Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:55 pm on 3rd April 2019.

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Photo of Anne Main Anne Main Conservative, St Albans 1:55 pm, 3rd April 2019

I share the concerns of my right hon. Friend Mr Davis about the speed with which this has come about and the lack of scrutiny. In particular, I am concerned about something that was part of the speech of my right hon. Friend Sir Oliver Letwin just now—I will raise it in my amendment, if I am allowed to move it tonight. The Bill that he is trying to rush through the House simply asks the Prime Minister to seek an extension; it does not ask her to bring an extension back or to agree an extension, and it does not require her to refuse an extension. I am concerned that deals done behind closed doors in the EU might not come back before this House, which might be a result that my right hon. Friend does not anticipate. I believe that the flaw in the Bill that he is trying to put through is that it sends off a Prime Minister who has the absolute right of her office to decide to do things, but it does not mandate her to bring back to this House anything that she is offered. I cannot think that that is what he intends.