Boris Johnson has been compared to a “drunk uncle at a wedding” after a rambling and incoherent speech for local Conservative members in Northern Ireland.
Video of the speech has gone viral after the Prime Minister claimed Northern Ireland was getting a “great deal” by staying in the European Union’s single market and keeping “free movement” (unlike the rest of the UK). He is seen to state:
When you come out of the EU customs union which is what we’ve done, you have to have some way of checking that goods that might attract a tariff going from the United Kingdom into Ireland pay that tariff, if there is to be a tariff.
Johnson continues, “The only place you can do it, if you don’t do it at the border, is at the border in Northern Ireland” before claiming:
The great thing that’s been misunderstood with this is there will not be checks, there will not be checks – I speak as the prime minister of the United Kingdom and a passionate Unionist – there will not be checks on goods going from Northern Ireland to Great Britain.
People had thoughts on this, as you might expect, not least because Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay has previously stated that Northern Ireland businesses will be forced to fill out export declaration forms when sending goods to Britain. Which would completely contradict Boris Johnson, who to believe? Who knows.
The video was initially shared by Sky News political correspondent Lewis Goodall:
Social media speculated that the PM was not only confused by his own Brexit deal, that he was also drunk.
Others thought his performance could best be summed up by those around him: