Uk’S Withdrawal from the European Union

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:47 pm on 13th March 2019.

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Photo of Stephen Gethins Stephen Gethins Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) 4:47 pm, 13th March 2019

This is the thing: just like that promise, every other promise fails to stand up to scrutiny, which is exactly why the DEFRA Secretary would not take any interventions from SNP Members. We have a clear position and know what we want, and the DEFA Secretary should be ashamed of the role played by Vote Leave and the promises that have not been kept.

The DEFRA Secretary also said that the House has been good at saying no. I want to remind him and other Members about something to do with taking responsibility. After the vote, the Scottish Government took the responsible step and put together a group of experts—the SNP still thinks that it is worth listening to experts from time to time—including diplomats, academics, colleagues from other political parties with something to say and a former European Court of Justice judge, to consider the ways forward, and they came up with a compromise deal two and a half years ago. Did the Government respond to that deal? Nothing of the sort. It was the most thought-out plan for this mess and certainly a lot more than we have had so far. No wonder, then, that we are talking about no deal. The House should reflect on that and think about the economic disaster and the social impact on the future opportunities of our young people. Almost 1,000 days on, we are still discussing a no-deal scenario that should have been taken off the table the day after the referendum.