We are making a mess of Brexit, admits Tory

PUBLISHED: 16:17 27 January 2019 | UPDATED: 09:46 28 January 2019

Andrea Jenkyns, MP for Morley and Outwood, addresses Conservative Party conference. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA.

Andrea Jenkyns, MP for Morley and Outwood, addresses Conservative Party conference. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA.

PA Archive/PA Images

Backbench Brexiteer MP Andrea Jenkyns has admitted that the Government has made a mess of Brexit but that they are stuck with PM Theresa May.

Speaking on Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday programme she hinted she might change her position in this week’s vote if they can get their own way. Jenkyns said there had been movement in the EU and gleefully reported that the EU was panicking and called for the government to “bin the backstop” completely.

She ridiculed Ireland’s attempts to protect the Good Friday agreement by avoiding a hard border, citing their heavy subsidies from the EU as self interest.

Reverting to WTO trade deal would give us a “competitive advantage” over the EU, she said.

But she admitted the government was making a mess and that “The Prime Minster is on borrowed time” but it is too late to get rid of her.

Government minister Damian Hinds has claimed there are ‘good things’ about the Irish backstop which makes up an integral part of the Government’s failed deal.

Speaking on Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday ahead of Tuesday’s vote on the PM’s already failed deal, the Education Secretary refused to choose between a no deal or a delay in Brexit. But he indicated that there was no wiggle room in negotiating changes to the backstop.

“The backstop is integral,” he said. “The backstop exists as a cast iron guarantee to avoid a hard border it’s an insurance policy.”

He said changing the deal was “not in the gift of either side” and that “there are some advantages to the backstop.”

Hinds, who voted with the Government’s record-breaking defeat on 21 January, “Very clear instructions came from people in the referendum. It’s up to everyone in parliament now to find the common ground.

“Prolonging these things doesn’t necessarily help you. Delaying kicks the can a bit further down the road.

Despite the overwhelming and record-breaking defeat in the House of Commons, Hinds is sticking to supporting the PM’s deal, claiming she has improved on the Norway and Canada that were originally on the table. “We’ve negotiated something better than that. It’s a good deal. It’s bespoke and tailored for Britain and better than those options.

“I prefer us to get on with it and get a negotiating deal there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to do that. I want us to focus all our energy to on that. That’s what I am totally focused on.”

So how will that happen “I’m sure there’s common ground we just have to find that. I’m not saying it’s a small task.”

He admitted that a “no deal would not be a good” but despite massive support against the deal by many of his fellow party members he blamed those who are “trying to thwart Brexit altogether”.

But he shifted the blame for the mess on to the results of 2016’s referendum. “We are doing what we are told to do by the British people.”

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