Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

UK’s Withdrawal from the EU

Part of Business of the House (Today) – in the House of Commons at 2:46 pm on 14th February 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Chris Leslie Chris Leslie Labour/Co-operative, Nottingham East 2:46 pm, 14th February 2019

I applaud Sir Oliver Letwin for seeking leadership and decisiveness at this moment. It makes me ask: who should be held responsible for the groundhog day moment we find ourselves in? It is no secret that I regard Brexit as an unmitigated disaster, particularly for the most vulnerable and least well-off of my constituents, whose jobs and livelihoods are threatened. I also hold the Prime Minister responsible for the conduct of the negotiations, accepting as she did this ridiculous arrangement whereby the divorce arrangements are separated from the future relationship. That should never have been allowed to happen. She then negotiated a deal that nobody really wanted, but which she is absolutely determined to prosecute at almost any cost. We are now in this ridiculous situation of the Prime Minister saying, “Back me or we all hold hands and jump off the cliff together.”

Brexit is not just a disaster; it is also a tragedy because of the economic consequences. We have been talking about the trade deals that we were promised would all be ready one second after midnight on 29 March. We discovered this week that only four or five of the 40 free trade agreements will be ready.