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Britain's Place in the World

Part of Speaker’s Statement – in the House of Commons at 3:13 pm on 15th October 2019.

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Photo of Keir Starmer Keir Starmer Shadow Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union 3:13 pm, 15th October 2019

My principal position is this: we did the right thing several weeks ago in passing a simple piece of legislation that says, “If by 19 October there is neither a deal nor agreement to no deal, we should take the safeguard of applying for an extension.” That is the law; it is not a debating point in this Chamber any more—it was, we debated it and we passed it. That is the law and it is what needs to happen on Saturday. In my experience, everybody says they want a deal—I do not doubt the sincerity of that, although I accept that people want different deals—until they see the detail. That is what happened to the previous Prime Minister. She was supported on the proposition of a deal, until she brought the deal back and people looked at it—then they did not like it. So there is a danger at the moment in overreaching where we have got to. We need to wait to see what comes back in the text, but what happened last time was that the principle of a deal was agreed but the detail was not agreed when it got back here. That is why the Act we passed several weeks ago is so important.