Tory grandee Lord Heseltine has suggested Brexit could be more damaging to the country than a Corbyn government.
In comments Tory Europhiles could see as a further disloyalty to Theresa May, the prominent Remainer said leaving the EU could have a worse long-term effect than Labour taking power.
Lord Heseltine warned he would try his best to stop Brexit by ‘any means’ at hand – whether it be a second referendum or a vote in the Lords.
And the former deputy PM said many pro-Remain Tories were considering leaving the party as Mrs May’s insistence on driving through Brexit made them question their loyalty to the ‘tribe’.
Tory grandee Lord Heseltine has suggested Brexit could be more damaging to the country than a Corbyn government
Tory MP Nigel Evans said: ‘Only a euro-fanatic of the pedigree of Michael Heseltine could believe that a Venezuela-loving Corbyn government would be preferable to leaving his beloved EU.
‘A run on the pound and a return to the damaging state-controlled industries of the 60s would inflict immense damage on the UK.
‘It’s about time Tarzan hung up his loincloth and got behind Theresa May, who is delivering what the UK voted for and is doing it rather well without irrelevant interventions of the Jurassic Park era.’
His fellow Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg added: ‘It shows how deep-seated his love for the EU is that he would rather bankrupt the nation than leave it.
Jeremy’s Christmas: A really good apple juice followed by a four mile jog
His policies may centre on lavish spending, but when it comes to Christmas Jeremy Corbyn prefers a more austere approach.
As a vegetarian, the 68-year-old avoided a traditional Christmas roast while, as his wife Laura Alvarez is Mexican, the family celebrated on Christmas Eve before a low-key December 25.
Mr Corbyn said that he starts Christmas Day off as he usually does – with a glass of apple juice.
But he told political website Politico: ‘On Christmas Day, I make sure it is a particularly good one.’
After that, he said he likes to go for a three- or four-mile run on Christmas morning.
He told the Daily Mirror that, as he goes through London parks, he often sees swimmers taking a Christmas morning dip.
He said: ‘They said do you fancy joining in, I said, ‘No no no.’
‘Most people become wise with age, Lord Heseltine is the exception that proves the rule.’
Lord Heseltine said Labour would have a negative effect on the UK – but Brexit would be worse.
Asked what would happen under five years of a Corbyn government, he said: ‘Well, we have survived Labour governments before.
‘Their damage tends to be short-term and capable of rectification. Brexit is not short-term and is not easily capable of rectification.
In comments Tory Europhiles could see as a further disloyalty to Theresa May, the prominent Remainer said leaving the EU could have a worse long-term effect than Labour taking power
‘There will be those who question whether the short-term pain justifies the avoidance of long-term disaster.’
Lord Heseltine also claimed Brexit would become ‘more unpopular as people realise what it’s all about’.
‘If you look at the polls there is probably a bigger majority against Brexit than the referendum secured but that, I think, will continue to happen,’ he told the Limehouse podcast.
‘I think a second referendum would be a vehicle for ending Brexit, but personally I would rather Parliament to do it – either if this present parliament became hostile or because in an election the issue was rethought and a subsequent parliament did it. My preoccupation is ending Brexit.’
Ken Clarke, the pro-EU former Tory chancellor, told another episode of the same podcast that he would ‘love to reverse the referendum if I thought we could’, but added: ‘I don’t think we can.’
Lord Heseltine has long been one of his party’s most vociferous Europhiles.
He walked out of Margaret Thatcher’s Cabinet in 1986 following a row over Europe. Later he became a prominent supporter of joining the euro.
Since the referendum he has repeatedly called for the result to be reversed.
Last week he told Channel 4 News: ‘My problem is so simple: I believe that Brexit is such a disaster for this country that my wish is to see Brexit fail.’
Labour is a ‘nightmare for business’
A Labour Government led by Jeremy Corbyn is a ‘nightmarish’ prospect for business that could wreck the economy, a senior manufacturing lobbyist has warned.
Terry Scuoler, retiring head of the Engineering Employers’ Federation, said firms should not trust the ‘charm offensive’ mounted by the party’s hard-Left leadership.
The 67-year-old, whose association represents 20,000 businesses in the manufacturing and engineering industries, said Labour pledges to seize control of railways, water firms, energy companies and Royal Mail would be just the start of a programme of ‘widespread nationalisation’.
He added: ‘There are a number of policy initiatives which are likely to be the thin end of a hardline socialist wedge.’
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell – who claims to have the backing of some senior City figures – has pledged to borrow £250billion over a decade for investing.
Ahead of June’s election, Labour pledged to hike corporation tax from 19 per cent to 26.
Josh Hardie, deputy director-general of the Confederation of British Industry, has said: ‘If to fund some of these things, business is seen as a bottomless pit, that will damage growth and investment.
‘If the idea is that it can all be paid for by excessive borrowing and punitive taxation, they need to understand what the impact will be on investment and growth.’