Jeremy Vine: Ann Widdecombe shuts down Brexit criticism
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Ann Widdecombe has shut down the criticism that Brexit is to blame for everything while praising Britain’s success with the vaccination programme and the new military agreement struck with Australia and the US. The brutal slapdown came after Boris Johnson’s face-to-face talks with Joe Biden at the White House this week, during which the US president played down the chances of brokering a post-Brexit free trade deal with the UK.
Speaking to Jeremy Vine on Five, Ms Widdecombe said: “The fact is you’ve shown Obama. You very carefully didn’t show Trump, who took a much more positive attitude.
“Now we’ve got a president who’s taking a not-so-positive attitude.
“We’ve known that. We’ve known that ever since Biden got elected.
“But I really think it is a farce to take one thing and say that was the whole point of Brexit, and if that doesn’t happen Brexit’s failed.
She went on: “Liz Truss has actually negotiated a few 100 trade deals. Nobody says, ‘Ah Brexit succeeded’.
“We’ve had this recent submarine deal, nobody said, ‘Ah, jolly good for Brexit’.
“We had this vaccination success. Nobody said, ‘jolly good for Brexit’.
“Anything goes wrong, and people say, ‘Ah, it’s Brexit. It’s failed’.”
She added: “Now I think this was always going to be a tough one.
“I don’t actually think it was ever low-hanging fruit.
“It would have been lower hanging fruit with Trump.”
Joe Biden suggested he had no intention of handing Boris Johnson a win on trade prior to the PM’s visit to the White House yesterday.
Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office before the talks, Mr Biden said the pair would discuss trade “a little bit”, adding: “We’re going to have to work that through.”
A trade deal with the US would encourage trade by making it cheaper – usually by reducing or eliminating taxes called tariffs.
Democratic Congressman Rep Brendan Boyle told BBC Newsnight: “We have no plan, meetings on any sort of perspective US–UK trade deal.
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