Bob Blackman MP on Corbyn meeting Barnier: ‘It does not help Britain one iota’

Bob Blackman MP on Corbyn meeting Barnier: ‘It does not help Britain one iota’

Friday, September 28, 2018

Conservative MP Bob Blackman has said that Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn meeting EU Chief negotiator Michel Barnier does not help Britain “one iota”.

Mr Blackman, the MP for Harrow East told talkRADIO’s Julia Hartley-Brewer: “The reality is the Prime Minister is negotiating with EU leaders, Dominic Raab is our Secretary of State leading the day-to-day negotiations with Michel Barnier.

“And, all of our officials are involved in extensive talks to try and get to a point where by a deal is made.

“If you strengthen the position on the other side, to give them some comfort then that undermines the very negotiations that are going on.

“It does not help Britain’s position one iota."


‘Ambitious future partnership’

Mr Corbyn described the meeting with the EU negotiator as “useful”, but told reporters that he was not negotiating.

The Labour leader joined Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer at the meeting.

Mr Corbyn, speaking after the meeting, said: "We have set out the views of the Labour Party surrounding Brexit following the conference speeches made by Keir Starmer and myself.

"We are obviously not negotiating. We are not in government, we are the opposition.

"But he was interested to know what our views are and the six tests we have laid down by which we will hold our government in future."

Mr Barnier said on twitter: “Meeting with Jeremy Corbyn and his team today.

“Continuing to listen to all views on Brexit and to explain EU positions, which aim for the UK’s orderly withdrawal and to build an ambitious future partnership together.”


‘She enjoys the confidence of MPs’

Mr Blackman was also asked whether the Prime Minister’s days were numbered, following a series of major rejections by EU leaders.

President of the European Council, Donald Tusk said last week that Theresa May’s Chequers plan “will not work”.

Mr Blackman said: “Following the 2017 General Election, Theresa May made a point to the Conservative MPs that she knows it is a matter of building and maintaining the confidence of Conservative MPs.

“She enjoys the confidence of the overwhelming majority of Conservative MPs right now.

“And, as long as she continues to lead the party in the right way she will continue to enjoy that confidence.”