Julia Hartley-Brewer slammed Theresa May’s Brexit position, saying the Prime Minister had “failed” to deliver a “decent negotiation position”, and that she might have liked to have seen how Donald Trump handled Brexit.
The PM is facing a Commons showdown with Tory Brexiteers determined to force her to abandon her controversial blueprint for leaving the European Union.
Joining Hartley-Brewer on the No Nonsense Breakfast Show, Sir Bernard Jenkin, Tory MP for Harwich and North Essex, said the UK has no choice but to press on with leaving the EU.
“Because of the EU’s refusal to negotiate, we just have to leave,” he said.
‘We need to leave and move ahead with Trump deal’
“First of all, if there’s no deal at all we wouldn’t have to pay any money to the EU, and we could spend the money on ameliorating any disruption that might arise.
“Secondly, we’re in instant control of all our regulations, our tariff schedules, we can move instantly to do that great trade deal president Trump wants to do with us, we don’t have to wait for years for that customs deal to bed down.
“Finally if there is disruption, if the EU blocks aircraft landing at European airports, people will see what a vindictive and destructive organisation the EU has become.”
Responding to his suggestions, Hartley-Brewer said: “The reality is, it’s a total abject failure by the PM to deliver a decent negotiation position.
“Maybe I would have liked Donald Trump to be in charge of those negotiations!”
EU ‘highly likely’ to reject Chequers proposal
“This Chequers proposal is the last throw of the dice of the establishment view that you have to find some middle way between leaving and staying in the EU,” continued Sir Bernard.
“It’s highly likely the EU will reject this, this deal offends their principles. I think they’ll find it very difficult to swallow, and when they don’t accept it, we must just say, ‘right, we’re leaving, either you give us a sensible withdrawal agreement… is the European Union mad? They want to put tariffs on goods from the UK?’”
“I wouldn’t put it past them,” responded Hartley-Brewer.
“OK, we’ll stick tariffs on their imports and raise an extra £19 billion a year and use that to cut business taxes and make ourselves more competitive until the EU sees sense,” Sir Bernard said.
Justine Greening backing second referendum
MPs are set to vote today (July 16) on a series of Commons amendments intended to wreck her Chequers plan for a "common rule book" covering a new "UK-EU free trade area".
Former education secretary Justine Greening, meanwhile, called for a second referendum, saying in an article for the Times: “The only solution is to take the final Brexit decision out of the hands of deadlocked politicians, away from the backroom deals, and give it back to the people.”