Boris Johnson insists that he will "get Brexit done" by the end of January
Stop us if you've heard this one before.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has firmly reiterated his intention to ensure that Britain leaves the European Union by 31 January, 2020.
Johnson's comments arrived during a leadership debate televised on ITV on Tuesday night.
"We certainly will come out on January the 31st because we have a deal that is oven-ready," Johnson said.
"It's ready to go and it's approved, as I say, not just by our friends and partners in the EU, but by everyone of the 635 Conservative candidates. It delivers everything we wanted from Brexit.
"Our whole country comes out entire and perfect - England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland together - and there is a sharp distinction between what we are proposing; getting Brexit done, unleashing the potential of this country - and next year; dither and delay with another referendum on the EU when Jeremy Corbyn cannot tell us which side he would campaign on."
Opposition rival Jeremy Corbyn, who is pushing for a second referendum, dismissed Johnson's exit pledge, noting:
"The idea that the Prime Minister's deal can be dealt with and finished by the end of January is such nonsense."
The pair went head-to-head before a studio audience, taking questions from individuals over the course of around 50 minutes.
In truth, the results weren't terribly revelatory as both men underlined existing positions in a relatively civil manner.
Oddly, the debate concluded with a question asking what each man would get the other for Christmas. Corbyn opted for a copy of A Christmas Carol, while Johnson suggested "a copy of my brilliant Brexit deal" before choosing damson jam as a non-political substitute.
As for a rough reaction as to how the British public viewed the night, a snap poll carried out by YouGov put Johnson marginally ahead:
"Leaving aside your own party preference, who do you think performed best overall in tonight’s debate?"
Boris Johnson - 51%
Jeremy Corbyn - 49%
(Figures rebased to exclude don't knows)
Further results to follow shortly at: https://t.co/begsQeyYOn pic.twitter.com/WHZivErxlE
— YouGov (@YouGov) November 19, 2019