‘It’s do or die’: Boris ‘categorically’ rules out staying in the EU past October 31

Mr Johnson told told LBC: ‘It is vital, as a country, that we get ready to come out without an agreement if we must'

Mr Johnson told told LBC: ‘It is vital, as a country, that we get ready to come out without an agreement if we must'

Mr Johnson told told LBC: ‘It is vital, as a country, that we get ready to come out without an agreement if we must’

Boris Johnson warned that the country must ‘get ready to come out without an agreement if we must’ as he outlined his Brexit plans today – and categorically ruled out staying in the EU past October 31.

Mr Johnson said Halloween was a ‘do or die’ date for the UK quitting the block and fired a broadside at rebellious Tory MPs, warning the party would ‘continue to haemorrhage voters’ if Brexit was not sorted fast.   

It came after he was accused of flip-flopping over the date, telling a leadership husting at the weekend Halloween was ’eminently feasible’ but not saying anything more concrete.

The Tory leadership front runner was grilled by radio stations LBC and TalkRadio on his plan for leaving the EU as Jeremy Corbyn‘s Labour and some of his own Remainer colleagues seek to block his route to a No Deal Brexit.

He told TalkRadio: ‘We will of course be putting our plan into action so we are ready to come out on October 31. Come what may. Do or die.’ 

Asked if he could ‘categorically rule out an extension’ past October 31, he said: ‘Yes.’ 

It came after he was accused of flip-flopping over the date, telling a leadership husting at the weekend Halloween was 'eminently feasible' but not saying anything more concrete.

It came after he was accused of flip-flopping over the date, telling a leadership husting at the weekend Halloween was 'eminently feasible' but not saying anything more concrete.

It came after he was accused of flip-flopping over the date, telling a leadership husting at the weekend Halloween was ’eminently feasible’ but not saying anything more concrete.

Mr Johnson also reiterated his plans for Brexit, with his preferred choice being to ‘get rid of this current Withdrawal Agreement and get the best bits in it, put them through Parliament’.

He also reiterated his desire to withhold the £39billion Brexit ‘divorce bill’ from Brussels until the UK gets a deal it wants and to sort out the Irish border.

Boris’s Brexit options

Boris Johnson set out his preferred options for handling Brexit before October 31 today.

Across several interviews he set out his first choice –  a deal with the EU with all the worst bits removed or changed. He then outlined what would happen if that was not possible.

  • Plan A: The non-controversial parts of Theresa May’s deal, with the Irish border backstop removed and a threat to Brussels to withhold the £39billion Brexit ‘divorce bill’ unless the UK gets a deal it wants. But the EU has long refused to renegotiate the WA, with is why it never got through Parliament the first time.
  • Plan B: A ‘standstill’ agreement under article 24 of the international General Agreement on Tariff and Trade (GATT). He argues that this allows the UK and EU to trade tariff free – as they do now – until they agree a proper free trade agreement. But economists including Bank of England boss Mark Carney and International Trade Secretary Liam Fox say this interpretation of the rules is wrong. 
  • Plan C: A No Deal Brexit on or before October 31. He says the UK can be and has to be ready to leave on Halloween without a deal if the first two options fail. Supporters say this can be done with a minimum of delays and effect on jobs. But critics say this will have a hugely damaging effect on UK PLC, especially companies that rely on foreign sales and supply lines.

Asked about his ‘Plan B’ he said it was to get a ‘standstill’ agreement under the international General Agreement on Tariff and Trade (GATT), something that leading economists including Bank of England Governor Mark Carney have said is not possible.

Mr Johnson added: ‘If the EU won’t do that and we have to come out on WTO terms then Plan C would be to get ready for that outcome. 

‘And obviously we’re going to do that and it’s very, very important that we do. And the British people have had enough of being told that they’re incapable of getting ready to do this.’ 

The former foreign secretary had earlier told LBC: ‘It is vital, as a country, that we get ready to come out without an agreement if we must.’

He lashed out at the EU as well over tariffs, saying it would be a ‘a return to Napoleon’s continental system’ if they took the ‘bizarre’ step of reintroducing them. 

In a wide-ranging and tricky interview with LBC’s Nick Ferrari Mr Johnson warned the Tories would ‘continue to haemorrhage voters’ if the UK did not leave the EU.

He claimed that ‘politics has totally changed’ since March 29 and ‘we are staring down the barrel of defeat’.

He said: ‘People are looking at this thing and thinking ‘Parliament is just not going to do this’.

‘But, actually, I think they are.’

Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd had earlier called on Boris Johnson to spell out the details of his Brexit plan. 

Ms Rudd, who supports his rival Jeremy Hunt, said: ‘This is an incredibly difficult situation and Boris needs to explain how he will deal with both sides of the Conservative Party that have concerns and try and break the impasse with the European Union. 

Mr Johnson was grilled by LBC's Nick Ferrari before taking listeners' questions

Mr Johnson was grilled by LBC's Nick Ferrari before taking listeners' questions

Mr Johnson was grilled by LBC’s Nick Ferrari before taking listeners’ questions

Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd (pictured arriving at today's Cabinet meeting) had earlier called on Boris Johnson to spell out the details of his Brexit plan.

Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd (pictured arriving at today's Cabinet meeting) had earlier called on Boris Johnson to spell out the details of his Brexit plan.

Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd (pictured arriving at today’s Cabinet meeting) had earlier called on Boris Johnson to spell out the details of his Brexit plan.

‘Enthusiasm and optimism is not sufficient.’

Responding to claims that a dozen Tory MPs would be prepared to bring down a government heading to a no-deal Brexit, she told BBC Radio 4’s Today: ‘I think that’s about right. I think it’s slightly less than that but it’s certainly more than two.’ 

The new Conservative Party leader and Prime minister will be unveiled on July 23. 

What happens now?Tory leadership rivals face three weeks of hustings in front of the party faithful

Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson face four weeks of campaign events where they will set out their stall to the 160,000 Conservative members who will decide who enters No10.

The party has organised 16 hustings events across the country – with the first having taken place in Birmingham over the weekend.

There are also a series of head-to-head TV debates mooted. Mr Johnson has refused to sign up to a Sky News show tomorrow, but is expected to take part in an ITV special on July 9.   A new leader will be announced on the week of July 22. 

June 26: Digital Hustings

June 27:  South (Central)

June 28: South West

June 29: Lakes & Borders

June 29: North West

July 4: Yorkshire & Humber

July 5: North East

July 5: Scotland

July 6: East Midlands

July 6: Wales

July 11: South East

July 12: Gloucestershire

July 13 Cambridgeshire

July 13: Essex

July 17: London

TBC: Northern Ireland

 July 22: New leader announced

link

(Visited 4 times, 1 visits today)

Loading...

Leave a Reply