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Simon Usherwood @Usherwood
, 14 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Right then

Let's have another bash at unpicking what's actually getting decided in #Brexit

1/
Listen to the radio or TV, read stuff online, and it's all 'Chequers this', 'no-deal that', 'Northern Ireland the other' and frankly it's confusing, not least because a lot of media are getting confused

2/
The way through this is to remember that there are several parts to 'Brexit', which are linked, but still distinct

3/
(you read more detail on this bit here: )

4/
Short version is that right now the negotiations are focused on the wrapping-up of the old EU-UK relationship (ie membership)

So talking about the new relationship is secondary

5/
The deal that needs to be signed by Nov/Dec only deals with sorting out the liabilities of that old relationship, be they financial, legal or regulatory

6/
That's why the Irish dimension's there, because leaving changes the UK-IE relationship too, as framed by the Good Friday Agt. Hence the discussion about backstops and alternative plans

7/
Alongside that legal document (the Withdrawal Agt), there will also be a Political Declaration, which'll set out aspirations for the new relationship (remember that's the other bit of Brexit)

8/
That's where we should find some language that alludes to Chequers, but it's a Declaration, not a firm legal commitment, so I'd not take that as What Will Happen

9/
It's only going to be once that Withdrawal Agt is signed and ratified that it'll have legal force and will mean that the UK leaves next March with a 'deal'

10/
Failure to sign it, or failure to ratify it (and that means ratification by the UK, by EU member states and by the Eur.Parliament) means a 'no-deal' exit on 29 March

11/
Only if the WA is in effect will there be new negotiations on the future relationship (which will include Chequers) from April 2019: that's when the EU will consider the old relationship to be wrapped up

12/
No WA deal means no future relationship talks, just crisis management to cope with the huge uncertainties that will have appeared on 29 March.

Obviously, eventually there'll be future relationship talks, but from a very different starting point

13/
So

The deal to be struck now is about wrapping up the old relationship, not about setting in stone the new one

/end
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