Sensemaker Live: What does Biden mean for Brexit?

About this ThinkIn

Sensemaker Live is in partnership with Santander

In the middle of a campaign media crush the BBC’s Nick Bryant asked Joe Biden for a comment for the BBC. For who? The BBC. Biden’s reply: “I’m Irish.”

This “Irishman” is now president-elect. He bears no animus towards the UK that anyone’s aware of, but he’s been clear that he’s no fan of Brexit, and specifically that any aspect of Brexit that might endanger the Good Friday Agreement would cross a red line. The UK’s Internal Market Bill as originally drafted does just that. The Lords removed the offending clauses this week but the government intends to put them back.

Britain is hurtling towards the end of the Brexit transition period with no deal in place with the EU and a UK-US deal a top priority for Boris Johnson’s government. Is he ready to accept a new geopolitical reality in order to make these deals happen? If not, then what? And if Brexit turned disorderly, would a Biden administration care or would it just find polite language for ‘we told you so’?

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Editor and invited guests

Giles Whittell
Sensemaker Editor

Georgina Wright
Senior Researcher at the Institute for Government. Georgina is on the Brexit team where she focuses on UK engagement and influence in the EU after Brexit. Her research interests include the EU27’s views of Brexit, Franco-British relations and the future of the EU. Prior to joining the Institute, she was a research associate at Chatham House and has worked for the European Commission and NATO in Brussels.

Erich McElroy
Stand-up comedian and writer. Originally from Seattle, he moved to the UK in 2000 and in 2007 collected his British passport. He is also the presenter of the America Exchange podcast where he talks to interesting voices in media and politics to ask about the country of his birth.