Brexit: Daubney sends ‘final Christmas message’ to PM
Addressing his viewers in a video posted on social media, Brexit Unlocked host Martin Daubney hailed Boris Johnson’s successful Brexit results as he claimed the Prime Minister had delivered the best Christmas present to the 17.4 million Britons who voted for Brexit in 2016. Speaking ahead of a Brexit Unlocked show to be streamed on the Daily Express Facebook page today at 5.30pm, he said: “We’ve been sending messages to Boris Johnson, our Prime Minister, all year about actually getting Brexit done.
“So it feels appropriate that for Christmas we’ve assembled a selection box of the sweetest Brexiteers from around the UK, Europe and beyond to send their final Christmas messages to the Prime Minister.
“Their backgrounds and their politics are diverse but one message rings through, and it’s this: ‘Prime Minister, you gave the 17.4 million the Christmas present they deserve and you will go down as an absolute legend’.
“So let’s have 17.4 million ho ho hoes, and plenty of no no noes to Michel Barnier and all the other cronies in Brussels.
“We fought tirelessly for Brexit all year but this is just the beginning. We’re going to be back bigger and better in 2021 to fight tirelessly to give you the media you deserve.”
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The European Union said on Friday there were just hours left to strike a Brexit trade deal while Britain called on the bloc to see sense as the two sides race to prevent a turbulent finale to the Brexit crisis at the end of the month.
Both sides are demanding the other compromise amid a flurry of often conflicting messages that, variously, a deal is possible, a deal is in serious trouble or that a deal is imminent.
Several hours after EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier told London that there were just hours left to navigate a narrow path towards a deal, Johnson said the British door was open but that the EU should see sense and compromise.
“It’s the moment of truth,” Barnier told the European Parliament in Brussels. “There is a chance of getting an agreement but the path to such an agreement is very narrow.”
Johnson said Britain would keep talking but that he would not compromise on taking back control of its laws and its fishing waters – which he sees as the fundamental point of leaving the EU.
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“Our door is open, we’ll keep talking but I have to say things are looking difficult,” Johnson told reporters. “We hope that our EU friends will see sense and come to the table with something themselves – because that’s really where we are.”
Britain formally left on January 31 after its 2016 referendum but since then, it has been in a transition period under which rules on trade, travel and business remain unchanged. That period ends on December 31.
Britain says the talks are stuck on two issues – the so-called level playing field and fishing – and has repeatedly said the EU has to budge or there will be no deal.
“We have very little time remaining, just a few hours to work through these negotiations in a useful fashion if we want this agreement to enter into force on the first of January,” Barnier said.
While Barnier said the sides were striving at an agreement, he said the 27-nation bloc would not sign a deal that would undercut its cherished single market of 450 million consumers.
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Johnson will ultimately have to decide whether to accept the narrow deal on offer from the EU or risk the economic chaos – and applause from hardline Brexiteers – that walking away would trigger.
EU powers are concerned London wants the best of both worlds – preferential access to EU markets but with the advantage of setting its own rules.
Johnson portrays Brexit as a chance to build a fully independent British economy that would be much more agile than its competitors, and so does not want to be tied into the EU’s orbit and its rules for years to come.
While Britain would keep talking as long as there was a chance of a deal, “we’ve also got to recognise that the UK’s got to be able to control its own laws, it’s what people voted for, and we’ve also got to be able to control our waters and fishing rights,” Johnson said.
Failure to agree a deal on goods trade would send shockwaves through financial markets, hurt European economies, snarl borders and disrupt supply chains.
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