Damian Green called for all economic forecasting of the UK’s withdrawal plans to be released and for the public to be allowed an open debate on how the country should proceed.
Whitehall documents recently predicted the UK would be worse off after withdrawal regardless of whether it secures an EU trade deal, sparking anger from Tory right-wingers who accused the civil service of trying to sabotage Brexit.
But in a move that threatens to lever open Conservative Brexit divisions ahead of a crunch Cabinet meeting this week Mr Green rejected their claims as ‘conspiracy theories’.
Speaking in a BBC interview to be broadcast this evening he said: ‘There’s a great problem of politicians who won’t accept evidence’.
Michel Barnier met with Mr Farage in Brussels on 8 January to discuss the state of Brexit negotiations as part of his ‘open door’ policy of meeting people interested in the talks.
Though the full contents of the meeting have not been disclosed Mr Barnier told British MPs at another similar meeting that he had warned Mr Farage that he would have to ‘live with the consequences’ of Brexit.
‘It is the UK that is establishing these red lines – which are closing or opening certain doors.
It is not us’ Mr Barnier told MPs from the Northern Ireland select committee on their visit – according to an official transcript.
‘I was explaining this to Mr Farage and a number of other people responsible for the Brexit campaign the other day – who I am sure some of you are familiar with.
I said to him ‘You have to be aware of the consequences of your decisions.
It is not up to us to assume these consequences.
There is no reason for this.
You have taken a decision and you have to live with the consequences’.
The German chancellor said she had been trapped in a recurring conversation with the British Prime Minister since the EU referendum in 2016.
Speaking to a ‘secret’ press meeting at the World Economic Forum in Davos Ms Merkel claimed Ms May had repeatedly asked her to ‘make me an offer’ according to a report by ITV political pundit Robert Peston.
Ms Merkel said that when she replied ‘but you’re leaving – we don’t have to make you an offer.
Come on what do you want?’.
Ms May replied again ‘Make me an offer’.’And so according to Mrs Merkel the two find themselves trapped in a recurring loop of ‘what do you want?’ and ‘make me an offer’..
The UK will be worse off after Brexit regardless of the terms of its departure from the EU – according to a leaked Government impact assessment.
Economic analysis prepared by Whitehall officials for the Department for Exiting the EU (DexEU) concluded growth would decline in each of three possible scenarios it modelled.
Almost every sector of the economy and every region of the UK would negatively impacted – according to a leaked copy of the document..
Britain could still ‘change its mind’ about Brexit at this late stage and return to be a member of the European Union – the two highest officials in the European Union have said.
Speaking at the European Parliament in Strasbourg – European Council president Donald Tusk said that Europeans’ ‘hearts are still open’ to ‘our British friends’ to remain in the bloc.
‘If the UK government sticks to its decision to leave Brexit will become a reality with all its negative consequences in March next year unless there is a change of heart among our British friends’ he told MEPs.
Quoting the Brexit Secretary he added: ‘Wasn’t it David Davis himself who said ‘if a democracy cannot change its mind it ceases to be a democracy’? We here on the continent haven’t had a change of heart – our hearts are still open to you’.
He was immediately backed up by Jean-Claude Juncker – the President of the European Commission.
‘President Tusk also made some comments on Brexit – he said that our door remains open.
I hope that will be heard clearly in London’ Mr Juncker added.