I want to thank all my constituents who have contacted me recently about Brexit. Despite public division and parliamentary deadlock, I remain committed to representing views on both sides of this debate and working towards an outcome which puts my constituents first.
In view of this commitment, I want to outline my reasons for voting for the amendments in tonight’s debate which seek to take a No Deal Brexit off the table.
Neither this amendment nor the bill block Brexit or revoke Article 50. They simply give Parliament the right to vote on whether to extend Article 50 if time has run out.
I do not wish to overturn Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. But I do want to ensure that existing jobs, rights and living standards are protected as we leave the European Union.
This means getting Brexit right, but with the No Deal deadline fast approaching, it is clear that the Conservative Government has comprehensively failed to do this. This Government’s plan does not satisfy leave or remain voters.
No Deal would mean WTO tariffs on food, border delays and customs costs for manufacturing industry, serious risks to medical supplies in the NHS and the undermining of border security and police co-operation.
Supermarkets have written to the Government warning that No Deal will mean higher prices and empty shelves as warehouses are full and supply chains will be disrupted.
You can read their letter here: https://brc.org.uk/media/378130/no-deal-brexit-letter.pdf
The poorest families will be hit the hardest by No Deal. I can not, in good conscience, allow this to happen to my constituents, who put their faith in me at the last General Election to put their interests first.
I understand that many of my constituents who voted to leave the European Union fear that their voice is not being heard in parliament. I have listened to their concerns, and I want to assure them that these decisions are not made lightly; they are never made without fully considering the views of all of my constituents.
However, I have been clear throughout this process that no deal is an unacceptable outcome for the people of Warrington.
For these reasons, I will be voting to prevent a No Deal Brexit tonight and to protect jobs, rights and living standards.