PEOPLE are watching proceedings in Parliament with bewilderment and anger.
17.4 million people voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum in the biggest act of democracy in our country’s history. And yet, almost three years later, MPs are flailing around making a complete hash of this simple instruction.
Reuters A letter from PM Theresa May to European Council President Donald Tusk asking for an Article 50 extension
Whether they voted to leave or to remain, Conservative or Labour, people feel that their votes are being ignored, their voices unheard and that the political antics are paralysing their lives and UK industry. We must not let this national humiliation for our country, the Conservative Party and the government continue.
And I’m afraid this comes down to leadership. The Prime Minister has always seen the result of the 2016 referendum as a problem to be resolved, not as a magnificent opportunity to be embraced.
That’s why the Withdrawal Agreement is such a bad deal, because we’ve been bending over backwards to accommodate everything that Brussels wants rather than robustly representing British interests. This has got to stop.
In the Commons this week, MPs rightly voted against us staying in the EU Customs Union. Doing so would scupper any chance of us having our own independent trade policy and, frankly, it is insulting to people’s intelligence to suggest that staying inside the EU Customs Union is compatible with us leaving the EU.
Yet instead of listening to this majority in Parliament, the government has instead chosen to invite a Marxist into No10 to shape their Brexit policy for them. I don’t remember telling voters in our 2017 Conservative Manifesto that we would leave the Customs Union and Single Market unless Jeremy Corbyn insisted otherwise.
A MARXIST IN NO10
The public wants MPs to compromise and agree a way forward. But they already have done, twice.
First, an overwhelming majority voted to trigger Article 50 so that we could leave the EU on 29th March 2019 with or without a deal. Second, the “Brady amendment”, passed in January, asked the Prime Minister to return to the EU to replace the “backstop” with “alternative arrangements” so that her deal could get through the House of Commons.
MPs have been persistently sidelined by No10’s bunker mentality, which is why we’re in such a mess. It baffles me as to why we are allowing this embarrassing pantomime to continue.
It’s time for our country to hold firm and for our Government to deliver what the House of Commons voted for. The EU must be left in no doubt that we either achieve meaningful, legally-binding changes to the Withdrawal Agreement, removing the backstop, or we walk away with no agreement. The ball is in the EU’s court.
Negotiations with the EU always conclude in the final hours and things were always going to get tough. “Nothing is agreed until everything’s agreed” used to be our philosophy. So we must not cave in, buckle under the strain or give up on the vital task of delivering the referendum result. And we must certainly not take the easy route out and sub-contract our governance to Jeremy Corbyn.
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The only way to regain our independence whilst enjoying a positive relationship with the EU, to restore trust in our democracy, to bring an end to the paralysing uncertainty and to become an example to the world of what a beacon of free global trade can achieve, is to stand tall and deliver what the people and Parliament voted for.
The endless and meaningless delays to Article 50 are becoming a shameful ritual. Let’s keep faith with the voting public, our activists and our members. We need to re-focus on our values and start showing some vision and optimism for the successful nation we can become once we’ve left.
If we don’t the whole country will pay the price when Jeremy Corbyn sweeps into No10, this time for good.
2019 Getty Images The endless delays to Brexit are paralysing the country and it’s all down to leadership, writes Priti Patel
AP:Associated Press The PM has invited Marxist Jeremy Corbyn into No10 and if the Tories don’t deliver Brexit he could sweep into Downing Street for good
MPs vote by a majority of one to back Yvette Cooper bill and force Theresa May to ask for EU extension to avoid No Deal Brexit