Scotland in Europe Update: 6th September 2019

What a week! The Government keeps losing votes, MPs, longstanding members and support. Even the Prime Minister's brother has deserted him.

It is clear that this Government is focused on getting Brexit over the line at any cost, because Boris Johnson has invested so much of his personal political capital in doing so. It doesn’t matter that two of the four constituent parts of this United Kingdom voted to Remain in the EU, doesn’t matter that the vote three years ago was narrow and plagued with concerns over legalities and around the information available, doesn’t matter that the current Prime Minister himself was hauled up by the UK statistics authority for a “clear misuse of official statistics”. There is a core gang in Downing Street willing to put the no deal gun to the collective head of the UK and tell the EU “we’ll do it”.

To be clear – despite what the UK Government says – there are no negotiations going on and we will exit with no deal by accident unless we all work together. Over in Brussels we are doing just that: this week your SNP team were instrumental in the creation of the Brussels declaration:

The proroguing, or shutting down the UK Parliament in order to limit scrutiny of the implications of a potential no deal Brexit is completely unacceptable. Limiting the opportunity for MPs to debate, vote and crucially, to legislate, cannot be the response to a referendum in which Leave campaigned for the UK Parliament to “take back control”.

In the continuation of the spirit that UK MEPs have worked in since the 2016 Referendum we commit ourselves to continue to work across party lines and declare that it is vital that MPs do likewise.

Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat, Alliance, Plaid Cymru and SNP MEPs all agree that Johnson’s Government cannot continue like this, and we will all do everything in our power to stop him. This is not over yet.



The actual bill– currently meandering its way through Westminster – to block a no deal Brexit can be read here.

The Scottish Government lodged applications to intervene in two legal cases aimed at stopping the UK Parliament being suspended ahead of the Brexit deadline.

The week has been even more of a rollercoaster than we've grown used to these past three years. These columns from Ian Dunt give most of the nitty gritty if you are trying to catch up.

and from Wednesday:

and yesterday. As he concludes: this is not how Johnson thought the week would go!

Open Europe produced a handy summary of how the rest of the EU has reacted.

The New Yorker also gave an excellent take on Boris Johnson’s first (though not last) defeat to show how folk across the Atlantic are seeing things.

It is worth remembering that as the Brexit farce rolls on the European Parliament and Holyrood continue to deliver for the people of Scotland.

The Scottish Government launched its programme for government for 2019-2020 launching a Green New Deal.

MSPs also voted to reject a no deal Brexit.

Alyn met with the BMA to discuss their concerns about a no deal Brexit.

Peter Ungphakorn has once again explained that GATT Art24 will not rescue the UK. Some of these Brexiter myths just keep resurfacing.

A leaked UK Government document on the official “alternative arrangements” working groups concludes: “It is evident that every facilitation has concerns and issues related to them. The complexity of combining them into something more systemic and as part of one package is a key missing factor at present.”

The European Commission updated its no deal preparation notices. Make no mistake the EU is prepared, even in the UK can’t be.

The UK in a Changing Europe also updated their research on the impact of a no deal Brexit.

Ivan Rogers hits the nail on the head when he warns us that “much of our political debate is ducking the central strategic questions and is obsessing, in increasingly hysterical fashion on all sides, about tactical ones.”

The European Parliament research service has put together a handy guide to the Council's role in the European Union.

And finally, Alyn’s National column this week emphasised that we have a plan A for indyref2 and it's all we need.