Opinion Politics

Theresa “Mayhem” in a Tory Brexit shambles at PMQs!

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On Wednesday 12 October, at Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) Jeremy Corbyn criticised Prime Minister Theresa May for pursuing a “shambolic Tory Brexit” to appease her right wing backbenchers.

In a heated PMQs, Corbyn quoted May’s own words when she warned of the “risk of a loss of investors and business” if Britain left the single market. He also reminded the PM that before becoming the new leader of the Conservative Party, she also warned that such move would “risk going backwards”.

Corbyn then called out potential “Brexit Mayhem”, as the Tories have no real plan for negotiating our exit of the EU.

He told PMQs:

“This is a government that drew up no plans for Brexit, that now has no plan for negotiating Brexit. The jobs and incomes of millions of our people are at stake”.

Corbyn then launched his best line against May’s lack of Brexit strategy and said that the PM had:

“no strategy for negotiating Brexit and offers no clarity, no transparency and no chance of scrutiny of the process for developing a strategy”.

Meanwhile, he said, it was “worrying” to see the pound falling.

But May failed to say whether she would stay in the single market, and in fact went in the other direction, saying that there should be “maximum possible access for firms to the European market”, but the government must respect the Brexit vote.

In other words, May simply refused to give any indication on what she intends to do once she triggers Article 50 in March, and the Brexit negotiations start.

Corbyn also asked if “the Prime Minister [was] really willing to risk a shambolic Tory Brexit just to please the people behind her?”

As always with the PM, every time she is on the defensive she tries to attack Labour on its policies. On Wednesday, she questioned Labour’s own European stance and what the party thinks of the Brexit result:

“Labour didn’t want a referendum. We gave one. Labour didn’t like the result. We are listening and delivering on that result. The Shadow Foreign Secretary wants a second vote. I would have thought Labour MPs would have learnt their lesson. You can ask the question but you will still get the answer you don’t want.”

As the pound gets weaker and weaker, and the early signs of an economic slowdown are materialising, the PM should have found a better way to answer the serious questions asked by the leader of the opposition.

Twitter’s verdict:

Kevin Maguire quite rightly said that Corbyn has exposed May’s vacuity on Brexit’s economic fallout:

Labour MP Wes Streeting was quite disappointed by May’s lack of professionalism. Yes, Brexit is a serious matter, Prime Minister:

Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner also noticed the lack of professionalism from the PM:

But more worrying for May, was that even the Telegraph found that Corbyn was winning the argument on Brexit:

Scisco’s verdict:

Overall it was a good performance from Corbyn. He has exposed May’s shambolic Brexit plan (is there even a plan, anyway?) by asking serious questions of the PM.

But all we have learned today from the May is that she has refused to commit keeping Britain in the single market, but she hasn’t still explained what “Brexit would really mean” – and this is deeply worrying.

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