LABOUR have killed off proposal for a “government of national unity” as a means of preventing a No-Deal Brexit.

The plot to take control of Whitehall had come from Remain-backing MPs desperate to stop Boris Johnson clinging on to power if he loses a vote of no-confidence.

But yesterday, John McDonnell made clear that if the Commons voted down the Government, it’d be Labour looking to take over.

Over the weekend, the Prime Minister’s most senior adviser, Dominic Cummings, claimed MPs would not be able to stop a No-Deal Brexit.

Johnson’s de-facto chief of staff reportedly told government advisers that the Tory leader could stay on as Prime Minister even if he lost a vote of no-confidence.

Under the Fixed-terms Parliaments Act, once a government is voted down by the Commons, there are 14 days for MPs to try and form a new administration. If there’s no agreement then a General Election is held.

Cummings said if Johnson lost the vote, then he’d still be able to call the election for after the October 31 deadline with Europe – effectively too late to call off a no-deal Brexit.

Former Tory attorney general Dominic Grieve said said this claim displayed Cumming’s “characteristic arrogance and ignorance”.

The Remain-supporting MP said if Johnson lost the vote, then a government of national unity could step in and stop a No-Deal Brexit in its tracks.

Speaking to the Times, Grieve said the monarch would have a responsibility to act in those circumstances.

The National: Dominic Grieve

“The Queen is not a decorative extra. It’s true she has sought to keep herself well away from the cut and thrust of politics, but at the end of the day there are residual powers and responsibilities which lie with her. She might have to dispense with his services herself.”

Speaking at the Edinburgh Fringe yesterday, McDonnell agreed. He said if Johnson failed to quit he would not “want to drag the Queen into this but [he] would be sending Jeremy Corbyn in a cab to Buckingham Palace to say ‘we’re taking over’”.

Insetad of a government of national unity, McDonnell said Labour would try to form a caretaker government with the support of other opposition parties and rebel Tory MPs.

“That no means no coalitions or pacts, we just put it there and I think people of goodwill who are concerned about the interests of this country, about avoiding a No-Deal Brexit, will vote for it,” he said.

LibDem leader Jo Swinson said Corbyn’s Labour didn’t want to form a government of national unity as they “want to deliver Brexit”.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she wanted the SNP “to be part of efforts to get things on to a better track than they are on now”.

She added: “The stumbling block to that is Labour. Labour are still on the fence on Brexit and Jeremy Corbyn is abdicating his position of leadership by not giving that clear direction.

“So we need to get Labour off the fence and then we can look to stopping Boris Johnson in his tracks, hopefully.”

Speaking as he left his home yesterday morning, Cummings told Sky: “The most simple thing is the Prime Minister believes that politicians don’t get to choose which votes they respect, that’s the critical issue.

“I don’t think I am arrogant. I don’t know very much about very much. Mr Grieve … we’ll see what he’s right about.”

Speculation has intensified that Johnson is preparing for a snap poll after it emerged he had brought in Isaac Levido, the right-hand man of the Australian election guru Lynton Crosby, to a new campaigning role at Tory party headquarters.

Meanwhile, following a meeting in the White House on Tuesday Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab claimed that US president Donald Trump had expressed a “huge appetite” for signing a free trade deal with the UK after Brexit.