FACT: If the UK doesn’t have a signed deal by April 2017, Brexit is in grave danger


The Slog spent most of yesterday trying to separate fact from fiction on the subject of realising Brexit from the EU.My conclusion is that it is meant to work for the Fatties from Brussels, Frankfurt and NATO….but not for We The People….and the so-called leaders of Brexit are collaborating in an attempt to hide a crucial deadline.

At the moment, Article 50 allows an EU Member State to secede from the Union by giving two years notice to the relevant authorities.

However, as from March 31st 2017 – a date just nine months away next weekend – Article 50 will be subject to the dreaded Qualified Majority Vote (QMV)…that is to say, we will have to persuade a total of 14 EU Member States to support our decision to leave.


If you came to this post after July 3rd, I must stress that an understanding of the full legal situation require you to read the further posting here on 29th June.



A number of seemingly random events over the last five days now appear to form some kind of pattern.

  • Cameron resigns but delays triggering Article 50
  • Back in 2010, the EU rule was we could leave if we applied Article 50, or repealed the European Communities Act 1972. These two caveats still apply, but only till 31st March 2017, after which date these two pieces of legislation will require a QMV.
  • Boris Johnson calls a press conference to say there is “no need for haste” on Article 50
  • Michael Gove endorses Johnson’s view
  • The VoteLeave group freezes UKIP/Nigel Farage out of discussions about the process of Brexit
  • The Blairite wing of Labour moves swiftly against Jeremy Corbyn, whom they know full well is in reality deeply suspicious of the EU
  • The EC wakes up to the game plan, and Merkel suggests UK be given “as much time as possible” to decide when to trigger Article 50.

One doesn’t have to be a rabbit-hole conspiracist to suspect a unified Establishment strategy to dilute and even negate what 52% of the electorate voted for five days ago.

Like 25 million other Britons, I didn’t vote Leave to then be disenfranchised by either a rerun Referendum based on spurious Remain charges, or an attempt by Tory Party putchists using March 2017 to say, “awfully sorry, there’s nothing we can do”.

We voted Leave to be free from the EU, not to help Boris get the Tory leadership, or Labour to get rid of JeremyCorbyn.

But there is another factor that the site Constitution Unit points out….which I turn have checked out – and they’re right:

Parliament has no formal say over whether or when Article 50 is invoked, as this lies within the royal prerogative powers that are exercised by government. Government’s powers in matters of foreign policy are very extensive, and parliament has veto rights only in respect of treaties.’

Article 50 is a clause, not a treaty: the UK Parliament cannot veto Lisbon in its entirety, because it didn’t pass it. CU also opines – and if you read the linked piece, you’ll see that so far they’ve shown great prescience – the critical path of the timelines involved doesn’t compute:

Both sides in the referendum campaign agree that this whole process would take several years, during which the UK would remain in the EU. The Remain side has always argued that the negotiations would be lengthy; the Leave side has now indicated that it would like to complete the process by 2020. Until the negotiation process is complete, the UK remains fully subject to its obligations under EU law.’

Spelling it out: we are subject to EU law over the next four years, but the Article 50 window of opportunity is just nine months. In those extra 3+ years, the EC could easily introduce and pass a directive changing the secession process further to make it impossible for the UK to leave. Even without that, the Commission can demand we get a QMV before Brexit will be allowed.

I’d love to be able to say, “But apart from that, Brexit is plain sailing”. But it isn’t. The negotations with the EU/EC/ECB and Eurogrope will take place on trade, administrative and legal levels. There will then be a deal on the table and Parliament would be required to approve it, because that would be a treaty. Westminster MPs are 4-1 in favour of staying in the EU. Under our somewhat haphazard and scribbled down mélange of usage and convention we call the Constitution, MPs would have every right to overturn last week’s referendum by turning the deal down and then drafting a reapplication for membership.

Remember: by, say, July 2020 most Brits will have forgotten all about the popular vote four years previously. Any and all kinds of events may well have happened to change everything. And the real push to Leave  this time around lay with older respondents (some of whom will be dead) while the Remaindeers tended to be young (and more of them will have the vote).

I do not want to set hares running here: we knew all this stuff beforehand, but the assumption that most of we Brexiteers made in voting Leave was that Downing Street would move swiftly to invoke Article 50. Indeed, that is what the usual anti-UK MEP loudmouths were insisting on by Saturday morning.

However, only M. Plat Ecran Hollande of France has so far allowed vindictive emotions to continue that pattern of thought:


But Hollande is isolated now in the Brussels-am-Berlin power corridor, and the French electorate detests him. What we see above is more evidence of the widening rift between Germany and France.

The disturbing mainstream developments that put the spotlight on timetables now is that Merkel intervened to advise slowing down, Schäuble stayed silent, and Draghi at the ECB says he is “very sad” about the decision….while on this side of La Manche, Borisgove & Ptnrs, VoteLeave (justified doubts about their motives now) are umming and awing and delaying, Farage is frozen out of the Brexit talks, while Cameron and Osborne have been at pains to stress that this process will take time and nothing will happen until the Tories have a new leader in September.

That’s just six months before Article 50 changes from being a quagmire into a heavily mined field of quicksand. It’s as if we had all the time in the world. But time is the one thing we haven’t got.

mesnipThe vote is over, and The People won. What’s becoming clear is that the élites within the Establishment are hesitating with a purpose. I think it’s time for both Nigel Farage and Kate Hoey to become vocal, and ask why this is happening….and make a much larger percentage of the electorate aware of the deadlines.

The follow-up to this piece with further evidence is here