Last night Boris wrote to Jezza asking the Labour leader to set out his Brexit policy. Read the letter in full here…
In 38 days’ time, the British people will go to the polls to vote in the most important election of our political lifetimes. When they choose the next Prime Minister, the voters deserve to have a clear picture of what each potential leader will do when it comes to Brexit. After three years of delay. the public wants to get Brexit done. We need a Parliament that is willing to allow this country to move on – that is why we are holding this election. They now need to know where you stand when it comes to Brexit.
For months you have sought to avoid explaining what your plan is for Brexit, and instead spent considerable time and energy seeking to undermine the negotiations. particularly with the passing of the Surrender Act. Despite your best efforts, I secured a great deal with the EU which takes back control of our trade, laws, money and borders. You then blocked that deal, and forced yet another Brexit delay on the British people. This continued failure to honour the referendum result is undermining faith in our democracy and bringing uncertainty to our economy.
Your current position seems to be that you want to go back to square one. You want to throw out the great new deal we have reached with our European friends, and instead negotiate a whole new treaty from scratch. Even assuming the EU agrees to go back to the very beginning, this will take months and possibly years to do – under your proposals, 2020 will be lost to more dither and delay over Brexit. Voters also have the right to know: what would your supposed Brexit ‘deal’ actually take back control of?
For months you have refused to say what sort of ‘deal’ you want with the EU. Now the time has come for you to come clean, and explain what your plan really is so when the public vote on 12 December, they know what they are voting for:
- Do you believe the result of the 2016 referendum should he respected and the UK should leave the EU?
- Is the Labour Party’s policy to keep the UK in the customs union and would it end free movement in any deal it negotiates?
- Would you commit to campaigning for your ‘deal’ in a second referendum’?
- What is your supposed timetable to renegotiate a new deal and then hold a second referendum? I low much taxpayers’ money will you spend on holding this unwanted second referendum in 2020 and would this comply with Electoral Commission guidance on holding referendums?
- You rightly claim (for now at least) that the Liberal Democrat and SNP plan to revoke Article 50 is extreme – but if there is a hung Parliament you will depend on their votes. Will you confirm that, if there is a hung Parliament, you would never be willing to revoke Article 50?
- I and the voting public await your answers with interest. It is already clear that your plan will result in years’ more expensive delay and will prolong the divisions in our society.
If politicians force the public to vote again because they don’t like the result of a referendum, we will destroy all faith in our democratic process. Instead, we must show the British people that politicians can be trusted to honour their vote and get Brexit done immediately.
If I am elected Prime Minister, on Day 1 of a new Parliament we will start the process to Get Brexit Done and we will leave with the New Deal that is already agreed by the end of January — giving business and families the confidence to invest in our economy, and giving the British people a functioning government that is focusing on the issues that make a real difference in their lives like the NHS, schools and police.
I am clear about my Brexit policy and how we will help this country move on – it is time for the Labour Party to be clear too. We cannot afford to spend 2020 fighting two more referendums offering the public more of the same confusion and indecision that have plagued the last three years.
I look forward to hearing from you.