BREAKING NEWS : Mitchell’s Sports bar reopen tonight just 2 days after health department shutdown Full Story
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Welcome back to Brexitland

After a long summer vacation, Britain's politicians return next week for the final lap.Between now an...

Posted: Sep 2, 2018 9:42 AM
Updated: Sep 2, 2018 9:42 AM

After a long summer vacation, Britain's politicians return next week for the final lap.

Between now and early January at the latest, a deal needs to be struck on Brexit between the UK and the European Union which ties up all the loose ends after Britain walks away from 40 years of membership.

Brexit

Continents and regions

Europe

European Union

Government organizations - Intl

Northern Europe

United Kingdom

In addition, the groundwork needs to be laid in defining what the relationship will look like in the future.

So, what agreements have been reached, and what remains to be done?

When it comes to the "divorce," many -- if not most -- of the outstanding issues have been settled. The UK has agreed to pay a generous "divorce bill" and both sides have agreed to settle the status of their respective citizens in each other's territory.

The main outstanding issue, the one that must be causing negotiators to lose sleep at night, remains Northern Ireland -- or, more precisely, the question of what to do once Britain leaves the EU to avert the need for a customs and regulatory border between it and the Republic of Ireland to the south: an EU member state.

Which brings us back to our returning (and doubtless well-tanned) parliamentarians. At some point over the next few months, they will be asked to vote on whatever deal the government strikes with the EU.

The European Union has stated repeatedly that the choices on the table are limited. Either Britain remains within the EU's single market, or it leaves it altogether. Similarly, the UK either remains in the customs union, or it faces the imposition of tariffs and other impediments on trade.

So Britain faces a choice. It might decide to remain very closely linked to the EU -- part of its market and customs union and therefore still subject to EU laws (over which, as a non-member, it will no longer have any say) and bound to accept the right of EU citizens to come here and work. Or, we can have a more distant relationship -- a "cleaner Brexit" in the jargon, and leave the single market and customs union.

The problem is that, in the latter case, the EU will insist on a different status for Northern Ireland, keeping it more closely tied to the EU than the rest of the UK so as to avoid the imposition of a north-south border on the island.

And here's the rub. As things stand, it is hard to see there being a majority in the British Parliament for either of these outcomes.

Many MPs would view the former option as a betrayal of those who voted leave precisely to escape from EU law and end the freedom of movement of workers. Meanwhile, not only are less EU-hostile MPs wary of the economic costs of a cleaner break, but the British parliament is unlikely in the extreme to vote for an outcome that will separate part of the country from the rest of it with a customs and regulatory border.

So as the endgame approaches, and despite the progress made, an obvious achievable outcome is as hard to imagine as ever.

Of course, a lot can change. Such is the febrile state of British politics that it is virtually impossible to predict how our parliamentarians will vote in a vote that will not be held for some months.

And of course, the EU position might change. The sharp rise in the pound following what appeared to some to be positive comments about Brexit ambitions from the EU's chief negotiator underlined what a game changer such a shift would represent.

Unfortunately, that was largely all the incident represented, as Michel Barnier's comments were somewhat misinterpreted and did not imply the kind of softening in the EU's approach that many in Britain assumed (or, rather, hoped, they did).

So there is still much to play for. It is as hard to predict the eventual shape of the Brexit outcome as it ever has been. All we can be sure of is that it will continue to be the single most important issue in our politics for the foreseeable future, dominating governmental and parliamentary agendas, and continuing to feed the anger and bitterness that continue to bedevil our political debates.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 359430

Reported Deaths: 6033
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion48740894
Lake30537484
Allen20668338
St. Joseph19177245
Elkhart18813246
Hamilton15457182
Vanderburgh10956137
Tippecanoe1012335
Porter932192
Johnson7732177
Hendricks7353165
Vigo6736106
Monroe604854
Madison5858125
Clark575986
Delaware5535108
LaPorte5291105
Kosciusko512948
Howard417680
Bartholomew380065
Warrick364374
Wayne362893
Floyd360279
Marshall343150
Grant326753
Cass323232
Hancock320663
Noble292450
Boone282056
Henry280741
Dubois271934
Jackson266638
Morgan259246
Dearborn252832
Gibson220333
Shelby216661
Knox212122
DeKalb210838
Lawrence205951
Clinton204025
Wabash195224
Adams192724
Miami191218
Daviess176747
Montgomery171429
Steuben168616
Jasper167717
Harrison167025
Ripley167022
Fayette165839
Whitley162417
LaGrange159534
Huntington153311
White151224
Putnam147831
Decatur145246
Wells145035
Randolph143724
Clay140426
Jefferson139719
Posey135722
Scott129725
Greene121054
Jay115516
Sullivan111418
Jennings106315
Starke104328
Spencer9678
Fulton96419
Fountain9588
Washington9019
Perry89221
Carroll81313
Franklin80228
Orange77028
Vermillion74911
Owen72210
Parke7056
Tipton68327
Blackford66116
Rush6488
Newton62513
Pike59321
Pulaski49720
Benton4483
Brown4226
Martin4006
Crawford3611
Union3032
Warren2893
Switzerland2825
Ohio2507
Unassigned0285

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 446849

Reported Deaths: 6753
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin57040674
Cuyahoga43640768
Hamilton34945379
Montgomery23828265
Butler17529154
Lucas17023438
Summit16486374
Stark11437231
Warren994381
Mahoning9092303
Lake840880
Lorain8213106
Clermont712156
Trumbull6752155
Delaware668142
Licking658677
Fairfield634265
Greene623977
Clark6038142
Allen569995
Medina565858
Wood5434113
Marion523067
Miami513168
Portage441676
Pickaway440350
Columbiana4131103
Richland409643
Tuscarawas405980
Wayne3838108
Mercer319859
Muskingum314512
Hancock284546
Ross278766
Darke275463
Ashtabula271957
Erie266670
Auglaize265841
Geauga257251
Putnam246455
Scioto240023
Union232213
Lawrence223341
Shelby222317
Athens22134
Seneca209621
Belmont198729
Madison191019
Sandusky189233
Huron185422
Preble180021
Jefferson172316
Defiance167733
Washington164129
Fulton159730
Knox159520
Crawford158620
Logan153821
Holmes153239
Ottawa143732
Ashland135133
Williams132912
Brown12675
Jackson125913
Clinton125619
Highland124418
Hardin122126
Champaign12158
Guernsey117115
Henry114629
Van Wert114118
Morrow11262
Fayette108117
Perry104513
Coshocton102815
Gallia95615
Pike9352
Adams91513
Wyandot88019
Hocking80718
Paulding78215
Noble69828
Carroll61412
Meigs49612
Monroe41022
Morgan37014
Harrison3053
Vinton2996
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Overcast
34° wxIcon
Hi: 49° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 29°
Angola
Broken Clouds
32° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 27°
Huntington
Overcast
35° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 27°
Feels Like: 28°
Decatur
Broken Clouds
36° wxIcon
Hi: 49° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 32°
Van Wert
Broken Clouds
36° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 28°
Feels Like: 32°
Chilly Saturday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events