EVEN though Theresa May still finds herself at odds with her Cabinet, her Brexiteer backbenchers and Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party whose MPs hold the balance of power at Westminster, and who are now intent on exerting this influence, the Prime Minister soldiers on and heads to Brussels today for crucial talks on Britain’s future relationship with the European Union.
Yet, while many hold the view that Mrs May’s difficulties have been exacerbated by the stance adopted by European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker, he is – for now – showing a degree of patience in the hope that the Prime Minister can obtain sufficient support at Westminster for her plans which, significantly, do now command significant support from the CBI and other business organisations.
However much does rest on the tone of the future text outlining how Britain will trade with the EU, and vice-versa, if the Withdrawal Agreement is implemented. Here the EU can help itself – and Mrs May – by showing a greater understanding of the political forces that drove the Brexit vote in the first place and being receptive to the compromises sought by the PM.
For, at the end of the day, it’s in the interests of both this country – and also the EU – that this whole process is advanced as expeditiously as possible.