Next question. What is @BrandonLewis going to say and do today? It strikes me that he has two options. 1/4
First, he could commit to the NI Protocol and explain the work that is ongoing, within the very limited confines of the TCA, to 'de-dramatise' the GB/NI border. Ideally he might even explain the Protocol, and the reasons why it was agreed. 2/4
Or second, he could respond to the real concerns of the Unionist community, and make promises, incompatible with the NI Protocol and the TCA, not to introduce 'unconstitutional' intrusions onto UK sovereignty. 3/4
There are strong voices urging him in each direction. I'm not at all sure which way he will move. My best guess is that what we hear will be no more than an unsatisfactory fudge, which will soon unravel. 4/4

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More from @syrpis

9 Apr
Has anyone written anything about the financing of COVID testing?

I'm just reacting to the news stories about people having to pay for multiple tests if they go on holidays abroad. 1/4
We have had *a lot* of testing done so far - for going to school, for going to workplaces, if symptomatic, etc etc. All of that has been free (at least for those being tested). 2/4
So... my questions:
How does one distinguish between situations in which testing is free and not? Are we moving towards more paying for testing? What would the implications be of making all COVID testing free? 3/4
Read 4 tweets
7 Apr
One more go at the Irish border 'trilemma' (see @rdanielkelemen's Venn diagram) and Brexit.

The implications of the latest developments are very stark. Thread.

While the UK and the EU were in the same regulatory space (single market and customs union) there was no need for significant border checks between the two. 2/
Then along came Brexit. Over the years since 2016, Brexiters' position has hardened. Sovereignty and regulatory freedom were prioritised. And so, solutions which would have 'solved' (or 'de-dramatised') the Irish border issue were rejected. 3/
Read 13 tweets
1 Apr
Late last night, I had a dream that I was given access to the work which is being done, deep in the bowels of Downing St, for the Brexit inquiry. I only remember snippets, but here goes... THREAD. 1/8
The conclusions have already been written. Teams (led by a respected cross-party group of members of the House of Lords (Hoey, Stuart, Hannan and Moylan were mentioned)) are now seeking out the evidence. 2/
Brexit is a triumph. Global Britain has been reborn. Our sovereignty has been regained. We have regulatory autonomy and unfettered trade. The Govt has worked day and night to deliver on the people's priorities, and must be celebrated. 3/
Read 8 tweets
31 Mar
I started to read the Commission Report on Race and Ethnic Disparities (attached).

It is jaw-dropping in places. This, from the foreword, for example... 1/2…
'We increasingly felt that an unexplored approach to closing disparity gaps was to examine the extent individuals and their communities could help themselves through their own agency, rather than wait for invisible external forces to assemble to do the job.' 2/2
Just two more points on this.

1. 'Helping themselves' is *not* an 'underexplored approach'. FFS.

2. If 'external forces' were more visible that might, who knows, be an improvement. FFS.
Read 7 tweets
28 Mar
OK... So I have read the self-styled 'hugely significant' revelations in the Mirror so that you don't have to.

Highlights in the thread below. 1/10

But just in case you want to have a read yourselves, the link is here:…
The purported huge significance attaches to possible breaches of the Nolan Principles.

ICYMI, there are already a huge number of examples of breaches by Johnson and his Cabinet colleagues in the public domain. People don't care. 2/
But perhaps they do care about the details of the tryst. That, for better or worse, is where the article puts its focus.

It seeks to make a lot of the bond which Jennifer had with Boris (or should that be 'Alexander the Great'). Some examples... 3/
Read 10 tweets
21 Mar
This appears to have taken off somewhat - thanks for all the retweets and comments.

Several people are asking what can be done. A couple of small suggestions follow. Do share other, no doubt better, thoughts too. 1/5
The first is directed towards those who have the chance to interrogate the Govt (media, MPs etc).

Try to explore their position on these sorts of issues - where do they stand on eg breaches of international law and the Ministerial Code, international COVID comparisons... 2/5 speech, the right to protest, cronyism, etc etc. How do Ministers etc seek to explain their position? Juxtapose what they said then with what they are saying now.

Which brings me to the second point. 3/5
Read 5 tweets

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