1. Exquisite Tweets from @JP_Biz, @alanbeattie, @jdportes, @djmgaffneyw4, @kevinhorourke

    PreoccupationsCollected by Preoccupations

    Question remains for Ireland & EU: If it’s no deal, but no hard border, where & how is the integrity of the single market to be protected?

    BBC News NI @BBCNewsNI
    Varadkar: Irish government not preparing for hard border - bbc.in/2D7yqgm

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    JP_Biz

    JPCampbellBiz

  2. Missing tweet: 1055913662865653760

  3. I agree. They need to be seen to be forced into it.

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  4. @kevinhorourke who I assume knows Irish politics better than us has stated precisely this (some time ago)

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    jdportes

    Jonathan Portes

  5. Not willing. But it's a more survivable option than agreeing anything involving border controls. That scenario would make the UK parliament's coming traumas look like a picnic.

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    djmgaffneyw4

    Declan Gaffney

  6. Still somewhat puzzles me that eg Varadkar says “there won’t be controls” rather than “we will do everything we can to avoid controls”. Won’t he look weak if forced to backtrack on the former?

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  7. I think there's continuity with Kenny government in this: not doing or saying anything that could be interpreted as suggesting government is even contemplating border controls as a remote possibility.

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    djmgaffneyw4

    Declan Gaffney

    Yeah. Agreeing border controls is just at the bottom of any plausible ranking of options, for this or any other Irish party of government.

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    djmgaffneyw4

    Declan Gaffney

  8. Missing tweet: 1055920370807701505

  9. Assuming your government is HMG, the madness insofar as it affected the border was pretty clear from 2016 Tory conference.

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    djmgaffneyw4

    Declan Gaffney

  10. Here he says what I think you want him to say. A welcome statement of the obvious.

    twitter.com/dphinnemore/st…

    David Phinnemore @DPhinnemore
    Varadkar: "What could give rise to a hard border is a hard Brexit, or a hard Brexit that doesn’t make special arrangements for Northern Ireland... to avoid both of those things... that’s what we’re working towards.”
    irishtimes.com/news/politics/… via @IrishTimes

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    kevinhorourke

    Kevin Hjortshøj O'Rourke

  11. I agree, but I think we should take the more recent statement more seriously. It may indicate that he is now taking threat of no deal very seriously and beginning to recalibrate the language to be as accurate as possible, and stress that full alignment is required to avoid border

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    kevinhorourke

    Kevin Hjortshøj O'Rourke

  12. True, but it's not clear to me why, except for deliberate deception or ignorance, he previously gave such an unequivocal assurance (and not that long ago tbf) when he clearly couldn't deliver it.

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  13. Missing tweet: 1055928309132001280

  14. Missing tweet: 1055928866030714880

  15. Who knows. I have criticised him in the past for it. A mixture of domestic political considerations (FF ready to pounce on the issue) and a desire to emphasise how utterly unthinkable any deal involving a border would be I suppose...

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    kevinhorourke

    Kevin Hjortshøj O'Rourke

  16. Unless he's been misquoted or misrepresented, he's gone beyond that to say it won't happen. "Under no circumstances will there be a border. Full stop." Unequivocal, unconditional. Irresponsible IMHO.

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  17. Missing tweet: 1055930052859305987

  18. Unless he's saying "Ha ha I lied to those suckers" that doesn't change the status of the declaration.

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  19. I guess what he has been occasionally guilty of in the past (but no longer it appears) is refusing to contemplate in public the possibility of a no deal Brexit, or of HMG refusing to live up to the engagements on the backstop given in 12/18 and 3/18.

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    kevinhorourke

    Kevin Hjortshøj O'Rourke

    A sin but as Karl is suggesting a pretty venial one in comparison with the never-ending stream of mortallers erupting from elsewhere..

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    kevinhorourke

    Kevin Hjortshøj O'Rourke

  20. Missing tweet: 1055932438252306433

  21. Missing tweet: 1055932937693290499

  22. Missing tweet: 1055934522922024960

  23. Whether it has relevance for LV’s political popularity I leave more superficially-minded people to judge. It just strikes me as rather dishonest, and I’m old-fashioned enough to think that’s important.

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    alanbeattie

    Alan Beattie

  24. I think it's dishonest. I understand the rhetorical rationale. I still come down against saying this sort of thing.

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    djmgaffneyw4

    Declan Gaffney