European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 5) Bill - Second Reading

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 8:52 pm on 4th April 2019.

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Photo of Lord Willoughby de Broke Lord Willoughby de Broke UKIP 8:52 pm, 4th April 2019

Of course we would have accepted the referendum result—we would have had to. We would not have said that the whole thing was illegitimate and that we wanted another referendum; we would have had to accept the result, just as we were forced to accept the result of the 1975 referendum which unfortunately brought us into the clutches of the European Union, or the Common Market, as it then was. We accepted that, so the answer is that we would have accepted this.

Today, we were presented with a wretched Bill that orders the Prime Minister to go to Brussels as a supplicant, on bended knee, to request an extension until an unknown date. That we do not have a date in the Bill is a matter of contention which will be dealt with in Committee. It is a complete negation of the vote at the end of June 2016.

The noble Baroness, Lady Hayter, and the noble Lord, Lord Rooker, who spoke earlier to introduce the Bill, and other noble Lords, have said there is no appetite for no deal. I must disabuse them of that idea, and tell them that there is an appetite for no deal. Only this morning, a YouGov poll came out—not of Parliament, because we know the flavour of Parliament and have had enough of that for a long time, but of the country at large. Among the Conservatives polled, 72% were in favour of no deal and only 15% against. From the Labour Party, 21% still voted no deal and 34% against. In London, 26% were for no deal and 45% against. In the rest of the south of England, 44% were for no deal and 34% against. In the Midlands, where I come from, 46% were for no deal and 31% against. In the north, 41% were for no deal and 34% against. That was today; it is not imagination.