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Theresa May refuses to say her deal is better than staying in EU, during live radio phone-in

Prime minister dodges question on whether she would resign if MPs voted against the agreement

Friday 23 November 2018 12:33 GMT
Theresa May faces public interrogation in live radio phone-in as Brexit negotiations with Europe continue

Theresa May refused to say her Brexit deal was better than staying in the EU when she answered questions from the public on live radio.

The prime minister also dodged a question on whether she would resign if MPs voted against the agreement, but insisted that Brussels would not offer better terms.

She appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live on Friday afternoon a few hours after former Brexit secretary Dominic Raab hit out at the deal, branding it as "even worse than remaining."

EU diplomats are meeting to finalise the draft divorce between Britain and the bloc, with Spain threatening to oppose any deal that does not give it a say on the future of Gibraltar.

Please allow a moment for our liveblog to load


Hello and welcome to The Independent's coverage of the day's Brexit events.

Joe Sommerlad23 November 2018 10:56

So far today, ex-Brexit minister Dominic Raab has criticised Theresa May's deal on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, saying; "I'm not going to advocate staying in the EU.

"But, if you just presented me terms, this deal or EU membership, because we would effectively be bound by the same rules but without the control or voice over them, yes, I think this would be even worse than that."

Joe Sommerlad23 November 2018 11:08

Meanwhile, Spain's PM Pedro Sanchez has threatened to oppose the current divorce deal between the UK and Europe, tweeting that Britain and Spain "remain far away" on the issue of Gibraltar and "if there are no changes, we will veto Brexit."

Joe Sommerlad23 November 2018 11:11

Dominic Raab claimed that Parliament would "inevitably" vote down Theresa May's deal as he described it as "even worse" than staying in the EU.

Peter Stubley23 November 2018 11:50

The former Brexit secretary has also rejected the suggestion he will campaign for a second referendum, insisting he will "fight for a better Brexit."

Peter Stubley23 November 2018 11:51

Arron Banks, the businessman who is believed to have donated £8.4m to the Leave campaign, has also said that it would be better to stay in the EU than approve Theresa May's deal.

He tweeted: "Remain is a better choice than this capitulation.. sadly."

Peter Stubley23 November 2018 11:54

Theresa May will be taking questions from the public about Brexit on BBC Radio 5 Live in around 20 minutes (12.30pm). What would you like to ask the prime minister?

Peter Stubley23 November 2018 12:08

We're expecting the 5Live phone-in with Theresa May to begin imminently. Stay tuned...

Benjamin Kentish23 November 2018 12:31

It's put to May that her deal has divided the country. She admits people have had "really passionate arguments" about Brexit but that it is "time for the country to come together". Her deal will help achieve that, she says.

Benjamin Kentish23 November 2018 12:37

The first caller asks if May thinks she will get her deal through Parliament. 

The prime minister says her job is to persuade people. She says MPs need to remember that people's jobs, education and communities must be at the forefront of their mind when they decide how to vote on the proposed agreement.

Benjamin Kentish23 November 2018 12:39

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