Friday, October 28, 2016

Roundup: Which way forward?

Wallonia has given in and the EU-Canada CETA deal will be signed. But the decision of the German constitutional court that allowed the deal but said that member states (Germany) can decide to call it into question exists. So is the upcoming decision of the ECJ (European Court of Justice) as to which portions of the EU-Singapore deal are "trade", and thus can be voted on only by the EU, and which not, and thus require approved by member states' parliaments. A separate post re trade will be posted.

In the US, Clinton seems headed for a win. The issue is what happens with the Senate and the Congress. Hillary was expected, like Obama, to have to deal with GOP majorities in the both houses, but the Donald effect could change that.

In Greece, the Tsipras left of center government was dealt a blow when the county's highest court ruled that the license granting law for national TV stations was unconstitutional.

The Russian fleet was not fueled by Spain, in the end. The Spanish government's action would have been a breach of EU strategy that Spain had agreed to. The cancellation came from the Russian side. Spain has a transitional government headed by Rajoy, a conservative, following two election deadlocks. It has 19.5% unemployment, second only to Greece (23%) in the EU.

Nissan has agreed to produce two lines of cars in the Sunderland plant. PM May hailed that decision as a sign that post Brexit Britain is Open for Business. News reports claim the company has received Brexit Refief assurances in case its made in the UK cars face tariffs in the EU27.

Zac Goldsmith's decision to quit his Richmond seat as a Tory in protest of a Heathrow expansion decision by his own government and re-run as an independent has prompted a Brexit battle for the new seat. 72% of local voters voted for Remain in June and the Liberal Democrats have tried to make the by-election a Brexit poll. And while they were calls inside Labour not to field a candidate in order to support a LibDem pro Remain candidate, the main candidate for the LibDem nomination (takes place this weekend) said that the Leave decision of June must be respected! Messy indeed.

The Guardian has revealed the content of a Theresa May speech in May at Goldman Sachs in which she mentions grave concerns re the economic effects of a Brexit. The PM's office replied that this was then, now May will implement the will of the people. She has also accused the opposition leader of frustrating this will. Note that according to Brexit ref exit polls, 33% of those who voted for Leave did so to curb migration. That means that around 17-18% of voters actually want freedom of movement between the UK and the EU curtailed. So, why is May making end of free movement the cornerstone of her Brexit policy. No one has explained that.

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