The Brexit Debate: Should We Have One?

To scrutinise or not to scrutinise, that is the question. Should the Government have to publish a White Paper setting out its strategy for the Brexit negotiations? To keen Europhiles like Mr Clegg, discussion in Parliament represents a braking mechanism, something which will make the Government pause before it throws “the single market baby out with the EU bathwater”, something which will prevent it from galloping over the hard Brexit cliff like a 21st-century version of the Gadarene swine. Others, however, see the early publication of the Government’s position as folly. The secret of negotiation is to keep your cards close to your chest, and showing them in advance could make it harder to achieve the best deal. Better far, as the Government now proposes, to leave any debate until terms have been agreed. Well, who is right?

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