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Duties in connection with the withdrawal of the UK from the European Union

Part of European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 6) Bill – in the House of Commons at 6:45 pm on 4th September 2019.

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Photo of Paul Blomfield Paul Blomfield Shadow Minister (Exiting the European Union) 6:45 pm, 4th September 2019

I am happy to do that. We stood at the last election on a commitment to respect the result of the referendum but to rip up the negotiating mandate that the Tory Government had, which we felt failed the British people. I said from this Dispatch Box on 4 December 2018, when winding up the debate that the Prime Minister opened on the withdrawal deal, that if only she had seized the opportunity to be straight with the British people that they had voted to leave but by a painfully close margin and that the mandate was that we would no longer be members of the European Union but that we could retain a close relationship—in a customs union, aligned with the single market and part of the agencies and partnerships that we had built together—then we could have secured a deal. We entered into the cross-party talks in that spirit.