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Brexit - Motion to Take Note

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 9:16 pm on 2nd October 2019.

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Photo of Lord Callanan Lord Callanan Minister of State (Department for Exiting the European Union) 9:16 pm, 2nd October 2019

If there are significant matters—of course we are still currently a member of the EU—then we are attending meetings, but not all EU meetings are to do with legislation. A lot of them are to discuss things that might happen, some of which could possibly impact on Northern Ireland, so we review which meetings we are attending on a weekly basis. I would of course be happy to meet the noble Earl, Lord Kinnoull, to discuss this further.

In concluding this debate, I remind your Lordships that it has been three years since the British people voted in the referendum to instruct the Government to leave the European Union. A number of noble Lords—the noble Lords, Lord Birt, Lord McNally, Lord Taverne, Lord Heseltine and Lord Livermore—spoke of having a second people’s vote. The noble Lord, Lord Shutt of Greetland, even questioned the continued validity of the 2016 referendum. I remind noble Lords again of the Government’s position that more British people voted in the 2016 referendum than for any other course of action in British electoral history. The message from voters in that referendum and the subsequent general election was clear; we cannot continue to second-guess such a clear instruction and we will never support another referendum.