Tusk: Brexiters without a plan deserve a special place in hell…

…may be a bit over the top but Donald Tusk does have a point. It was madness to have a binding vote on Brexit without having any clear plan of how it could happen. And madness to call an election to get a mandate. And mostly a mad mess since.


This won’t be encouraging for Theresa May and her Government, but apart from the strong language this European condemnation is not a surprise.

BBC – Brexit: Donald Tusk’s planned outburst

They weren’t off-the-cuff remarks, but a planned outburst.

The softly-spoken politician who holds the authority of all EU countries has just completely condemned a chunk of the British cabinet, wondering aloud: “What that special place in hell looks like for those who promoted Brexit, without even a sketch of a plan how to carry it out safely”.

Sure, for a long time the EU has been frustrated with how the UK has approached all of this.

And sure, plenty of voters in the UK are annoyed too at how politicians have been handling these negotiations.

But it is quite something for Donald Tusk to have gone in like this, studs up, even though he sometimes reminisces about his time as a football hooligan in his youth.

Be clear, he was not intending to talk about voters who wanted to Leave, but politicians who were involved in the campaign.

He also had pretty stern remarks for those who’d been on the other side of the argument, accusing those who still want the UK to stay in the EU of having “no political force, and no effective leadership”.

But if you strip away the planned flash of temper, also in his remarks was an invitation to the prime minister to come forward with a different version of the backstop – a “believable guarantee”, a promise that a “common solution is possible”.

That is, on the face of it, in tone at least, more of an opening to the UK to put something new on the table than we have seen from the EU side.

It seems an odd way of encouraging a new approach, but at least it attracted attention.

Guardian: Brexiters hit back at Tusk after he says they deserve ‘special place in hell’ for failing to have a plan

One thing seems clear – Brexit has become a hell of a mess for May and the UK.

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  1. David

     /  7th February 2019

    How can it be a mad thing to do to have the voters make a call on how they are governed..and by whom given 30% of laws in the UK now come from a pretty anti democratic institution. The EU is less popular in many European countries than they are in the UK.
    They voted to leave in the face of a state sponsored propoganda machine forecasting floods and pestilence.
    Its turned into a great big steaming mess because the conservative PM is a duplicitous hag who is arguably the worlds worst negotiator and her political career has been marked by a lot of indecision and a habit of only taking advice from a small cabal of advisors and side lining her cabinet.
    Perhaps a special place in hell should be reserved for the folk who have condemned a generation of kids in Spain, Italy and Greece to a life of unemployment while allowing in floods of young migrants.

    • But the vote was not on an specifics of how they should be governed.

      It would be like having a vote here for a constitution before trying to write a constitution.

      There’s a good reason why our vote for MMP versus FPP was a final step, after a clear alternative to FP had been worked out and decided on.

      • David

         /  7th February 2019

        Yes it was. The vote specifically said leaving the EU. No discussion leave means leave it’s just the establishment who are trying to change it after they lost

      • Pink David

         /  7th February 2019

        “But the vote was not on an specifics of how they should be governed.”

        History did not start with the EU, the UK has some history prior to it’s membership if you check carefully. It’s even got a parliament and everything.

        “It would be like having a vote here for a constitution before trying to write a constitution.”

        It’s nothing like that. It’s a vote to say that any constitution should be voted on by the nation, not imposed by a conglomerate of other states dominated by Germany and France.

    • Patzcuaro

       /  7th February 2019

      A 52 – 48 vote to Brexit is not what I would call a resounding victory especially with several regions (London, Scotland and N Ireland) actually voting to remain. That margin of victory should have lead to a period of consultation within Great Britain and with the EU as to how it would happen. Then a final vote on what to do.

      The Conservative Party can’t even agree a common way forward, it is just a shambles and must be very frustrating for the rest of the EU.

      • Duker

         /  7th February 2019

        democracy isnt about ‘resounding victorys’
        if it was the other way round would you say that ?

        In other words you are saying , didnt like the result, lets have a second vote
        have you not looked at both Labour and Conservatives increasing their vote in recent general election.

        • Did Labour and the Conservative vote increase because of Brexit or for a multitude of other reasons.

          • Duker

             /  7th February 2019

            You tell me me why the conservatives got 6% more, labour got 9% more and yes the Corbyn factor was part of labour’s increase. But Both increase?
            But what would be reasons both the SNP and Liberal Dems decreased…at the previous election the LD decreased and the SNP increased.

        • Pink David

           /  7th February 2019

          “if it was the other way round would you say that ?”

          Spot on.

          • Patzcuaro

             /  7th February 2019

            I doesn’t worry me whether the go or stay but the current situation is a shambles.

  2. Duker

     /  7th February 2019

    The election that was called did deliver a mandate, Both major parties supported Brexit AND they both increased their share of votes ( due to the way FPP with multiple parties works that didnt lead to both having increased seats)

    The idea that a Brexit plan could be presented to the public ‘to vote’ is silly .. The idea that EU wants Northern Ireland to stay in an EU customs union is absurd.

    • “Both major parties supported Brexit”

      Really? Brexit was little more than a word and a general intent to separate from the EU. There is little sign of them supporting an actual Brexit deal, nor of the EU agreeing with it.

      • Duker

         /  7th February 2019

        There was a major information campaign to ‘give both sides’
        this was the ‘official’ Vote leave site

        The other side was given by Britain Stronger in Europe

        EU agreeing to it ?
        The EU has a section of its founding treaty on leaving the EU.
        “Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) states that “Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements”

        Acting in Good faith doesnt seem to have been part of the EU bureacuracy’s plan.

      • Duker

         /  7th February 2019

        Wrong again. It wasnt just a ‘word’ during the election.
        heres the Conservative party mainfesto on Brexit

        “This restates the Conservatives’ commitment to the Brexit approach they have taken so far, as set out in Theresa May’s Lancaster House Speech, the original Brexit White Paper
        and other commitments like
        “We will enact a Great Repeal Bill.
        The bill will convert EU law into UK law, allowing businesses and individuals to go about life knowing that the rules have not changed overnight.
        The bill will also create the necessary powers to correct the laws that do not operate appropriately once we have left the EU, so our legal system can continue to function correctly outside the EU. Once EU law has been converted into domestic law, parliament will be able to pass legislation
        As well as the Great Repeal Bill, we will bring forward a number of additional bills to ensure that when we have left the EU there is a clear statutory basis for United Kingdom authorities to exercise powers that are currently exercised through EU law and institutions.
        The final agreement will be subject to a vote in both houses of parliament.”

        Thats nothing like “Brexit was little more than a word and a general intent to separate from the EU” which you claimed was at the time of the General election.

        • That sounds like general campaign fluff. What happened? The Conservatives got hammered in the election.
          The lack of a clear plan was paart of the reason for this

          They still don’t have a clear plan. That’s the whole point Tusk was making.

          • Duker

             /  7th February 2019

            A White Paper was a detailed plan.
            Tusk i cant substantiate what he says , just like you.
            Of course they had a detailed plan , just the EU wanted to sabotage any plan they had.

            Hammered in the election, false again when you look at the millions more voters the Conservatives had ( from 11.3 mill to 13.6 mill) to give them 5.5% increase
            labour had 9.6% swing ( their manifesto supported Brexit as well )

            And Remain supporting parties ?
            Libe Dems went down 0.5% , and SNP 1.7%
            Because of the way FPP works with multiple partys in many seats, those numbers didnt reflect to change in seats.

          • Pink David

             /  7th February 2019

            “That sounds like general campaign fluff. What happened? The Conservatives got hammered in the election.”

            They got hammered because May is horrible, and a remainer.

  3. Duker

     /  7th February 2019

    As for the doom and gloom for the UK economy -these things vary anyway.
    But Germany, ah Germany
    “Germany’s economy narrowly avoided a recession at the end of 2018 after a slump in industry raised concerns over Europe’s growth engine.”
    I think they were doing to having 1 extra day in the quarter compared to the previous that saved them
    The previous quarter was about zero as well

  4. Duker

     /  7th February 2019

    Madness ?
    First you are mistaken that it was ‘legally binding’, but the Government promised it would follow the majority decision.

    Britain had previously had a similar non binding referendum on the EU in 1975

    The Government has announced the results of the renegotiation of the United Kingdom’s terms of membership of the European Community.
    Do you think that the United Kingdom should stay in the European Community (the Common Market)? YES/NO

  5. High Flying Duck

     /  7th February 2019

    Never thought I’d type these words – but well said Duker.
    The EU has gone out of their way to make like difficult issuing many statements during negotiations of what “they will not allow the UK to have” and articulating the significant costs they wanted to impose. They have not acted in good faith as they try to set an example with the UK to stop others from exiting the union.

    That said, Theresa May has also been ham-handed and appointing remainers to negotiate was negligence of the highest order. They were never going to come up with an acceptable plan to exit the EU as they didn’t want one.

    The current situation was inevitable given the actions on both sides, and now panic is setting in.

    Europe will suffer as much as the UK if the deal doesn’t get sorted so hopefully a useful plan can be agreed before the cut off date.

    • Duker

       /  7th February 2019

      Eu has some crazy ‘pre conditions’ Not sure if they all remain

      No current EU member will ‘pay more’ after Brexit
      Existing EU Citizens living in UK retain access to European Courts of Justice
      UK Fishing zones remain open to EU vessels as is currently
      Ireland was to treated as a special child by EU and get favours from Britain.
      But Norway and Sweden long had relaxed cross border conditions before joining the EU.
      The Scandinavian countries had passport free travel since the 50s , ( so did Britain and Ireland as did NZ and Australia until the late 70s). Not a big deal

      • High Flying Duck

         /  7th February 2019

        Absolutely. Brexit is only a problem because the EU are determined to make it so by imposing draconian restrictions on the UK instead of as a closely aligned ally with much in common but maintaining its sovereignty.

  6. Patzcuaro

     /  7th February 2019

    • Duker

       /  7th February 2019

      The EU has been especially intransigent on the Irish border, hopping to get UK stuck in a customs union but with no say.

      I notice that the EU has been the same with fishing policy, as UK has a large national fishing waters, which they want to maintain their right to fish after Brexit occurs.
      The idea of compromise is alien to EU bureaucrats, which they have in common with bureaucrats everywhere, but the Senior EU ’employees’ are a special breed apart.

  7. Alan Wilkinson

     /  7th February 2019

    EU bureaucrats face a bleak future after Brexit when they will be engaged for the foreseeable future fighting off more countries wanting to follow the UK out as well as having a mini USA on their border sucking trade and talent out of their heart.

  1. Tusk: Brexiters without a plan deserve a special place in hell… — Your NZ – NZ Conservative Coalition