The passage of Lords amendments to the Government’s EU Withdrawal Bill have fundamentally weakened our negotiating position to secure reasonable conditions upon which to leave the EU on 29 March next year.
As I have said before in this column: the strength of a negotiating hand is based on the ability to walk away without making a deal. If your counterparty knows that you really won’t be able to walk away, then he can increase his price accordingly.
The estimate that I made of the parliamentary proceedings over the last week was that, given the make-up of the Commons, there is very little likelihood of the House accepting our leaving the EU without EU agreement on the terms.
Unfortunately, the EU Commission will have been watching too and may have drawn the same conclusion