UK tells Brussels negotiators their Brexit bill sums do not add up.
|Guy Verhofstadt Brexit negotiator and Michel Barnier,|
There seems to be a stock phrase in the conservative party "Book of Standard Responses", when faced with a financial proposal with which they do not agree, or perhaps more importantly, they are incapable of understanding, that they should counter with, " the sums do not add up". It can be found on the next page to the other stock response, "of course the proposals are uncosted". We have heard these inane remarks from practically every conservative politician and media fellow traveller during the last (and probably every other) general election campaign, directed predominately at the Labour Party manifesto.The remarks were fatuous then as they are now, but this time the "book" has been whipped out to respond to Michel Binier and the other EU negotiators in connection with the "Brexit Bill".
|David Davis in typical pose|
David Davis has acknowledged the UK has “obligations” from its 44 years of EU membership, but is refusing to say what they are. Probably because he is as much in the dark, wandering around with the rest of this conservative government, trying to find answers to the problems of Brexit, which they do not and never did understand.
In the meantime, the EU negotiators become visibly more frustrated and even angry at the appalingly slow progress during the third round of talks. Where until recently Davis and the United Kingdom negotiators were viewed in Europe as comic and a bit of a laugh, as time moves on, they are now taken to be a collection of inept individuals without a script, sense of direction or any idea what they are actually seeking to achieve. Noboby ever believed that "the deal", for the exit of the United Kingdomfrom the EU was going to be an easy process, but this government has blundered forward without plan or objective. It would be better for this country and its people, for Europe and for all involved, if the bunch of incompetents currently in Brussels were to stand down, along with Theresa May and her government and make room for Keir Starmer and the Labour party to repair the damage caused already by the British negotiators and to agree a package with Europe which is acceptable to all parties.