The House of Commons sat on a Saturday for the first time since 1982 to consider the new Brexit deal that Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his team have negotiated in Brussels. I thought it would be helpful to set out why I support the Prime Minister’s deal.
As some of you may know, I voted to Remain in 2016, but I am a democrat. I disagree with those disrespectful demands for a second referendum by people who didn’t like the result of the 2016 vote.
In the EU Referendum Act 2015, Parliament asked the people to make this decision and the Government promised to carry out whatever the people chose.
The deal Boris Johnson has negotiated is an improvement on Theresa May’s as it provides the UK with the basis of a new relationship with the EU based on free trade and cooperation, allowing us to leave the EU’s Customs Union so we can pursue our own independent trade policy and build our economy in the way that suits us instead of Brussels.
Northern Ireland will remain in the UK’s customs territory, having the benefits of free trade deals while having no hard border with the Republic of Ireland.
What’s more, this new deal abolishes the ‘backstop’. Now, the people of Northern Ireland will be in charge of their laws, and the Northern Ireland Assembly will have the right to vote to end this special arrangement.
Unfortunately on Saturday, MPs adopted an amendment which meant the vote on the deal itself could not take place on Saturday.
While Parliament has asked the EU for an extension, the Prime Minister has told the EU that a further extension would damage the interests of both the UK and the EU.
When I have been knocking on doors across the Forest of Dean recently, the message I have been hearing loud and clear is for us MPs in Parliament to ‘get Brexit done’, and that is why I will continue to support Boris Johnson’s deal in Parliament this week.