Marc François appears downbeat about Boris Johnson’s Brexit proposals

PUBLISHED: 09:32 16 October 2019 | UPDATED: 14:54 16 October 2019

Mark Francois interviewed by Sky News. Photograph: Sky.

Mark Francois interviewed by Sky News. Photograph: Sky.

Archant

After warnings from the Tory Brexiteer that the country would ‘explode’ if the UK does not leave the EU on October 31st, Marc François has become strangely subdued.

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The outspoken Brexiteer had very little to say when approached by reporters about the compromises from Boris Johnson that could lead to a deal.

He had been attending a meeting of the European Research Group inside Downing Street.

Chairman Steve Baker, who said the "constructive talks" were not with the PM, left feeling "optimistic" that a "tolerable deal" might be reached.

But former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith left less upbeat, with reports claiming he stormed out of the meeting.

Mark François was not giving much away when he spoke to Sky News reporters.

MORE: Tory Brexiteer MP says 'country will explode' if we don't leave EU on October 31st

"Were you happy with what you heard, sir?" asked a reporter as he left the government building.

"It was interesting," said the Brexiteer, less chipper than usual.

"You don't look very happy, sir?" continued the reporter.

MORE: Mark Francois interrupted by stop Brexit protester"Well there will be further chats to have," said François.

"So you don't like what you've heard so far, is it fair to say?" asked the reporter once more.

"What's upset you about it?" asked another.

Francois continued: "I'm not going to discuss it, gentlemen, I'm sorry about that... As I said, I'm not going to discuss it, it was a private discussion."

The ERG member had been previously assured by Boris Johnson that he would not try to revive Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement.

He had said: "If there were any attempt to revive the Withdrawal Agreement, even without the backstop, the ERG would vote against it."

"He said many times during the campaign that the Withdrawal Agreement is dead. I believe him," François said, adding he believed Brussels would "blink" and agree to talks on a free trade deal instead.

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