May rules out extending Brexit deadline after PMQs clash with Corbyn – as it happened
Wednesday’s political developments, including Philip Hammond’s evidence to the Treasury committee and Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn at PMQs
Two different cabinet sources say [Hammond’s] comments today come on top of a row at cabinet yesterday over precisely this issue, an exchange described as “robust”.
Number 10 acknowledges that there was a brief discussion of the preparation for the “no deal” scenario, although they deny (as they would) that there was anything like a ding-dong.
But one of the cabinet sources suggests Mr Hammond’s behaviour is either “deliberate and divisive or politically stupid”.
I was a bit surprised. I thought she was going to say, ‘Yes, I voted remain then, but now I’m wholeheartedly for - ’, so on and so forth … That’s what I would have expected her to do ...
If you’re negotiating with someone, it’s very important that you negotiate with people who you think in their heart of hearts really believe what they’re doing.
It’s not a very good way of negotiating for a team, if the captain of the team doesn’t seem to be particularly persuaded that they want to stick the ball in the other net.
Mac Flynn raised concerns about proposals previously outlined by the UK that only large businesses rather than small or medium ones could be required to register their imports and exports along a post-Brexit border, saying people could find ways to get around such rules. He told MPs:
I think the danger is, we could start out with a soft border and end up with a hard border. Like the exemption for small and medium sized enterprises.
The idea was first that they were going to say that for 6% to 8% of heavy goods vehicles.
If you’re somebody who is going to want to get around a tariff border, all that says to you is – right, don’t use trucks, use vans. Then we start checking vans, so we say we’ll start using estate cars. Before you know it, we’re checking everyone.
I think it has to come down to this - if you’re leaving the customs union, that has an implication for what the border in Northern Ireland is going to look like. Say that one is being sacrificed to the other, but at least be honest about it.
I’ve been very clear. We want those negotiations to end - not just the negotiations to end, we want to have an agreement on the future relationship, and our withdrawal – by March 2019, and we will leave the EU on March 2019.
When we have left the European Union, we will be leaving the common fisheries policy. As part of the agreement that we need to enter into for the implementation period, obviously this and other issues will be part of that agreement. But when we leave the European Union, we will leave the common fisheries policy.
This is similar to the language May uses about the single market; she says that although the UK will technically leave in March 2019, she envisages a transition period during which the UK will continue to participate in the single market on much the same terms as now.
All of us had to make a judgment on what we thought the future would look like. I made a judgment thinking it would be bad for the economy. Since we have left, it has been more positive, so the facts have changed and I have changed my mind.
Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, also recently said he had changed from backing remain to backing leave because the gloomy economic predictions about Brexit had failed to materialise.
Any safety-critical work that is required needs to be carried out. We will not allow a situation to arise where a housing authority or a social landlord, due to lack of financial resource, cannot carry out safety-critical work. That does not mean the government will automatically step in and provide funding for that safety-critical work.
Generally Corbyn is seen as the winner, although that’s not the universal view.
Corbyn won PMQs hands down. His perception of moral authority is a weapon & on questions of poverty, welfare etc it is deadly for the Tories
PM was v hesitant on U Credit but Corbyn widens out attack to broad govt and May has found a bit of spirit back
MPs back from conference & PMQ's has come back to life. Corbyn has fight in him as does May Used to feel like a very one-sided duel. No more
Tough PMQs for PM. Corbyn knows how to do this now -one difficult issue, with Tory splits, top off with general attack, backed up by Tory MP
Tory back-benchers saved her a bit at the end. But Corbyn won that one.
Now it's the turn of Corbyn spokesman to be asked how JC would vote in a second EU referendum: "There isn't any referendum in prospect now."
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The mood was relief in the Number 10 team this morning, as it was confirmed that they had got there in the end.