Thursday, 30 June 2016

Meagre pickings

Theresa May as a Home Office minister is more acutely aware of the immigration distinctions than anybody. She does not view it through a single scope and does not conflate the issues. It is one thing she has intellectual clarity on. So she will not risk single market access for a policy pursuit she knows will not substantially reduce immigration. She has already made a firm commitment to the single market (and services) which makes her a rational and safe choice which won't spook the markets.

If anything if she is leader they will breathe a sigh of relief. If we send one of the Vote Leave morons then we are in trouble because they would rather blow single market access than concede on freedom of movement - and they are actively hostile to the EU - which is the last thing we want when we are seeking an amicable departure. On the other hand you have Leadsom who can't separate out immigration issues, ruled out the single market when challenged during the campaign and can't even convincingly define it. This is not a serious proposition.

If you want an adult tempered by reality, choose May. If you want a petulant and naive mouth-breather, then choose Leadsom. It doesn't matter a if you don't like Theresa May. I don't like her either - but this isn't about choosing someone to have a cup of tea and a chat with. This is about the person who will be negotiating the largest shake up of European politics since the second world war. May has prestige and is respected internationally. Leadsom will be laughed out of the room and the British will be regarded as cranks for even thinking about sending her. As to Gove, if you vote Gove, you get Cummings. This is a time for pragmatists, not zealots.

I also remind leavers that Vote Leave did not win the referendum for us. If anything they cost us a larger win margin. The grunters against immigration were always going to vote leave so there was zero point in chasing the knuckle-scraper vote. These are also the same people who ruled out any kind of transitional agreement and attacked the single market from the outset. Now you're telling me you want one of these people in charge of the country? No thank you!

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