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Motion A

Part of European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill - Commons Amendments – in the House of Lords at 6:00 pm on 22nd January 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Ludford Baroness Ludford Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Exiting the European Union) 6:00 pm, 22nd January 2020

My Lords, I am not quite sure why the noble Lord, Lord Callanan, singled me out for mention. I think that I must figure in his worst nightmares—which obviously delights me.

He referred to it taking three years to get the withdrawal agreement approved, but I remind him and the Benches opposite that the failure to approve it sooner was due largely to the refusal of Brexiters to support previous efforts. We remainers do not accept responsibility for Brexit or for the negative consequences that it will entail. We have played our part responsibly in trying to improve the process and the outcome of Brexit, as we have on this Bill.

I am glad that this House was not bullied or intimidated, and that it has improved the Bill. In better times, the thoughtful contributions that we made would have received a more respectful response from the Government—I agree, for once, with the noble Lord, Lord Howarth—but the Government were dogmatically determined to refuse any positive improvement to the Bill. So here we are, and we will see what happens in the months and years to come.