*This is a translated version of an Norwegian article from Aftenposten.no
The divorce process has been problematic the whole time, due to British clarity, but at least as much because Brussels has shown little determination to find a satisfactory solution for the British.
Someone had hoped things would be better only Theresa May had her country meeting. But she did not become a phoenix bird resurrected from the ashes with new shining feathers. On the contrary.
Map and terrain
The conservative party in the UK was once called the most successful electoral machine in the Western world. Ian Macleod, minister of four conservative governments in post-war times, has best expressed the party’s pragmatism: – The Socialists can scheme their schemes, the Liberals can dream their dreams, but we have work to do.
The contrast is great for today’s Tory party, which shows little willingness to unity, one of the prerequisites for success in politics.
This is of course about the EU, as the bitter controversy of the party has been doing for almost fifty years. – Friendship is in dissolution, party figures do not talk together, and the EU is taboo when we meet socially, like Nicky Morgan, a former minister of state told a literature festival this week.
This could have been
The EU issue has cost all the last three conservative British prime ministers the job: Margaret Thatcher, John Major, David Cameron. And now, Theresa May stands for a turn.
Let’s stop by David Cameron. Because if Cameron had not announced a referendum on British EU membership – which he had not needed because there was never a national requirement – he would be British prime minister to this day. But he declared a referendum (as he was sure to win), lost it – and pulled.
That’s why it was set for Theresa May. It started so well. When joining her 13th of July last year, she held one of the finest accession talents held by a British prime minister. It is not quite easy to understand it today, but less than half a year ago she was stronger in the population than any British government chief. When she announced new elections to Parliament (to secure a better negotiating position with the EU), she had twenty percent of the leaders in the polls.
But the election campaign was a disaster for May. She won the election on June 8th, but she lost the majority in the Under House, and now lives on agreed grace from 10 Ulster Unionists.
Theresa May himself wanted to withdraw after the election. But the party praised her to stay, not because they trusted her, but because they did not have any successor to gather.
May’s authority disappeared with the under-house number. She no longer says that “no deal is better than a bad deal”. Nor do “Brexit is Brexit”. She does not say – at least not yet – that Brexit is flexed, but now she wants a two-year transitional regime after 2019, where the UK is subject to EU laws and regulations. And she is talking about “an ambitious economic partnership” that respects both the four freedoms of the EU and the will of the British people. Some have called it ‘EEA minus’ or ‘EEA light’. A possible solution that today has the support of a majority of the British, but who will split the conservatives.
So far, Theresa May will be sitting. Perhaps the negotiations are finalized. Maybe not.
A leadership choice is triggered when May withdraws, or at least 48 of the party’s sub-house representatives demand it. It is the sub-group who nominates candidates. They vote according to the method of withdrawal until two candidates remain. Subsequently, the election is left to the party’s common members who decide which of the two finalists will be the new party leader.
Foreign Minister Boris Johnson is the party’s favorite and will surely win – if he reaches the final. But that is not certain. For his colleagues in the Lower House, Johnson’s shares are falling. “The parliamentary group is furious at Boris, as Nicky Morgan said at the literature festival.
Johnson is accused of having his own Brexit policy, much “harder” than the government’s official. While Finance Minister Philip Hammond expresses concern about the British economy after a divorce – and criticizes it – Johnson proclaims that Britain outside the EU will be the most important country, “the greatest country” on earth.
Gold in egoism
Strong words are said about Boris Johnson. “Blunt and dishonest,” says someone. “The closer you get to him, the worse you like him,” says Johnson Cinema Sonia Purnell.
Max Hastings, who was Johnson’s editor when Johnson was a journalist in the Daily Telegraph, has called him “a far more reckless, yes, disgusting man than what people think.”
– Gold medalist in self-interest, says Hastings. “I would not let him be alone with my wife, or – as I have painfully learned – with my banknote. (-) It’s hard to believe that a man who is unable to control his sexual activity cannot control the country. ”
At the last point, however, there is a reason to get Johnson to the rescue. As Hastings, who is historically educated, knows excellently, poor governance in the first area, does not necessarily mean poor control on the other.
It’s a lot about the conservative party that the only one who can compete with Boris Johnson on the favor of the common members is not domestic minister Amber Rudd or Finance Minister Philip Hammond, and not even Brexit Minister David Davies, but Jacob Rees-Mogg, 48, many MP and son of William Rees-Mogg, editor of The Times for many years. Rees-Mogg does not want anything to do with the EU, he looks and sounds like he comes right from the nineteenth century, he doubts, but in Latin, and gives his children (six to date) names like Sixtus Dominic Boniface Christopher and Alfred Wulfric Leyson Pius Mogg.
At an appointment during the country meetings, he said that “I’m sorry to admit I was young once. I was not very good at it, but technically I was a youth. ”
Jacob Rees-Mogg is intelligent and eloquent. Private polite and sympathetic. But it is hard to imagine that a reactionary eccentric is a man who can lure the youngsters back to the conservative party.
But who knows? – in Donald Trumps, Bernie Sanders, and Jeremy Corbyn’s World.