Ferdinand Mount, 9 February 2020
So far, in the first few days of actual Brexit, the Johnson government has ganged up with the EU on the three hottest issues of the day. And there is plenty more to come. It’s hard to see how Johnson can avoid ‘betraying’ Britain’s fishermen all over again by letting EU boats continue to trawl in UK waters as they have for centuries. These spats are conducted by all sides in Trumpish style: fortissimo, strutting, the protagonists always talking back to their domestic audience. Quiet diplomacy is for wimps. Meanwhile, the great corpus of European law continues to squat on our statute book, and the £30 billion committed to future European projects under the withdrawal agreement still has to be paid. For Brexiteers, the EU is a visitor who long outstayed her welcome and has now left her luggage blocking the hall.