Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:10 pm on 27th March 2019.

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Photo of Hilary Benn Hilary Benn Chair, Committee on Exiting the European Union 2:10 pm, 27th March 2019

Does my hon. Friend share my puzzlement at the remarks of the Leader of the House, who gave the impression that, somehow, this has been sprung on the Government when they are only too willing to make provision for indicative votes? I draw my hon. Friend’s attention to the Brexit Committee’s recommendation published on 16 January, after the Government’s deal was first defeated by 230 votes:

“It is vital that the House of Commons is now given the opportunity to identify an option that might secure a majority. We recommend that this is done by holding a series of indicative votes on the options we have set out above as soon as possible.”

Here we are on 27 March, which is going some when it comes to “as soon as possible.” Does my hon. Friend agree that the Government could perfectly easily have acted earlier?