The leader of the UK and Ireland’s union, Unite, accused Tory MPs of using Brexit as a ‘virility test’ and plunging the country into ‘grave no-deal uncertainty’ after attempts led by Labour to block a no-deal Brexit were narrowly defeated in parliament today (Wednesday 12 June).

Responding, Unite general secretary Len McCluskey, said: “Those Tory MPs hell bent on using Brexit as a virility test, need to think beyond Boris Johnson's irresponsible pitch for leader and fast. By preventing moves to make it tougher to shove our economy off the cliff, they are plunging this country into grave no-deal uncertainty.

“UK manufacturing is in crisis. Thousands have lost their jobs in the past few weeks alone because of Tory Brexit chaos and uncertainty. We urgently needed politicians to show today that they know what a disaster no deal is for anyone other than the super-rich. Too many of them failed to do so and that is a disgrace.

“Labour's correct efforts to rule out a no deal scenario in order to give some stability to the economy should have been supported by every decent minded MP today. As it is we have just got more chaos and confusion with the Conservatives. These are very worrying times indeed for working people.”