Boris Johnson and his “wealthy friends” won’t bear the cost of a “reckless” no-deal Brexit, Jeremy Corbyn will say at the TUC congress in Brighton on Tuesday, before asserting that Labour is “ready” for an election and set “to unleash the biggest people-powered campaign we’ve ever seen”.
In his keynote speech at the annual trade union conference, the Labour leader is set to argue that the Tories would “hijack” the 2016 referendum result and use no deal to “shift even more power and wealth to those at the top”.
Comparing no deal to the 2008 financial crash that saw “tens of millions of people who had nothing to do with it” pay for the consequences, Corbyn will warn that the government would seize the opportunity to “push through policies that benefit them and their super-rich supporters”.
“Be in no doubt, a no deal Brexit is really a Trump deal Brexit, leading to a one-sided US trade deal negotiated from a position of weakness,” Corbyn will reiterate, having used the anti-Trump line against no deal several times over the last few weeks.
“It will put us at the mercy of Trump and the big US corporations itching to get their teeth further into our NHS, sound the death knell for our steel industry, and permanently drive down rights and protections for workers. I am not prepared to stand by and let that happen.”
On the question of Labour’s support for an early general election, the opposition leader will outline and hope to clarify the party position with an emphasis on the Prime Minister’s lack of trustworthiness.
“Our priority is, first, to stop no deal, and then to trigger a general election,” Corbyn is expected to say. “Amber Rudd’s resignation confirmed that the government is not serious about trying to get a deal in Brussels. As the Prime Minister’s top adviser reportedly said, the negotiations are ‘a sham’.
“No one can trust the word of a Prime Minister who is threatening to break the law to force through no deal. So a general election is coming. But we won’t allow Johnson to dictate the terms. And I can tell you this: we’re ready for that election. We’re ready to unleash the biggest people-powered campaign we’ve ever seen.”