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Even Sunak seems to like the single market. So why doesn’t Labour?

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T here is a marvellous moment in one of the great Fast Show sketches when, within seconds, the George Smiley-esque interrogator raises his hand in triumph because the prisoner has given himself away – blown it, as they say.

Such a moment came last week, when, in his commendable efforts to settle the Northern Irish question, Rishi Sunak told the province how lucky it was to be in the European single market as well as the UK.I should not wish to push the comparison too far, but it is certainly the case that before the euphoria accompanying the Windsor framework, the prime minister appeared to be a prisoner of the rightwing European Research Group (ERG), who are in cahoots with the Democratic Unionist party (DUP).There is much speculation that, notwithstanding all the triumphalist spin and the splits in the ranks of some of the former hardliners, he still is. (More of which later.)His words about the wonders of single market membership will certainly not have appeased the Brexit hardliners, but they are music to the ears of rejoiners such as your correspondent.

In one sensible and crushingly obvious observation, Sunak, a Brexiter himself, has blown the case for Brexit. This should be a moment when the rejoin campaign reinvigorates itself, and forgets all this pessimism about “it’s going to take years”.That it is going to take a long time is the depressing conclusion of an outstanding analysis by Sam Freedman of the Institute for Government, entitled – not depressingly – Getting Brexit Undone.

Freedman emphasises how the now widespread recognition that Brexit is a disaster has shifted voter sentiment decisively, “leaving the major parties in a quandary”.Although 54% of YouGov respondents say Britain was wrong to leave the

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