Exiting the European Union (Consumer Protection)

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:23 pm on 2nd April 2019.

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Photo of David Linden David Linden SNP Whip 3:23 pm, 2nd April 2019

I am very grateful to the hon. Gentleman for giving way; he is one of my genuine friends in this place. He is right that in 2016, the Scottish Government said, “We campaigned for remain. We did not want to leave the European Union,” but we realised very early on that because of the democratic deficit that exists in this House, we had to compromise. That is why “Scotland’s Place in Europe” looked at membership of the single market and the customs union. We compromised in 2016 when it was very, very unpopular to do so. There has been a process of evolution: we have gone from that compromise to what I accept is a very hard-nosed reality, where the only thing that we can do to protect our economy is to revoke article 50. Does he not agree, however, that it might just have helped things in 2016 if that spirit of compromise had evolved a bit sooner in this place and that we might not have found ourselves, three or four days after the scheduled exit, debating a statutory instrument that could have profound consequences, depending on what happens over the next few days?