Speaker’S Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:33 pm on 18th March 2019.

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Photo of Anna Soubry Anna Soubry Independent, Broxtowe 3:33 pm, 18th March 2019

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. This is what happens when you do not seek consensus and compromise from the beginning, but lay down red lines and doggedly stick to them with an act of stubbornness and brinkmanship that has brought us to this point. The crisis that is now upon the country has to be unprecedented. We are due to leave the European Union in 11 days and there is no plan and there is no certainty, and this country, especially business, is crying out for them.

Mr Speaker, what would you now expect the Government to do? We are relying on tweets, rumours and spin from No.10 and, as I have said, the clock is ticking. I say with no disrespect to those sitting on the Treasury Bench that there is no senior Member here from Government who can help us with a timetable—[Interruption.] I said a senior Member who can help us with a timetable. [Interruption.] Now, we have that senior Member—the Leader of the House—with a timetable. I meant no disrespect to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. Mr Speaker, what do you now expect in terms of this timetable so that, in this crisis, we can make progress and do the right thing by the country?