Rob Merrick, The Independent

Rob Merrick

The Independent

United Kingdom

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Recent articles by Rob:

Brexit: Warning for Labour as poll finds voters will forgive Boris Johnson if he breaks ‘do or die’ pledge to leave EU

Most pro-Brexit voters will forgive Boris Johnson if he breaks his promise of a “do or die” departure from the EU this month, according to a poll that will send shock waves through Labour. → Read More

Boris Johnson hints at major Brexit climbdown with Northern Ireland customs union remarks

Boris Johnson has hinted at a major concession to the EU to rescue a Brexit deal by refusing to say that Northern Ireland would leave the customs union. → Read More

Corbyn to step down as leader if Labour doesn’t win general election, McDonnell says

Jeremy Corbyn will quit if Labour loses the general election expected within months, says his key ally John McDonnell – promising to follow him out of the door. The shadow chancellor insisted Labour could win a Commons majority – despite the party’s disastrous poll ratings – but admitted the price of failure would be resignation. → Read More

Can the Queen sack Boris Johnson if he refuses to quit after MPs pass a no-confidence vote?

The unnamed No 10 rent-a-gobs who speak for Boris Johnson insist he will defy even an order from the Queen to give up power – even if the Brexit crisis leads to MPs voting him out. The prime minister will “squat” in Downing Street, rather than quit, if the Commons passes a vote of no confidence in him and tries to install a caretaker replacement, the headlines scream. → Read More

Brexit: Labour MPs bombard Jeremy Corbyn with calls for him to back fresh referendum before general election

Labour MPs are blitzing Jeremy Corbyn with demands for a U-turn that would see him throw his weight behind a fresh Brexit referendum before a general election. The whips’ office is receiving “dozens of phone calls”, The Independent understands – reflecting the “almost unanimous” support amongst rank-and-file MPs for a Final Say vote to come first. → Read More

Brexit: Tory MPs threaten mass walk-out if No 10 forces party to back no-deal at general election

Moderate Tories have threatened Boris Johnson with a mass walk-out if No 10 tries to make the party back a no-deal Brexit explicitly at a snap general election. The suggestion, made by a No 10 aide – widely believed to be Dominic Cummings – triggered a backlash from members of the ‘One Nation’ caucus, who demanded a meeting with the prime minister. → Read More

Brexit: Parliament to sit on a Saturday for first time in 37 years in last-ditch Boris Johnson bid to stop delay

Boris Johnson is preparing a dramatic Saturday sitting of parliament later this month in a last-gasp attempt to avoid having to ask the EU for a Brexit delay. MPs will be recalled on 19 October, even if there is no agreement to vote on – and forced instead to choose between crashing out of the EU 12 days later or extending the Article 50 process. → Read More

Brexit: UK at greater risk of terrorism and organised crime if it leaves EU with no deal, government admits

Britain will be at greater risk from terrorism and organised crime if it crashes out of the EU without a deal, a government document has admitted. → Read More

Boris Johnson's Brexit plan in tatters as Angela Merkel personally rejects it

Angela Merkel personally rejected Boris Johnson's Brexit proposals in a phone call between the two leaders on Tuesday, effectively burying the plan. The German chancellor stood solidly behind the EU's criticisms of the blueprint, which would see the reintroduction of customs checks on goods moving between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. → Read More

Brexit: Ex-Cabinet minister Amber Rudd ready to back second referendum as she attacks 'desperate' Boris Johnson

Amber Rudd says she is ready to back a fresh Brexit referendum to end the deepening crisis, as she blasted Boris Johnson as “desperate” and without a plan. The former home secretary suggested more and more MPs feared a general election would be just as “divisive” and fail to solve the crisis – potentially making a referendum a better option. → Read More

UK already up to £66bn poorer because of Brexit vote, study shows

The UK is already up to a staggering £66bn poorer because of the Brexit vote after economic growth evaporated, experts warn today. → Read More

Boris Johnson refuses to say he will cooperate with Jennifer Arcuri inquiry, as deadline looms

Boris Johnson has refused to say he will cooperate with an inquiry into whether he granted favours to Jennifer Arcuri, with a deadline just 24 hours away. → Read More

UK voters would choose to stop Brexit if given another referendum, Irish premier says

The British public would vote to stop Brexit if it was given the opportunity, says Irish premier Leo Varadkar, as he rejected Boris Johnson’s new plans. “All the polls since prime minister Johnson became prime minister suggest that's what the British people actually want, but their political system isn't able to give them that choice,” Mr Varadkar said. → Read More

'Not fit for purpose': Ireland says it 'cannot possibly' support Boris Johnson's Brexit plan

Ireland's deputy prime minister has said his country "cannot possibly" support Boris Johnson's Brexit plan, and encouraged the UK to come back with something "fit for purpose". Speaking in the country's parliament on Thursday Simon Coveney echoed EU concerns about customs checks and a built-in veto for the Northern Ireland Assembly that are included the policy. → Read More

New Boris Johnson move to prorogue parliament will force Queen 'to make party political broadcast', constitutional expert warns

Boris Johnson will be using the Queen “to make a Conservative Party political broadcast” if he launches a new session of parliament just weeks before a general election, a constitutional expert is warning. → Read More

Brexit: UK sets European Union two-day deadline to begin talks on Boris Johnson's new plan

The UK has set the EU a deadline of just two days to begin intensive talks on Boris Johnson’s new Brexit proposals, risking a new rupture in relations with Brussels. Stephen Barclay, the Brexit secretary, said negotiations had to “move forward at pace”, with the crucial summit at which an agreement must be reached just two weeks away. → Read More

Boris Johnson attacks parliament for failing 'to do anything constructive' as MPs debate domestic violence crackdown

Boris Johnson has launched a fierce attack on parliament, accusing it of “refusing to do anything constructive” on the day it debates measures to curb domestic violence. In his Conservative conference speech, the prime minister lashed out at MPs who blocked a no-deal Brexit and a general election – claiming voters have more say over the TV programme I’m A Celebrity. → Read More

Chancellor reveals he is considering scrapping inheritance tax in huge handout to wealthiest Britons

Sajid Javid has revealed he is considering scrapping inheritance tax in what would be a huge handout to some of the wealthiest people in Britain. “It’s something that’s on my mind,” the chancellor told a fringe meeting at the Conservative Party conference, agreeing with a questioner who branded it the “most hated tax”. Mr Javid said: “I shouldn’t say too much now, but I → Read More

Boris Johnson says he cannot recall lunch with journalist who alleges he groped her – despite denying incident took place

Boris Johnson has admitted he cannot remember the lunch at which he is alleged to have groped a female journalist – despite repeatedly denying the incident took place. → Read More

Fury as Boris Johnson accuses rebel alliance MPs of 'collaboration' with foreign governments over Brexit

Boris Johnson has made the extraordinary claim that MPs behind the legislation to block a no-deal Brexit may have received “legal advice” from foreign governments. The prime minister defended a weekend briefing from a No 10 source attacking “foreign collusion”, saying: “There is a legitimate question to be asked.” When it was put to Mr Johnson that he was accusing British MPs → Read More