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How do states trust each other to comply with treaties?
7 votes

Yes, it's based on reputation. They could consult a credit rating agency but generally those are only used by lenders looking to lend a government money, rather than nation states looking to do deals. ...

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Is EU Treaty Article 50 (2) paradoxical?
7 votes

No, "take account" only refers to the negotiations. The agreement would be done at EU level and only take effect after the department member state leaves. It is allowed to make such negotiations, just ...

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What did Theresa May mean by: the EU wants a backstop to the backstop?
7 votes

The original backstop was an agreement to keep either all or part of the UK in the EU customs union until a solution was found for the Irish border. The UK agreed to this in principal but now the ...

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The DUP have threatened to “vote down the budget” - but what does this mean?
7 votes

Just to add some context to the other answers, the current Conservative government lost its majority at the last election. In other words it doesn't have more MPs than the rest of the parties combined,...

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Do dog-whistle politics only refer to racist and right-leaning statements?
7 votes

For something to be a "dog whistle" it has to be understood by the listener to be a proxy for something that the speaker wants to avoid saying. For example, saying "states rights" when the audience ...

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Is there a precedent for a country attacking another and later admitting their casus belli was false?
7 votes

The UK invaded Iraq along side the US, but later investigations (by Sir John Chilcot) found that the evidence used was either bogus or vastly over-stated. In particular, evidence given to the UN about ...

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In the US why is nationalism equated with racism?
7 votes

Lots of answers addressing the main question, so I wanted to address one of your assumptions: As a result I agree with the President's "America First" message, since I know that the other countries ...

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Is the European Union perceived as privileging certain countries?
6 votes

Mr. Riches is blaming the wrong people. The reason that EU immigration is seen as making non-EU immigration more difficult is because xenophobes and other assorted bigots demand that overall ...

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What does it mean to support the brexit deal but need more time to scrutinise it?
6 votes

Today was only the second reading, which is an agreement on the principal but not the detail. So MPs are saying they agree with leaving the EU with a deal, but not that they accept the deal Boris ...

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Customs checks and Brexit
Accepted answer
6 votes

In a word, yes. The backstop, which this idea is supposed to replace, was only ever intended to be used if the UK and EU could not agree on terms by the end of the transition period (currently ...

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How soon does the PM have to present a passed bill for royal assent?
6 votes

On the Today programme on BBC Radio 4 on 02/09/2019, David Gauke claimed that by constitutional convention Parliament could not be prorogued while legislation was waiting for royal assent. So in the ...

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Could Boris Johnson theoretically ignore any legislation passed to prevent no-deal brexit?
6 votes

Refusing to make the request for an extension would create a constitutional crisis. The UK has no written constitution, but by convention the PM would be obliged to follow the clear will of ...

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Will the DUP agree to a Northern Ireland Referendum?
6 votes

The Northern Ireland Act 1998 gives the Secretary of State for NI the power to call a border poll. In practice they would need agreement from the Irish government as there would likely need to be a ...

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No-deal Brexit: What would be the basis for a WTO complaint if goods entering Ireland are checked at Dunkirk?
Accepted answer
6 votes

WTO rules require countries to charge everyone the same tariff, so any trade operating under WTO rules must abide by that. If checks were only done at Calais/Dunkirk but not along the Irish border, ...

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During the transition period will UK membership contributions continue as before, in addition to the divorce bill?
6 votes

The deal has not been agreed yet, but the current proposal is to keep paying during the transition period in addition to the £39 billion divorce bill. The bill will be paid out over a long period of ...

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What is the point of unlimited terms?
6 votes

It's less of a question of why they allow it, and more of a question of why they didn't create term limits. In the UK it appears that there was simply never much call for term limits or political ...

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Could the UK "hold Ireland hostage" by leveraging the GFA to require an open NI border after a no-deal Brexit?
6 votes

This argument is pure sophism. No-one would think that breaking the Good Friday Agreement by the EU establishing a hard border was entirely the EU's fault. They would blame the UK for failing to find ...

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Arguments for Scotland in non-EU United Kingdom?
5 votes

One argument that has been made is that Scotland would lose some access to the UK market, which is a major one for its economy. There seems to be some truth in that, as we have seen that Northern ...

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In the absence of a trade deal, and an amended withdrawal agreement, how will smuggling be prevented across the Irish border?
5 votes

Initially the EU will probably try legal means to force the UK to enforce a new border down the Irish Sea. If that fails the point may become moot because Northern Ireland votes to rejoin Ireland in a ...

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Why does Brexit threaten the Good Friday Agreement from 1998?
5 votes

A key aspect of the GFA was the removal of all border apparatus on the Island of Ireland. The border was often a target of violence and a physical divider between the two communities. If the UK ...

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What does the British parliament hope to achieve by requesting a third Brexit extension?
5 votes

In the short term the stated goal is to prevent no-deal, which many in Parliament see as damaging to the UK. Beyond that being forced to ask for an extension will damage the Tories and their leader ...

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Why did Boris Johnson fly home after the prorogation of parliament was declared illegal?
5 votes

It would have looked very bad for Boris if he had not returned, having just lost a major court case and with Parliament meeting to scrutinize his actions. If he had stayed away it would have looked ...

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If the EU does not offer an extension to UK's Article 50 invocation, is the Benn Bill irrelevant?
5 votes

If the extension is rejected there are two options available to Parliament. Pass a law forcing the PM to revoke Article 50. Pass a motion of no confidence in the government, form an alternative ...

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What can a person do if she could not cast her vote during EU parliamentary elections?
5 votes

The only practical thing seems to be to sue the government, in the hope of forcing them to provide adequate opportunity to vote next time. That is happening in the UK with EU citizens who were wrongly ...

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Does Parliament need to approve the new Brexit delay to 31 October 2019?
5 votes

No, because the Cooper bill implements it as a negative instrument. That means that it will happen unless Parliament votes against it, as opposed to the more common positive instrument where ...

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What are the disadvantages of a WTO Brexit(Clean Break)?
5 votes

WTO rules are much less favourable than the deal that the UK currently has with the EU. There would be mandatory tariffs in both directions, forcing up prices. The UK would lose things like EU ...

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Why does the EU insist on the backstop when it is clear in a no deal scenario they still intend to keep an open border?
5 votes

The UK is leaving the EU, so the EU considers the UK responsible for resolving the issues with the Irish border. Since a hard border is not an acceptable option, other solutions must be found to ...

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Why does the UK parliament need a vote on the political declaration?
5 votes

Article 50, which governs how countries leave the EU, states that in the two years after triggering it the EU will negotiate how that country will leave with consideration given to the future trading ...

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Can the UK revoke Article 50 to reinvoke it later?
5 votes

It's possible but timing is an issue. The European Court ruled that it is possible for the UK to unilaterally revoke Article 50. However, if you read the Advocate General's opinion, on which this ...

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Is there any difference between black supremacism and white supremacism
5 votes

White supremacists have a history of exerting significant power in the west and using it to oppress people. Non-white supremacists have rarely had any significant power to enact their policies. More ...

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