A furious reaction to the first batch of no-deal Brexit preparation papers has come in from across the UK. The documents have shown up the UK’s no-deal plans as a bluff that was “fooling no-one”, said Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones. “The writing is on the wall,” he said.
“No-deal would be a catastrophic failure of the UK Government that would cause huge disruption and serious, long-lasting economic and social damage to all parts of the UK.
“No-deal is not an option and the UK Government’s bluff is fooling no-one.”
Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said Mr Raab’s speech was “thin on detail, thin on substance and provided no answers to how ministers intend to mitigate the serious consequences of leaving the EU without an agreement”.
“We are eight weeks out from the deadline for reaching an agreement.
“Ministers should be getting on the job of negotiating a Brexit deal that works for Britain, not publishing vague documents that will convince no-one,” he said.
“A no-deal Brexit has never been viable and would represent a complete failure of the Government’s negotiating strategy.”
Best for Britain champion David Lammy MP said the papers showed Conservatives were “playing Russian roulette with our economy”.
He said: “Dominic Raab’s papers are nothing more than a cynical ploy to make whatever pathetic deal the Government brings back from Brussels look less terrible in comparison.
“Today shows that no matter how you voted in 2016, you need a say on the final Brexit deal. No-one voted for this disaster.”
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said the reports confirmed no-deal Brexit was not a credible option. “It would be devastating for working people,” she said. “The Government cannot allow us to crash out.
“The Prime Minister must throw out her red lines, face down the extremists in her party, and negotiate a deal that works for the whole of the UK.”
GMB national secretary Jude Brimble said, having told the public a trade deal would be easiest thing in the world, the Government was now preparing for chaos.
She said: “This Conservative Government is gambling with UK industry and people’s livelihoods. In their frantic scramble to keep the party and fragile coalition together they are showing an utter contempt for the British public.
“Ministers said a trade deal would be the easiest thing in the world and now with a few months to go we are preparing for chaos.”