Labor’s Corbyn Accuses Johnson of Offering Up UK Health Service in US Talks
Opposition Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn offered on Wednesday what he described as evidence that access to Britain’s health service was being discussed in trade talks with the United States, handing reporters hundreds of pages of documents.
Johnson has repeatedly denied that Britain’s National Health Service is on the table in such talks, but Corbyn said he had copies of leaked documents from UK-US Trade and Investment working groups that proved otherwise.
The NHS, much loved in Britain, has become a key fighting ground before an election on Dec. 12, called to try to break the deadlock in parliament over the country’s departure from the European Union that has muddied traditional political loyalties.
Corbyn may also be keen to shift the narrative to the NHS and away from criticism on Tuesday over what Britain’s chief rabbi said was his failure to stem anti-Semitism in his party that had allowed “a new poison” to take root in Labor, Reuters reported.
Corbyn, who has argued that Johnson’s Conservatives will allow the United States to increase drug prices as part of a post-Brexit trade deal, said he had 451 pages of unredacted documents on talks between the two countries.
“Perhaps he (Johnson) would like to explain why these documents confirm the US is demanding the NHS is on the table in the trade talks,” he told a news conference.
“These uncensored documents leave Boris Johnson’s denials in absolute tatters.”