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Hello and welcome to
the Daily Politics.
Theresa May secures a breakthrough
in Brexit, after striking
a last-minute deal with the EU
to move talks on to the next phase.
Getting to this point has required
give and take on both sides,
and I believe that the joint report
being published is in the best
interests of the whole of the UK.
I very much welcome the prospect
of moving ahead to the next phase.
Brussels describes the deal
as a "personal victory"
for the Prime Minister.
She admits she's had a hard week
after earlier attempts at reaching
There's been progress
on major sticking points
including the Irish border -
but if you thought that was
difficult, negotiators will now move
onto the even trickier business
of trying to agree
a post-Brexit trade deal.
All that in the next hour -
and with me for all of it,
two journalists with views on Brexit
about as wide as
the English Channel.
It's the Guardian's Polly Toynbee,
and Camilla Tominey
from the Sunday Express.
Perhaps we can build
a few bridges today -
or even a Channel Tunnel.
So, Theresa May landed in Brussels
shortly before 6am this morning
to finalise a new draft agreement
between Britain and the EU,
having negotiated by phone
into the early hours with key
players including the leader
of Northern Ireland's
Democratic Unionist Party,
At a joint press conference
with the Prime Minister this
morning, European Commission
President Jean-Claude Juncker said
he is satisfied that the fabled
"sufficient progress" has now been
made, meaning talks
can move on to trade
and transition in the new year.
Barring any last-minute upsets -
and who in all of this
would entirely rule one out?
- the deal should be signed off
at next week's meeting
of European leaders.
We've been working extremely hard
this week and, as you've all seen,
it hasn't been easy for either side.
When we met on Monday,
we said a deal was within reach.
What we have arrived at today
represents a significant improvement
and I'm grateful to the negotiating
teams, led by David Davis and Michel
Barnier, for their efforts.
Getting to this point has required
give and take on both sides
and I believe that the joint report
being published is in the best
interests of the UK.
I very much welcome the prospect
of moving ahead to the next phase
to talk about trade and security
and to discuss the positive
and ambitious future relationship
that is in all of our interests.
On the basis of the mandate
which was given to me
by the European Council,
the commission has just formally
decided to recommend
to the European Council that
sufficient progress has now
been made on the strict
terms of the divorce.
While being satisfied
with today's agreement,
which is obviously the personal
success of Prime Minister Theresa
May, let us remember that the most
difficult challenge is still ahead.
We all know that breaking up is hard
but breaking up and building
a new relation is much harder.
Camilla, can Theresa May rightly
claim personal success for this?
Well, they say a week is a long time
in politics and if you compare where
she is now to where she was at least
48 hours ago, where I think senior
Brexiteers were ready to perhaps be
a little bit more disloyal than they
have been, being very vehement about
the fact she might have been rolling
over and it was going on the wrong
direction, you had Jacob Rees-Mogg
talking about the pain killing of
her red lines and Peter Bone making
a joke about did she need him to
accompany her out there to secure
the negotiations, and the DUP
looking to secure a better future in
terms of Brexiteers, I think things
have changed and the fact she has
been personally congratulated by
Donald Tusk as well as by
Jean-Claude Juncker, who said it was
a personal victory for her, it takes
into a much better position this
week and that she may have been.
you think the people you just
mentioned, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Peter
Bone amber lights, are on-board?
far, Leave Means Leave have released
a statement and they're present all
these Brexiteers. We have heard from
Farage and others who seem to be on
the more extremist and a Brexit who
are not going to be happy, just as
those on the extremist end of any
debate are often not happy with what
seems to be a compromise. I think
the EU has met us a long way when it
comes to ECJ, I think there have
been some concessions made by this
side. I think so-called pragmatic
Brexiteers will be saying to
themselves, it is not perfect but is
better than where we thought we were
earlier in the week and equally, I
think you have a situation where
people are accepting that in a
compromised series of negotiations,
nobody is going to be 100% happy and
if anyone was 100% tabby, that would
mean the negotiations were too far
waited in one way or the other.
has been a Herculean task to get all
the different strands on-board - the
Irish government and the EU are on
the same side, you've got the DUP,
both wings of the Conservative
Party, and she has managed it.
have all managed it. The Europeans
have been very keen... The praise
they have lavished on her, to keep
her there because they are afraid
they could get something much worse
if she is unseated and this week it
looked as if the high Brexiteers
might have pushed her off her feet
but in the end, all they have done
is kick the can down the road. We
know we have a guarantee of a soft
border, we have this alignment right
across the whole European Union...
If the trade deal isn't actually
secured. It is the fallback option,
full alignment for the whole of the
Yes, but you can't have both
things. If you have alignment, it
has to be near as dammit in the
customs union rules.
But I think...
Wait a minute. It has got to be very
close. The French and everybody else
have said you can't have an open
border, you can't have a soft
border, unless you have almost
identical trading agreements, in
which case most of the Remainers
will be mostly happy because they
know we are going to leave the EU
anyway. What they are really worried
about is divorcing ourselves from
the single market and the customs
union and if, in effect, we are more
or less staying in it to keep the
border open, then they're happy, but
when that becomes clear the other
lot won't be, the Peter Bone we're
and Jacob Rees-Moggs.
We are going
to pick over it like a dog with a
vote later in the programme. -- dog
with a bone.
So, the deal came before dawn,
allowing Theresa May
and her negotiating partners
in Brussels a chance to smile over
croissants and orange juice.
But what exactly did they agree?
The report makes the commitment
that there will be no hard
border between the UK
and the Republic of Ireland.
It is unclear how this will be
achieved but in the absence
of agreement on the issue
between the EU and UK
during trade negotiations,
it says the UK will maintain "full
alignment" with EU rules, in areas
pertaining to Northern Ireland.
The Good Friday Agreement
and the Common Travel
Area will be upheld.
EU citizens living in
the UK and vice versa
will have their rights to live,
work and study protected.
UK courts will preside over
enforcing the rights of EU citizens
in Britain but can refer unclear
cases to "ultimate arbiter of Union
law" the European Court
of Justice for eight years
after the UK's withdrawal.
In terms of the money,
no specific figure is mentioned
But the two parties have agreed a
formula to calculate the financial
The UK has made a number
of financial commitments,
including paying into the EU
budget as usual in 2019/20
as well as its pension
The report will have to be agreed
upon by the European Council summit
next Thursday and Friday, before
negotiations about the UK's future
relationship with the EU can start.
We're joined now from Brussels
by our correspondent Kevin Connolly.
Everybody talks about give and take.
Who has given more and who has taken
The Europeans are going to
feel that they have got an awful lot
of what they wanted out of the
British, for example the idea that
Britain didn't owe the European
Union a penny has been quietly
shelved. That is the most
spectacular example of what Brussels
would see as the shifting of ground
on the British side. The UK can
point to some areas where the
European Union has rowed back. At
one point, those European agencies
which are being moved from London to
other European cities as a result of
Brexit, the EU was going to ask for
the British side to pay all the
costs of that removal process. That
seems to have gone away. So Britain
can point to concessions and I think
it is critical for Theresa May that
this doesn't look like a process
where Britain is a supplicant or
where it is trying to pass a series
of tests set by the European Union
but rather that it is a genuine
negotiation. I think there is enough
on both sides that that argument can
be plausibly made but there is no
doubt that the European Union has an
enormous amount of power in this
relationship, because the great
prize for Theresa May, the thing we
can now start. About, is that trade
negotiation. I will not miss the
phrase sufficient progress because
we have been saying a daily for nine
months sufficient progress has now
been made and people are Donald Tusk
and Michel Barnier are warning that
the next bit is the really hard bit.
It took the EU seven years to
negotiate a free trade agreement
with friendly, liberal, reasonable
Canada, so it is not going to be
easy but at least it is now under
way and the timetable has been stuck
two and a deadline has been met, so
what looked at the start of this
week, frankly, like a wobbly,
uncertain process now looks a bit
more predictable from the Brussels
point of view so there is a palpable
sense of relief here this morning.
And we're joined now by the Brexit
minister Steve Baker.
It hasn't been easy reaching this
point. If we just look at this week,
the Prime Minister thought she had
an agreement on Monday and then the
DUP withdrew support it up last
night, she had to fly to Brussels on
in the middle of the night it
seemed, in order to get that
agreement are gone to the next
phase. How do you think the next bit
is going to go?
I think it is going
to be an interesting town to be in
politics and public policy.
much we know.
I think we're going to
accelerate our capacity in the
negotiations and of future
relationship in the paper and I
would expect to see an increase in
progress that we make.
Let's turn to
the limitation period. Have the EU
agreed to want and how long would it
We need to get onto the future
relationship negotiations before a
negotiation period so that is
something we can do at the council.
But there is going to be an
That is the
policy and I am glad it is. We
expected to be two years because the
Prime Minister has explained, it is
about how long we need to do the
practical things which lead to the
best possible exit.
It could be
longer than two years?
to be two years.
period, the UK will stay in the
single market on the customs union
and the EU guidelines for the future
relationship so that.
What the Prime
Minister explained the France speech
is that we would continue in the
plantation period within the
framework of current de Leeuw law.
But upon what is not often be made
here is that in order to conclude
that agreement would need to be
outside the treaties, which is a
matter of EU law. So the trick is to
leave the sphere of treaty law and
be outside the EU without ending on
the practical arrangements so we
have that period of stability and
I have the council
guidelines in front of me and they
are talking about transitional
arrangements and it says, "In order
to ensure a level playing field
based on the same rules applied
throughout the single market,
changes to the act adopted by EU
institutions and bodies will have to
apply both in the UK and the EU. All
existing union regulatory budgetary,
supervisory, judiciary and
enforcement instruments will also
apply". Do you agree?
comment on leaked documents.
leaked but it is the general
secretariat of the council, the
European Council draft guidelines.
It is extremely clear.
just read out is consistent with
what the Prime Minister has
previously said and is also
consistent with what the EU has
previously said. But what I would
say is, there is space for everyone
to move considerably through this
Whitbread will change?
Would Freeman to -- freedom of
The point is that
we have managed to achieve
significant progress in a way which
is, I think, broadly being welcomed
and that means we can get onto the
future relationship conversation in
order to agree a future relationship
which is in everyone's best
That future agreement
would include signing new trade
deals, for example, the future, but
not during this transition period.
Do you accept that Britain will not
be able to strike any new trade
deals until March 2021 at the
The issue is when you can
start negotiating them and when you
can put them into place. Under the
framework of the fermentation
period, I think we all expect we
would not be able to implement new
trade agreements with new countries
during the implementation period.
2021 would be the earliest?
expect us to start negotiating
during the limitation period for
conclusion after it. I expect we
could get onto a great deal of
detailed work through Liam Fox's
And freedom of movement
would continue until March 2021?
date which is relevant to the
agreement which has been struck his
exit day but we will need to get on
and talk about the future
relationship before any of those
things have been agreed.
accept they have said you will have
to sign up to all of the agreements,
including the four freedoms, if you
are going to remain part of the
customs union and single market
until transition is finished?
asking me to comment on league
documents and we don't do that.
Do you accept the UK would still
have freedom of movement up until
I am going to celebrate we
have achieved sufficient progress.
We will get through the negotiations
knowing what our objectives are and
then we will conclude a
relationship. I'd take a judgment
like every member of Parliament and
every member of the public.
freedom of movement could continue?
We are very clear we are going to be
taking back control of our laws,
borders, money, trade policy.
We need to get into the future
said you'll make a judgment. Freedom
of movement you will take in the
round along with everything else
including that you trade deal.
Prime Minister is very clear that we
are taking back control of our
migration policy. There is a
migration Bill coming forward.
People watching will understand
we've just moved from one testing
negotiation in order to move into
the next phase of a testing
negotiation. It's not for me as a
Minister in the government to
pre-empt that long negotiation.
there are no red lines?
What are they?
The ones the primers
to set out in her Lancaster House
speech and Florence speech -- the
Prime Minister. We are clear the
implementation period needs to
conducted in the framework of EU
Including freedom of movement
and the jurisdiction of the ECJ.
These will be matters of
negotiation. For the moment we need
to go forward with this agreement to
the council, the other nations of
Europe agree with us it's not all
about interests to move forward.
Let's talk about the European Court
of Justice. In this document but
also in discussions there has been
agreement by the UK that the ECJ
will continue to have a role as
being the arbiter on EU citizens'
rights. That will continue until
You mean the withdrawal
The agreement you've
signed up to. The withdrawal
agreement is clear there is a
voluntary limited role for our
courts to refer cases to the
European Court so that we can
establish a body of case law within
the withdrawal agreement. Let's keep
it simple. The European Court of
Justice will continue to have a role
as the ultimate arbiter beyond
transition for eight years.
direct jurisdiction of the Court of
Justice will end. There will be a
capacity for our courts to make a
voluntary referral to the Court of
justice and case law where there is
a gap in case law, on the body of
law as it exists on exit day. I
think that is a reasonable thing to
do to give citizens certainty as the
withdrawal agreement beds in, so we
can all understand caselaw on the
withdrawal agreement is being
consistently interpreted. I think
that is a civilised thing to do for
European citizens which I would have
thought that people who took the
view we should keep people well
You may well be right
but it wasn't what we were led to
believe by some of your colleagues
who said that every single aspect of
the ECJ would end when we leave.
This is a negotiation and we've
worked through a range of complex
issues. We've reached a position
which I am happy to accept, much as
many of us would have liked to keep
things simple to everybody, but the
reality is we need to do what is
right by European citizens. We've
agreed this mechanism of voluntary
limited referral on narrow grounds,
which I think is reasonable as we
establish the caselaw of with -- of
the withdrawal agreement.
about the agreement of the DUP. What
does it mean?
The first thing to say
is it refers to a fallback scenario
in the event we don't reach a
quality future relationship
agreement. We want to honour the
Belfast agreement and inshore
North-South co-operation on the
island of Ireland continues. This is
about a fallback position, it's not
about where we want to go. The
document is extremely clear that the
UK will preserve its political and
economic integrity, that the United
Kingdom will leave the customs union
and single market.
What does full
nine and -- full alignment mean? You
said the integrity of the UK will
stay in its entirety, so does that
full alignment with customs and
standards of the EU applied to the
whole of the UK in that full --
I'm expecting us
to discuss all these issues. I would
expect us to agree objectives and
then regulatory recognition, which
is a standard practice in trade
agreements, so that we have a
capacity to sometimes agree on what
we want to achieve and how we do it,
and sometimes to agree that we will
differ in how we meet the same
In order to keep
that soft border between Ireland and
Northern Ireland, you accept that in
that full and macro fallback
position we will be signed up to the
standards and regulations and
customs of the EU?
What I accept is
we've had a great success...
not answering the questions about
what has actually been agreed.
would have thought you would welcome
we've got onto the future
relationship agreement which would
allow us to resolve some of these
issues collaboratively and jointly
in everyone's mutual interests.
did you get the DUP to agree to this
when they were so unhappy a few days
I wasn't party to the
conversation. As they've explained,
I saw Arlene Foster explaining it,
there have been a number of changes.
In particular that the commitment to
maintaining the constitution and
economic integrity of the UK
including Northern Ireland.
talk about the money. Philip Hammond
says we will be paying that divorce
settlement Bill even without a trade
deal, is that right?
is nothing is agreed until
everything is agreed.
So he is
Nothing is agreed until
everything is agreed. We are a rule
of law nation state which wishes to
honour its commitments which we've
incurred but we are moving through
this negotiation in a spirit of
goodwill, wishing to set up a new
partnership which serves us. Quite
so when Philip Hammond said he would
find it inconceivable that we
wouldn't actually pay for our
obligations and contributions even
if we didn't secure a free trade
deal did he misspeak? We are
proceeding in a spirit of
cooperation is looking towards our
future relationship. In those
circumstances we would expect to
meet our commitments which we have
entered into, and to move forward
into that new relationship. These
things go together. We need to focus
on a process of moving through the
negotiation, to land in a place
which suits everyone.
I'm still not
clear. Will we pay the £45 billion
which has been talked about in the
divorce settlement whether we get a
trade deal or not?
I'm not expecting
to pay a figure as high as £45
£40 billion then?
expecting to move through into a
process where we conclude a
relationship in everyone's best
interest, that is where all of us
should be focusing our efforts.
Polly Toynbee, listening to Steve
Baker, do you think it is clear that
there are no more red lines in the
negotiations that are now going to
I'm delighted to hear, it
really sounds as if there aren't. I
was on the politics with Steve Baker
before he became a Minister. He was
an adamant Leaver and he wouldn't
have accepted paying a significant
amount of money, staying under the
We went beyond the ECJ.
above all, alignment such that we
can have a soft border with Ireland.
It is a very good thing, the DUP
were right about that. That
alignment means in effect we are
moral less in the single market and
customs union. If that is what
happens I will be delighted.
guarantee that the whole of the
I did think I've changed my
views. I've always been a rule of
law Conservative, boys understood we
will want to have a cooperative
relationship. What I've wanted to do
is change the structure of that
relationship. What I would expect to
happen, and it is a
mischaracterisation to talk about
being under the ECJ. We will not be.
The direct jurisdiction of the ECJ
will come to an end and we will
control our laws. I'm sorry it's
slightly complex but I'd explained
in some detail but what we need to
do is have the capacity for a
voluntary referral to establish the
caselaw of the withdrawal agreement
on the narrow question of citizens'
rights, where they've already...
Polly, we are going to have to move
on. You said that figure of £45
billion was way over, what should it
be in your mind?
There will be a
technical briefing which will
explain more of this. Our budget
contributions which we've already...
Will be less?
I would expect it to.
How has the deal been received by
those in the Labour Party arguing
for the close as possible
relationship with the EU after
Brexit? Chuka Umunna joins me now
from south London. Do you welcome
I'm pleased we are
moving to the next phase. It's about
time. The government has wasted a
lot of time, we are 18 months into
this process and very little
progress in the overall scheme of
things. I'm pleased.
It's interesting listening to Steve
Baker radically trying to repaint
the lines set out in the Prime
Minister's speech last January. If
you go back to all the things she
said, there would be no adherence to
European Court of Justice rulings,
clearly that is going to be the case
in respect of EU citizens' rights in
the document that has just been
released by the commission. We were
told there wouldn't be huge
contributions into the EU budget, we
will be contributing until 2020, and
of course there is the divorce Bill
which in some respects was the price
of being able to move to the next
age of over £40 billion.
the Labour leadership under Jeremy
Corbyn and Keir Starmer when it
comes to Brexit, what should their
position be now?
It's very clear
that in order to be able to get the
exact same economic benefits as we
enjoyed at the moment in the
European Union once we've left, we
need to stay in the single market
and the customs union permanently. A
lot has been talked about
transition, business has asked for a
decent transition period. What
transition does is it simply delays
jumping off the cliff if you don't
have proper arrangements in place
Do you expect to hear
that now from the shadow team in
your party, that they should commit
to staying in the single market and
the customs union?
I'm very pleased
to hear Keir Starmer say at the
dispatch box this week that we think
will these options should stay on
the table. That's very encouraging.
I would like us to go that bit
further and be absolutely clear that
we are seeking to stay in the
customs union and the single market
permanently. The big thing here is,
every time this move forward we see
new facts emerging. That big divorce
Bill that Steve Baker has been
trying to dismiss almost, that
wasn't what people thought they were
going to be voting for. If you're
paying that big divorce Bill which
we will be paying, you aren't going
to get the £350 million extra per
week going to the NHS, which was
central to the campaign Steve Baker
was part. You go back to many of the
other things said. I remember when
Tony Blair and John Major went to
Northern Ireland as part of
referendum campaign and people said
when they were talking a potential
problems with the Irish border that
they were engaging in project here.
That has dominated proceedings over
the last couple of weeks. Every time
we move forward new facts are
presenting themselves and that is
why we have to have an open mind
about what happened at the end of
Do you have an open
mind on the agreement that has been
reached, because the DUP and the
Irish government as well as the EU
generally are on board at this
point, and there seems to be a
commitment and broad agreement that
there will be this open border, as
will be integrity of the UK going
forward be retained? Surely you're
happy about that?
central argument here is there is
going to be a lot of focus on
government competence and how long
this has taken. The fact is, Brexit
in the terms it was sold to the
British people is proving impossible
That's what compromises
about, isn't it?
wasn't the one setting the red lines
in this process at the start. It was
people like Steve Baker and his
Prime Minister setting out all these
ridiculous red lines which has meant
that we've wasted all this time. At
the end of the day they have
committed to this document, they are
committed to the concept of
alignment. The whole reason people
like Steve Baker, Boris Johnson,
Michael Gove and others were arguing
for us to leave the EU was to enable
both virgins. Now they've just
agreed to alignment. Why are we
going through this whole process?
Thank you. We've heard from some
Brexit supporting MPs within the
Conservative Party this morning and
on the whole they've given that the
only cautious welcome. What of the
self-styled guard dogs of Brexit,
Ukip? Their leader joins me now. Do
you want to join the queue
congratulating the Prime Minister
and the government on this
Absolutely not. What this
is is a total surrender to the
European Commission. In fact, having
worked in Brussels for three years I
recognise the style of the document
that is being produced and I would
say 80-90% of it was drafted in
Brussels. We don't know that but
that is my guess.
But the prize is a
trade deal is going to be negotiated
and Britain are successful in that
surely it will have your support?
But if there is no agreement we stay
under full alignment and means
effectively that we are tied to the
customs union, to the single market
and therefore to the European Court
of Justice in that regard.
Baker has just said we won't see the
customs union. He said we will not
say the customs union or the single
market and that this is a fallback
option and will only apply to
certain areas under the Good Friday
That is not actually
correct because, first of all, we
may not be part of it but what we
will be having to do is comply with
it in every respect, so we won't
have the freedom to move off it if
that's the best interests of the
country, for example in terms of
trade deals and aligning ourselves
to the requirements of export
markets, but with regards to the
Good Friday Agreement for the
Northern Irish border, that is the
starting point. The government and
we have never asked for, the UK, has
never asked for a board of there.
What Theresa May has allowed to
happen is that the European
Commission who want an external
border want us to come up with the
solution. What the Government has
agreed to do in this agreement is a
line for Northern Ireland but then
by paragraph 50, it actually says
that the UK will not actually
implement any barrier to alignment
between Northern Ireland and the
rest of the UK. And therefore we are
fully tied to it as the entire UK
and I don't support in any way,
absolutely oppose, anything that
provides an obstacle between
Northern Ireland and the rest of the
The point is, you are a lone
voice, really. Ukip has, to some
extent, been marginalised and if
Euro-sceptic Tory MPs and ministers
have signed up to this, then your
words are going to fall on deaf
I don't think so. It is a fair
observation but the thing is, they
are all aligning behind this because
the Tory party are in such a mess
over this. We've had a sequence of
rather disastrous political and
They are united,
Yes, because they want
to preserve the Conservative Party
They may say that is the
point of them.
It is why Steve Baker
is trying to sell this as the
headline issue - isn't it good news
that there is an agreement?
Unfortunately, what they are reliant
on is that 99 present of the
population when they read the small
print, and the small print says you
have basically made an agreement
where you are going to be handed
over a whole lot of money but we are
still not going to have control over
our immigration, we are still going
to be tied, if not intrinsically
members of, tied to the European
Common Market and single market and
customs union and therefore the ECJ.
Soares no withdrawal from this and
there is no end state or any
incentive to reach a further
Thank you very much.
Before I move onto my next guest,
your observation so far, having
listened to Steve Baker, who was
always described as an art Dureau
sceptic, and also to Henry Bolton of
Ukip. Do they matter?
I think we
need to have further discussion of
what this full alignment means,
because it has lost the word
regulatory which means it is open to
wide interpretation. And it is a
fallback position. Second of all, we
need to look at the facts that when
Polly said we have kicked the issue
to the curb and have put into the
long grass because you need to get
to the next age, that is because the
Government all were started from a
position that you couldn't discuss
the Northern Ireland border issue
unless you were discussing the trade
agreement so they have achieved
something in that and then moved
that plank of discussions to the
next stage because they belong
there. Therefore I think, when we
break this down because it is
getting quite competent ethical, --
complex and technical, our viewers
will be concerned with the price
that is put on this and 40 billion
is being bandied around and what I'm
interested in is what price people
will find acceptable. Will the
Brexiteer readers of our newspaper
the kid pain for long-term gain?
are joined by the shadow Brexit
secretary, Kier Starmer. Welcome.
Should the PMB congratulated?
good there has been progress. That
has come a bit later than we thought
but it is progress and it is
important that we put the deadline
next week because if that had been
missed, there was going to be
another three months until we got
that deadline and we do need to move
on. About the next stage, most
importantly transitional measures,
because businesses around the
country are all saying, we need to
know that there will be transitional
measures and they will be on the
same terms as now, and that is a
debate that should have started in
October, frankly. It needs to start
straightaway. It is good that we
have got to this stage.
When are we
going to hear from Jeremy Corbyn,
the leader of the Labour Party, on
this very important moment in
Britain possible constitutional
Jeremy dealt with Brexit
PMQs this week.
But today an
agreement has been reached. Wouldn't
you expect to hear from Jeremy
Jeremy is a Geneva and we
have a statement out within half an
hour of the developments within
Brussels. I've done various bits of
media this morning and will do
various more. I hope that is putting
across our message.
Let's try to get
to what your messages because you
want to retain the benefits of the
single market as closely as
possible. Isn't the best way of
retaining the benefits of the single
market staying in the single market?
Well, this question of staying in
needs to be dealt with and we
haven't really dealt with it. At the
moment we are an EU member and as an
EU member, we are in the single
market. When we leave, we then have
to strike a new agreement with the
EU. We are not staying in, you have
got to do something positive so
we've got to reach an agreement. We
are saying, reach an agreement that
delivers the benefits of the single
market so we can participate...
EU aren't going to give us a deal
where we keep all the benefits of a
single market without the four
freedoms so, as I say, if you want
to retain the benefits of the single
market in the way that Labour has
described, you need to stay in the
There was no question
of staying in.
That is off the
I really don't want to lose
it, the clarity of this. We are in
the single market as an EU member.
If we are to fully participate in
the single market in the future, we
need to strike an agreement, a
treaty with the EU, going forward.
That is what Norway did 24 years
ago, we will have to do a 21st
century version of that. That have
to be negotiated but in the
meantime, transitional, we stay in
because that is something available
to us under Article 50 but after
that, strike a new agreement that
allows us to participate fully in
the single market. That is what we
want to achieve and we want to
achieve it because it makes sense
for business. Or businesses want to
trade successfully in the future as
they have in the past. Will it be a
difficult negotiation? You bet it
will. Is it worth having?
is. And I clarify, because your
colleague Jenny Chapman was sitting
where you are and said to me a few
days ago that the issue of staying
in the customs union should be left
on the table.
The customs union is
I need to clarify it for
viewers who may be thinking, like
Chuka Umunna has just said, he would
like to hear you say that we are
staying unmissable market -- in the
single market and some of the
rhetoric from Labour implies that is
what you want to do but you have
said it is off the table. Our
current membership of the single
market is on or off the table?
single market and Customs union are
two different things and our
position is we want to retain the
benefits both of them and that all
options should be the table. If we
are to retain the option of fully
but as a leading the single market,
we have to strike an agreement with
the EU to get that and that is what
we need to do. At the moment we are
an EU member. Chukka and I want the
same outcome, which is the then if
it of the single market and customs
union. And talking about how we get
While we were talking, Jeremy
Corbyn has been speaking to the
United Nations in Geneva. Is
subject, Britain's place in the
world after Brexit. Let's listen to
the Labour leader speaking a short
My party stands for a
completely different future when we
leave the EU, drawing on the best of
the internationalist traditions of
the Labour movement and of our
country. We want to see a close and
cooperative relationship with our
European neighbours outside the
European Union, based on solidarity,
as well as mutual benefit and fair
trade, along with a wider, proactive
internationalism across the globe.
Let's get onto the customs union.
That is still on the table. Yes.
Let's just step back and see what
we're trying to achieve. In Northern
Ireland, if you are to avoid a hard
border, whether it is your first all
fallback position, you're going to
have to have alignment north to
south. It is the only way. I went to
Norway and Sweden to look at the
border between those two countries.
It is a hard border, there is
infrastructure, you have to stop and
The DUP said they don't
want Northern Ireland to be treated
separately in any way to other parts
of the UK.
And therefore if you have
alignment north to south in Northern
Ireland, between a country that has
left the EU, in the future, and a
country that is in it, you have
aligned with the EU for the purposes
of bulb Island, if you then a line
across the UK, which you have to do
because we need a UK wide agreement,
you have therefore created alignment
and playing by the same rules, the
same standards in future. That is a
good thing. It is a good thing
because it means we can trade in the
future with our European colleagues
as successfully as we can now and
that is a huge goal that we should
all be aiming for.
Explained to us
how Labour's policy on migration and
integration would work, because in
the manifesto it said, freedom of
movement will end when Britain
leaves the EU. And that is still the
case. So during a transition period,
will freedom of movement... You
would like to see freedom of
Yes. What we've
said is, we will not reach the final
agreement with the EU by March 2019,
therefore pennies to be a
transitional period. That should be
on the same terms as now, which
means in the customs union, in a
single market with European Court of
Justice and with freedom of movement
until we reach the final agreement.
When we reach the final agreement,
that will be the new treaty, the
21st century treaty, if we get this
right, that will, I hope, deliver
the benefits of the customs union
and the single market. That is what
we are aiming for.
Starmer is a lawyer and I think
sometimes people misunderstand the
difference between technically being
in the single market and actually
being on the same terms as the
single market. I'm not sure it makes
very much difference. What matters
is that we get exactly the same
trade agreement, single market and
customs union, as we have noted that
is what matters to the DUP and for
the border. There is no way we can
have a soft border unless we have an
almost identical system to now.
Which means in a sense that the
extreme Brexiteers don't get what
Camilla, what would you
let your readers think of that?
confused. I know you've tried to
explain as a number of times, Keir
confused. I know you've tried to
explain as a number of times, Keir,
but I think people are confused with
trying to mirror single market and
customs union membership but not
being in it but maybe being in it a
bit. People often say Brexiteers
don't know what they were voting
for. Chukka said it earlier. How
would he know? He has never been a
Brexiteer. Brexiteers voted to
maintain control of our legal
system, to control immigration, to
have free trading partnerships with
the rest of the world and to move
forward in that brave new future.
What you are both suggesting is a
fudge and is not what the British
public voted for.
There are two bits
of this. There is the referendum and
what is the future relationship with
the EU going to be? I don't think
anybody voted either way to damage
our trading relationship with the EU
and if we don't stay aligned, if we
don't have the benefits of the
single market and customs union, if
we haven't got a customs union
arrangement, if we are not fully but
as a leading unmissable market, it
will damage our trade with the EU. I
haven't met anybody who voted Leave
who said, "I was voting to damage
our trade with the EU". Unless you
stay aligned and you are
participating fully in the single
market... That is why this is so
important. In the end, maybe it is
overly lawyer like. We need a set of
arrangements delivering in a way
they deliver now because that is the
only way to preserve trade of the
future and nobody voted to damage
our ability to succeed in trading
with the EU in the future. We need
to be clear about this because
whatever this arrangement is, it is
going to be the arrangement for
decades to come and we need to get
it right and make a big decision,
which is, are we living in Europe is
our major trading partner for the
future or are we under other fancy
that there is some of the group of
countries out there?
aligned with those customs and
standards, we will in essence be
taking some of the rules from the
European Union, which is not what
We will be on the same
level playing field, we will be
applying the same standards and so
And we will take rules
from the European Union and will
have no say in how they are set out.
Who wants to reduce rights at work?
Who wants less rights for
you taking away from the trade union
movement by saying that rights at
work or you construct?
want to divert those on lower
You can't possibly be
saying is a labourer but it is only
the EU that attributes rights at
work. What are you saying about your
own trade union movement?
chapter had to be fought for and
fought for and the Tories kept us
out of it and then Labour got us in.
Nobody is saying it was going to be
taken away. It was new rights that
came from Europe.
To suggest we
would submit are at works' rights as
a result of leaving the EU...
not a question of where they came
from. The basic deal in Europe is,
you get the huge advantage of the
customs union and single market so
long as you are on a level playing
field and so it is not where the
rights came from, it is whether we
have the same standards across
Europe. If you have the same
standards you can continue to trade
successfully into the future. If you
don't, you can't.
Will freedom of movement end when we
It will have to change, the
Labour Party has been clear about
that. It's a matter for the
negotiations. We need to think about
what immigration rules we want to.
How will it change? Will it actually
Yes, because once we leave the
EU the rule about freedom of
movement goes. We've got to draft
immigration rules then. That is what
we are expecting, and immigration
Bill coming down the track from the
government. Once we leave those
rules are gone and we've got to
craft them in our own legislation.
You accept we won't have the access
to the single market in the way we
have it now as a member?
depends on the negotiations.
cake and eat it?
Know it's not what
he would start negotiations by
saying please drop my arm off
because I want to be worse off than
I am now? Of course you start off by
saying we want the benefits and a
model that works for the 21st
century and discussion of freedom of
movement. Europe has changed over
the years, we haven't established
precisely what rules we want an
immigration. To throw that away
before we start means we would
damage our trade with Europe and I
don't think anybody voted for that.
As we've been saying,
the sticking point which caused
the Brexit negotiations to collapse
at the beginning of the week
was the status of the Irish border.
So has that been resolved
to the satisfaction of both
Northern Ireland's DUP
and the Irish government?
Here's the Irish Taoiseach
Leo Varadkar and the
DUP's Arelene Foster.
We have achieved all that we set out
to achieve in phase one
of these negotiations.
We have the assurances
and guarantees we need
from the United Kingdom,
and support for them
from the European Union.
I'm satisfied that sufficient
progress has now been made
on the Irish issues.
The parameters have been
set, and they are good.
Now we can move on to work out
the detail of what has been agreed
to talk about the transition phase,
free trade, and the new relationship
between the EU and the UK.
We believe there have been six
and we're pleased to see those
changes, because for me it means
that there is no red
line down the Irish Sea.
We have the very clear
confirmation that the entirety
of the United Kingdom
is leaving the European Union,
leaving the single market,
leaving the customs union,
and I think that's a very
important statement to have.
It's also vitally important,
of course, that the integrity
of the United Kingdom
was kept in place.
But there are still matters
there that we would have liked
to have seen clarified.
We ran out of time, essentially.
We think that we needed to go back
again and talk about those matters.
I'm joined now by
Christopher Montgomery who,
although a Tory, was the DUP's Chief
of Staff in Westminster
until earlier this year.
Welcome to The Daily Politics. Did
the DUP caving in the end?
wasn't about the DUP. This is the
thing people keep getting wrong.
Everything that should have happened
on Monday but have happened today
was about one thing, getting the
Irish Republic off the hook of Leo
irresponsible pre-election rhetoric
had got them on. As recently as a
fortnight ago, the position of the
Republic was that Northern Ireland
should stay in the customs union,
the single market. Everything that
has happened today should be legally
enshrined otherwise there would be a
veto. None of these things have
happened, they had disappeared like
tears in the rain.
Why did the DUP
threatened to walk?
What seems to
have happened on Monday was trying
to do two things. In Brussels it
seems as if they were trying to make
the case there should be UK wide
alignment and various areas of the
economy with EU standards. This
wasn't something that the Cabinet
knew that they were necessarily
going to go and do. There was a
tweet which inaccurately surmised...
It sends a signal to people...
are saying it was one tweet and
otherwise everything would have gone
You've got to put some
degree of blame on Number 10. You've
got to put some blame on the
unionists were not having the
relationship with Number 10 in a
more high functioning fashion.
nothing has really changed, so why
have the DUP agree to it?
utterly meaningless. The words that
have been agreed to work complete
spoof. They were a device to allow
the republic to retreat from the
excessive rhetoric they had engaged
in. The things they claimed they
want, they haven't got. The Irish
Republic was the last country in the
EU 27 who would ever have...
never know of course. They don't
sound very happy even now, the DUP.
Arlene Foster seemed to be saying it
in sorrow rather than anger and
Sammy Wilson from the DUP has said
this is all conditional and we
aren't completely signed up to it.
At any point the DUP could say we
are withdrawing our support.
not just the DUP's position. The
British government's position is
nothing is agreed until everything
is agreed. We haven't pivoted into
phase two. There was a mythical
Irish veto in phase one, it is
One could argue the
To get what?
Toynbee, has there been a
substantive change between what was
in that draft text that seem to
upset Arlene Foster and the DUP so
much, regulatory alignment, and what
we have now which means the UK will
Act in its entirety, there will be
no special arrangements.
there has been a big change. The DUP
were right to say no hard border and
no border on the sea, do not divide
us from the rest of the UK. The only
thing that's not the about the DUP
position is why did they ever vote
for Brexit in the first place. The
majority in Northern Ireland were
I hate interop...
they had said they were for staying
in the EU and customs union and
single market it would all make
sense, but the DUP are very
They are Unionists. The
union voted for Brexit. There wasn't
a referendum in Northern Ireland on
whether Northern Ireland should
leave, it was the same referendum.
In terms of looking ahead, Sammy
Wilson has also said "We need to be
fully involved in those talks to
void the hiccup we've had this
week". Should they be fairly across
every eye that has been dotted?
The DUP is much more
important than people might like to
believe, it is the tail wagging the
The DUP has been important and
earlier in the week Downing Street
were briefing it wasn't an issue
with the DUP but an issue with Leo
Varadkar having seemingly overplayed
his hand, perhaps with Brussels
behind being the master puppeteer.
Of course they've changed the
I don't quite agree. Fine
Gael have gone up 5% in the polls.
You've got to understand the Irish
Republic has an attitude towards the
UK which is chippy. If you're
battering the Brits, it plays well.
Let's leave it there. If like me you
have left the Christmas shopping to
the last year, the Vladimir Putin
2018 calendar is out now.
There are plenty of snaps of Mr
Putin in action poses. Mr July is my
favourite and according to the
Kremlin it is flying off the shelves
in Britain. We've been unable to
find any shops in the UK stocking
the calendar and online sales have
And I'm joined now by Mary Dejevsky,
a columnist for the Guardian.
Why are they saying these are
selling like hot cakes?
I know you
are seeing a great conspiracy and
fake ease. I would actually question
that because I was looking around
today to see about Putin calendars.
There's plenty of them online. You
can get them from all over including
the spectacular one up there you had
with a cheetah. The Putin calendar
has become a sort of set piece at
the end of the year. The idea that
over here it is a Kremlin sponsored
operation, nothing could be further
from the truth.
You should think of it more in terms
of the Jeremy Corbyn unofficial
annual or whatever.
had that, it's true! How do people
in the UK view stories like this?
don't think they have this idea that
there is malign intent behind them.
Are you sure?
To be serious for a
second, there is a big disconnect I
find between establishment views and
grassroots. Whenever I do phone-ins
about Russia, then you get a
completely different view from the
top which says everything is
dreadful, Putin is a dictator,
demonising him all over. People ring
in and say it's so unfair, it's so
wrong, you have to see it from their
point of view.
One might say it's a
bit sad to have a calendar of any
world leader on your wall but why
would anyone in Britain want to have
one of Vladimir Putin?
There's a bit
of an alternative thing about it.
It's not something probably that
everyone is going to have on
Have you got one?
definitely want one!
Are you going
to get them feel stocking fillers?
think so, I think it's really funny.
I think it's good for a secret Santa
and anything beats Cliff Richard!
Are you still with Cliff Richard?
never ceases to amaze us that he
tops the chart of the most popular
calendar every time.
Do you think it
will be popular here?
It's got a
rival. If I was betting on the rival
that's the one I would take. There's
Putin and dogs
that's the one I would take. There's
Putin and dogs
a wonderful picture of him with his
gigantic dog. This is supposed to
give you the other view of Vladimir
And being told the pictures
in the calendar are rather old, they
aren't very recent. They've been
recycled, does that surprise you?
That I don't know but there are
probably only so many poses a
president has time to strike.
manages it. Are you going to have
that one as well?
If I can find one.
It could be a bestseller. I'm sure
it really will be flying off the
That's all for today.
Thanks to my guests.
This was almost a Brexit special, it
has to be said.
The one o'clock news is starting
over on BBC One now.
Sarah Smith will be back
on Sunday on BBC One at 11
with the Sunday Politics,
and I'll be back here
on BBC Two on Monday at midday
with more Daily Politics.