market. Yesterday’s defeat for Theresa May in the Lords triggered a vote in the lower chamber on a Norway-style deal with Brussels post-Brexit next month. But that set Mr Corbyn on a collision course with his own backbenchers with dozens set to revolt and defy his official policy, laying bare the massive divisions in Labour. The leftie leader has followed Theresa May in ruling out staying in the single market, as it would keep trade frictionless but would also mean keeping free movement. Last night’s debate in the House of Lords saw Labour peers join with Conservative rebels to back the amendment on the EU (withdrawal) bill by 247 to 218. – The Sun

Our great universities are struggling – but not because of Brexit

The Leave decision and our limping progress out of the EU are therefore emotionally troubling to many academics. But ‘Brexodus’, though much heralded, seems not to be happening. The Spectator (not without effort) has extracted statistics from most universities under Freedom of Information procedures. There are doubtless complexities behind the crude figures, yet the general pattern is clear: although noticeable numbers of academics from the EU left last year, a considerably greater number — 25 per cent greater — arrived. In our larger and more international universities — including Cambridge, Edinburgh, Leeds, the LSE, Queen Mary, Liverpool, Birmingham, Manchester — the trend is even more marked: the number arriving last year was nearly two-thirds higher than the number leaving .- Robert Tombs for The Spectator

  • Fears of ‘Brexodus’ of academics from Britain’s universities are ‘a myth’, figures show – Telegraph (£)
  • Fears of an EU student ‘Brexodus’ rubbished as figures show a quarter more arrived than left last year – The Sun

EU floats Hong Kong model for post-Brexit Northern Ireland

European diplomats have come up with a novel new argument in the Brexit negotiations: Northern Ireland should be the new Hong Kong. While the former British colony might appear to have little in common with the six counties in Northern Ireland, some high-ranking officials in Brussels believe the U.K.’s negotiated handover of Hong Kong sets a precedent for how Theresa May could cut a deal with the EU to solve the Irish border problem. According to the argument put forward by some in Brussels, former U.K. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher agreed a a “one state, two systems” approach to Hong Kong with Beijing during her premiership, so why couldn’t Northern Ireland be part of a different customs territory to the rest of the U.K. as proposed by the EU in its draft withdrawal agreement? – Politico

New EU investment rules should be delayed due to ‘alarming deficiencies’

The association representing German asset managers has called for a two year delay to the introduction of new pan-European rules covering financial products sold to retail investors after identifying “alarming deficiencies” in the new regulations. The German Investment Funds Association (BVI) said on Wednesday that the new rules, which are due to apply to mutual funds sold to retail investors in Germany by 2020, should be delayed until January 2022. – FT (£)

John Redwood: This is how to negotiate with Brussels

I have never understood why so many senior officials think we need to give in each time to the EU. At every Council I attended there was remorseless pressure to reach an agreement about some new law – always an extension of EU power – when there was no need for a new law and when many interested parties were against it or wanted it changed or watered down. We can see the dangers of the approach in the failed renegotiation conducted by David Cameron. Let us adopt the convention that the PM himself chose this route. We do not need to claim he simply followed civil service advice. What is clear is no-one senior in the civil service warned him that his negotiating stance would not work, or sought to get him to ask for more or to dig in more. If they had I am sure leaks would have told us about it. What he did he did with civil service agreement.  – John Redwood MP for The Commentator

Charles Moore: Advice for the current Duke of Wellington

Recently, the present (ninth) Duke of Wellington proposed the latest Remainer amendment in the House of Lords, which removes the date of leaving the EU from the Bill. He is the most politically engaged Wellington since the first one, so it was nice to see him. But I wish he had called to mind his great ancestor’s behaviour over the Corn Laws. Wellington strongly opposed repeal, but when Peel backed it in 1846, the Duke urged peers to submit. They could not afford to cut themselves off from the Commons, he told them. He thought the good government of the country more important than any particular Bill. – Charles Moore for The Spectator

Tom McTague: Brexit gloom descends amid UK Cabinet impasse

A pervasive gloom has descended over even the most upbeat of U.K. officials involved in the Brexit negotiations. “I’m not going to lie and say it’s great right now,” said one senior government aide, reflecting on the growing political turmoil facing the government. In the space of 24 hours, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has openly challenged the prime minister over her preferred post-Brexit customs plan while the House of Lords has sent another wrecking ball through the government’s negotiating aims. Another high-ranking official was more blunt: “God help us all!” At the heart of the growing pessimism in Whitehall: The political impasse over Britain’s preferred future customs relationship with the EU, which is threatening to tear down the government and the Brexit negotiations with it. – Tom McTague for Politico

Andrew Cadman: Sell the May and walk away

We have reached the endgame for both Britain and Theresa May. Caught between Brexit hardliners and the Tory voting electorate on one side and Remain Ultras on the other, whatever she does seems to guarantee a serious constitutional crisis through either reneging on Brexit or defeat in Parliament. Moreover, if we don’t confront the EU now, there will no time to prepare for exit on WTO terms. Once that deadline has passed, national humiliation of our country will be sealed as the EU wrings concession after concession. – Andrew Cadman for ConservativeWoman

Brexit in Brief

  • EU leaders are coming to Theresa May’s aid – she is their best hope for a smooth Brexit – Asa Bennett for the Telegraph (£)
  • The Customs Union Con – Stephen R. Macey for Medium
  • Trump, Iran, and Brexit – R. T. Howard for Reaction
  • For partisan advantage, Labour demands a worst-of-all-worlds Brexit – Daniel Hannan MEP for ConservativeHome
  • Brexit vote is bad for Theresa May — but it’s worse for Jeremy Corbyn – Henry Zeffman for The Times (£)
  • It is official – Brexit squabbling is damaging the economy – George Trefgarne for CapX
  • A customs compromise is now May’s only option – Christian May for City A.M.
  • Ireland and the (Linguistic) Battle of Brexit. – Dr Sean Walsh for CommentCentral
  • Brexit deals: How many will there be? – BBC News
  • Jaguar Land Rover sales spike in April despite impending job cuts – City A.M.
  • Deal to send illegal Indian immigrants back home could collapse after Indian PM refused to sign off on plans – The Sun
  • EU mulls retaliation to Trump’s Iran sanctions to protect business – City A.M.
  • Tory Brexiteers and Remainers finally settle their differences – Steerpike for The Spectator
  • ‘It’s about democracy!’ –  Bill Cash furious over Lords attempt to wreck Brexit – Express
  • Johnson in ‘conformity’ over undecided Brexit plan – Sky News
  • Crucial trade defences may not be ready by Brexit, MPs warn – Telegraph (£)
  • Lords claim Brexit could mean rising food bills and disruption to supplies – BBC News