Brexit means Brexit? It's clear the Government hasn't got a clue

May is unprepared - they must stop threatening to invoke Article 50 without Parliament's consent.

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After the refusal of the Prime Minister to reveal the smallest hint of a negotiating strategy for leaving the EU, whoever leaked the memo revealed in The Times today has done a great service to our country. Finally, in all its glory, it seems we can see some of the hard work the Government is engaging in to make, as the spokespeople always state like a broken record, 'Brexit a success'.

Even better, it seems this memo reveals the fruits of all this labour, only it's disturbingly apparent that so far the Prime Minister has reaped little clarity and substance from Whitehall's trials and tribulations. Since its leak, government has claimed the memo, entitled "Brexit Update" from 7 November, was not a government report, however.

As someone who, whilst not believing that leaving the EU was the right decision for our country, always wants to see the UK as prosperous as possible, this serves as a reminder that the Government simply haven't any idea how to cope with all that Brexit entails.

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Seemingly every department has officials desperately trying to find the means to take on the hundreds of projects which have arisen as a result of leaving the EU. A memo which talks of businesses pointing 'a gun at the government's head', also presents a picture of panic engulfing all parts of our Government.

To make matters worse again we can see the clear divisions within the Prime Minister's cabinet, creating chasms of inaction which will only serve to damage our country's economy and reduce our credibility when negotiations with the EU start. I hope that Theresa May will start heeding the caution her Chancellor and the Treasury have been signalling, rather than following the delusional cavalier approach which the 'three Brexiteers' have taken, an approach built on falsehoods in exactly the same way as the Leave Campaign.

This should shake up not just to the Government, or Parliament, but the whole country. A Government as unprepared to deal with the practical results of the referendum result as this one needs to put an end to the cocky talk and gung-ho tactics of threatening to invoke Article 50 without Parliament's consent.

It's obvious that this Government needs all the help they can get, so one piece of advice I have to give the Prime Minister is please provide a platform in Parliament where MPs from across the House can debate the matters which have flummoxed the Government and provide advice or suggestions. We can help you. To shun our expertise and to continue down a path of panic, with no coherent negotiating strategy across departments, would be a disservice to this country.


Tom Brake is Liberal Democrat MP for Carshalton and Wallington


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