James Forsyth

Theresa May must make sure that Brexit doesn’t just become a process story

Theresa May must make sure that Brexit doesn't just become a process story
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The EU Withdrawal Bill is undoubtedly an important piece of legislation. But I suspect that the bickering over Henry VIII clauses and affirmative statutory instruments passes most voters by. This is why it’s imperative that Theresa May keeps reminding voters of what the point of Brexit is, of what it will enable this country to do.

One of the many problems with the Tory general election campaign was that it turned Brexit into a process story. May talked endlessly about the need to strengthen her hand in the negotiations. But as Andrea Leadsom complained in the political Cabinet’s post-mortem of the election campaign, May never said what Brexit was actually for.

When May gives her big Brexit speech later this month, she must raise her eyes from the details of the withdrawal bill and instead concentrate on what Brexit is for and set out her vision for Britain after we leave the European Union. If she doesn’t do that soon, voters will quickly become impatient with the Brexit process.