Last year was the year people in Westminster got their knickers in a twist about Brexit again. Among some arch-Remainers, there was a forlorn hope — expressed by Lord Adonis — that “if Boris goes, Brexit goes”. Johnson’s backers harnessed those arguments in a failed attempt to defend the prime minister. More subtly, Robert Colvile argued that Brexit was imperilled if the Conservatives failed to “bed it in” — meaning, diverge sufficiently from EU regulations as to make it “difficult for a future government to reverse”.
All of which gives the impression that Brexit is far more fragile than it in fact is.
Both of our main parties have ruled out tampering fundamentally with the present settlement. A Conservative government is not about to seek