Sammy Wilson, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) spokesman on Brexit, has warned the European Union that they will be “in trouble” if Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement is voted down.
The East Antrim MP’s socially conservative, working-class Northern Irish party provides the Prime Minister’s minority administration with its parliamentary majority, but has vowed to vote against her Brexit deal due to its “backstop” provisions, which they believe will fundamentally undermine their province’s place within the United Kingdom.
The deal’s expected failure in Parliament will not only be bad news for Mrs May, however, but for the EU itself, in Wilson’s estimation — with the former Lord Mayor of Belfast warning: “If you look at the hand which the UK has, once this deal is voted down the EU are in trouble.”
He pointed out that it “seems Germany is going into recession” — a fact little remarked upon by Britain’s broadcast media — “[and] that’s going to put pressure on the EU budget, [especially as] they’re not going to have the £39 billion which they expected to get from Britain.”
“We fought a terrorist campaign to stay part of the United Kingdom and we are not going to allow bureaucrats in Brussels to separate us from the rest of the United Kingdom.”
— BBC Newsnight (@BBCNewsnight) January 14, 2019
The Ulsterman is confident that a clean, sovereign Brexit on World Trade Organization (WTO) terms — the so-called “No Deal” scenario — could be a success, sparing Britain from having to pay a multi-billion “divorce bill” to the EU or follow its rules on customs, competition, state aid, and so on in a way which would more than compensate for the reintroduction of WTO tariffs.
“If the Prime Minister were to use the strong hand which a vote against this agreement gives her tonight, then I believe things can be turned around,” he suggested, adding that his party would not support the vote of no-confidence in her government which Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn — whose Shadow Cabinet has often expressed sympathy for the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) which sought to dislodge Northern Ireland from the British Union through much of the 20th century — has promised to call.
Government ‘pledges’ on the backstop could be written in blood and still wouldn’t change the reality or legality of this diabolical deal. We will vote it down! https://t.co/11koYt6sev
— Sammy Wilson MP (@eastantrimmp) January 15, 2019