The deal - a swimming pool - the final crunch has arrived!Watch
-- Gandalf, Lord of the Rings.
So we've arrived at the crunch point of crunch points. Theresa May allegedly has a deal and shortly we get to hear what it is.
The time has arrived for self-interested hedge fund owner Rees-Mogg to throw his toys out of the pram, for the DUP to denounce it (they seem to denounce pretty much everything) and for slippery Boris, who previously supported staying in the Single Market, to claim it will all be a disaster.
Apparently the solution to the Northern Ireland Problem is a swimming pool, or so Robert Peston tells us. (Deeper at the Irish end, shallower at the English.)
Assuming Theresa doesn't go down immediately, it will come to a rowdy Parliament and then we will see what Corbyn really, really thinks - or maybe not.
Let the chaos commence.
2. The agreement has been published, all 585 pages of legalistic bumpf.
3. The deal includes an indefinite transition period, during which we keep paying. So in fact the government appear to be able to indefinitely postpone Brexit if they want to, which is probably what they need to, because all other options are terrible for the economy and the people.
4. Nobody seems happy, so perhaps it will get voted down tomorrow in Parliament by way of a confidence motion.
5. If it does, that could mean a snap general election just before Christmas, which seems unlikely, because it's hard to imagine that Tory MPs will really want to risk a Corbyn government. So it would appear that Mrs May will get her way.
6. Watch this space!
1/ The cabinet has nominally backed the agreement proposed by the May team and the Barnier team, whilst apparently (we are told) being deeply split. Only 11 of the 29 ministers attended and 1/3rd of them were opposed.
Lol, I assume they meant "roughly". Actually there are various stories spinning around now about who was opposed and in the end they don't stack up, given that she obtained cabinet approval.
Is the whole point just a grand charade to allow her to say she did everything she could and now there's really no option but to stay in? As given the alternative of a Corbyn government, the Tory turkeys won't vote for Christmas?