Politicians normally duck and dive around awkward questions. Brandon Lewis dispensed with such manoeuvrings when quizzed on the Government's new Brexit plan.
"Yes, this does break international law in a very specific and limited way," he told the House of Commons.
In Northern Ireland, there are those who admire the chutzpah of the Secretary of State. Everybody else wants to bring back Julian Smith.
At least the incumbent at Hillsborough Castle, for better or for worse, has finally stepped out of his predecessor's shadow.
Some Brexiteers here admire the Government for challenging Brussels and charting its own course regardless of the legalities.
Remainers' worst fears about the trustworthiness of Boris Johnson's adminstration have been confirmed. They don't buy the "very specific and limited" line.
"Will the Tories now legalise bank robbery if the culprits target only a specific bank and limit themselves to taking a certain amount of money from the vault?" one anti-Brexiteer wondered.
The latest twist in the Brexit saga has further polarised opinion here. For every anti-EU unionist who says 'slap it up Brussels', there's a pro-Remain nationalist saying this is all just further proof that Perfidious Albion is alive and kicking.
TUV leader Jim Allister questioned the Secretary of State's claim that the new legislation is a breach of international law.
Legal matter: TUV leader Jim Allister questioned the claims by Brandon Lewis
"The treaty approved by Parliament was on a conditional basis and Section 38 of the Withdrawal Agreement Act preserves the sovereignty of Parliament," he says.
But why is the Government introducing this bill just 113 days before the Brexit transitional period ends? Allister believes it is either just posturing in the ongoing trade negotiations with Brussels, or else "the penny has finally dropped on the huge constitutional ramifications that the Brexit deal will have on the Union".
The DUP has spent considerable time lobbying the Government for changes. Arlene Foster led negotiations with both Johnson and Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove.
She has been made to look foolish by recent developments. In her Sky News interview aired last Friday, she said that while some would continue to fight against the Northern Ireland protocol, she had to recognise that it was now the law.
Just three days later, the story broke of the Government's plans to change the law. That made the DUP leader come across as clueless. Being fair to Foster, the interview was conducted three weeks before it was aired. It was not her fault that the situation had changed in the intervening period.
Besides, this Government is unpredictable in its behaviour. Regardless of who was First Minister, or led unionism, they may not always be kept in the loop with developments.
The proposed changes to the protocol may have been over-exaggerated anyway, and Foster's analysis to Sky may prove largely correct. We've yet to see the details of the bill. Will it actually place Northern Ireland on the same footing as the rest of the UK? The DUP remains cautious.
Writing in today's Belfast Telegraph, Brandon Lewis says the bill aims to "guarantee unfettered access for Northern Ireland's businesses to the rest of the UK market".
That appears to confirm that the main changes to the Withdrawal Agreement will be limited to Northern Ireland's exports to Britain, and not what we import from Britain. We will still remain in the EU single market for goods and subject to its customs' code and tariff.
A Westminster insider says the Government's intervention is really to serve its own selfish, strategic interests. "Dominic Cummings couldn't give a hoot about Northern Ireland or the Union," he says.
"The Government is acting because it does not want Britain to be subject to EU rules on State Aid. It wants to be able to help companies in North of England constituencies which voted for Brexit and which voted Tory in the last election. That's the real focus. Northern Ireland could fall into the Irish Sea and Cummings wouldn't care."