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

Article 50 Extension

Part of Destitution Domestic Violence Concession (Eligibility) – in the House of Commons at 3:44 pm on 20th March 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Steve Barclay Steve Barclay The Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union 3:44 pm, 20th March 2019

What I am advocating is a deal, because I accept that an outcome of either no Brexit or no deal is highly undesirable. Going back on the referendum result and on the hon. Lady’s own manifesto pledge at the last election would be hugely damaging to our democracy and to public trust in this institution.

In seeking a short extension to 30 June, the Government intend to bring the deal back to the House as the best means of ensuring an orderly exit. If, however, the House continues to refuse a deal, and if alternatives through other votes do not provide sufficient numbers for both a deal and ratification, it is clear that the House will need to decide between no deal, a softer Brexit and no Brexit at all. Some Members would prefer a general election to no deal, which is why those of my colleagues counting on a no-deal outcome are set to be frustrated, and others who think that Brexit can be stopped by holding European parliamentary elections and so enabling further long extensions might find that some Members prefer other outcomes. The best way for the House to deliver on the will of the people in the referendum is to support the Prime Minister’s deal. That is the way forward and is how the Government should proceed.