Nick Abbot 10pm - 1am
Tories say Corbyn is 'out-and-out lying' over US-UK trade claims
27 November 2019, 12:29
The Conservative Party has branded Jeremy Corbyn's claims to have an "unredacted dossier" which proves the NHS is "on the table" in US-UK trade talks a "smokescreen."
On Wednesday Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called a press conference where he announced Labour had obtained uncensored documents which confirm the US is asking for the NHS to be "on the table" and will be "up for sale," under a Conservative government.
The Tories have hit back at the Labour leader branding the claims a "smokescreen" designed to cover up the fact he has "no plan for Brexit" with International Trade Secretary Liz Truss saying Mr Corbyn was "out-and-out lying to the public."
A Conservative Party spokesperson said, "the documents from the supposed ‘unredacted dossier’ that Jeremy Corbyn premised his entire press conference on have already been online for two months."
The documents are readouts from meetings of the UK-US Trade & Investment Working Group.
The Conservatives said in the document Mr Corbyn brandished at journalists, which consist of over 450 pages, they only "mention the NHS four times."
In the only document that relates to this year, there is not a single mention of the NHS, drugs or of pharmaceuticals, the Conservatives said.
Setting out the party's position on the NHS and a proposed US-UK trade deal, the Tory spokesperson said the 2019 Conservative Party manifesto says: ‘The NHS is not on the table. The price the NHS pays for drugs is not on the table. The services the NHS provides are not on the table.’
But the Labour leader said the documents he had obtained show "the US and the UK have already finished initial discussion on lengthening patents for medicines," which he said could "mean only one thing. More expensive drugs."
"Lives will be put at risk as a result of this," the Labour leader said.
International Trade Secretary Liz Truss said: “Jeremy Corbyn is getting desperate and is out-and-out lying to the public about what these documents contain. He has always believed in conspiracy theories - which is why he has failed to crack down on the scourge of antisemitism in his party. This is the man that has caused huge offence by blaming an imaginary ‘Zionist lobby’ for society’s ills and now he has decided to smear UK officials too.
“People should not believe a word that he says - this stunt is simply a smokescreen for the fact that he has no plan for Brexit and that he has been forced to admit that he wants to increase taxes for millions of families.
“As we have consistently made clear: the NHS will not be on the table in any future trade deal and the price that the NHS pays for drugs will not be on the table. This sort of conspiracy theory fuelled nonsense is not befitting of the leader of a major political party.”