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 Neil O'Brien Neil O'Brien Conservative, Harborough 3:33 pm, 18th March 2019

On a point of order, Mr Speaker. I do not envy you in trying to make these difficult decisions. First, can I press you on your understanding of what is substantively different? For example, were the Government to come back with a proposition that they would write into law the Stormont lock, would that be substantively different? If there were to be commentary that changed our opinion of this at the European Council, would that be substantially different? Many Members of this House feel that having taken no deal off the table, which I voted against, already makes the situation substantially different, so will you say a little more about that?

Secondly, Mr Speaker, you listed some precedents starting with 1604, which is very interesting to new Members. Some Members were already here; I was not, as a new Member. We are in an unprecedented situation in which we have voted for a referendum, giving sovereignty to those it belongs to—the people—and we are now bound by that decision. How will you deal with this unprecedented situation? My constituents who are worried about their jobs, or worried about losing the Brexit they voted for, will always prefer you, instead of rigidly sticking with precedents from 1604, to be a modern Speaker for modern times who cannot stand in the way of delivering the early deal that I believe will solve this problem.