Eu: Withdrawal and Future Relationship (Motions)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:08 pm on 1st April 2019.

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Photo of Kenneth Clarke Kenneth Clarke Father of the House of Commons 5:08 pm, 1st April 2019

I shall be accused of bias if I give way to my right hon. and learned Friend.

I urge the Liberals to proceed on that basis, and similarly, the Scottish nationalists. I agree with them—I would much prefer to stay in the European Union—but I am afraid that in trying to give this country good and stable governance by giving steers to the House of Commons, I have compromised on that, because a huge majority seems to me to have condemned us to leaving the European Union. I have tabled motions with the Scottish nationalists and have voted with them to revoke article 50 if the dread problem of no deal seems to be looming towards us by accident, and I will again. I cannot understand why the Scottish nationalists will not at least contemplate, if they cannot get their way and stay in the European Union, voting for a permanent customs union, which will benefit business and the economy in Scotland just as much as here and is not remotely incompatible with pursuing their wider aims.