Special arrangements for Northern Ireland post-Brexit are needed – and all of Britain would benefit from them
The DUP’s apparent scuppering of the Brexit deal in Brussels this week is not merely a sign of political intransigence. The party has been effectively pushed into a corner by the way British government ministers have framed Brexit as a challenge for the Irish border.
David Davis, Boris Johnson and others have claimed that in this matter “the constitutional integrity” of the UK is imperilled by the EU’s desire to protect the legal order of its single market and customs union. In an effort to substitute strong rhetoric for policy, they have thus managed to raise the stakes over the Irish border issue to even more extreme heights. The DUP, reassured by the forceful nature of their claims, could not but follow suit – even repeating the same phrase: “The economic and constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom will not be compromised in any way.”