MP re­jects in­vite to take part in Brexit de­bate

Western Daily Press - - Cheltenham Literature Festival -

CHEL­TENHAM’S Con­ser­va­tive MP Alex Chalk has turned down a Brexit de­bate in­vi­ta­tion and urged his Labour ri­val to watch his ap­pear­ance at the Chel­tenham Lit­er­a­ture Fes­ti­val to­day.

Staunch pro-EU MP An­drew Ado­nis is due to speak at a Chel­tenham for Europe po­lit­i­cal event at 2pm on Satur­day in the town’s Queens Ho­tel.

He took to Twit­ter to sug­gest that while in Chel­tenham he could en­gage in a de­bate with Mr Chalk about Brexit.

He added: “His con­stituents are very con­cerned to know whether he will sup­port a peo­ple’s vote and if not, why not?”

Lord Ado­nis, a for­mer Trans­port Sec­re­tary, went fur­ther – by en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to email and tweet Mr Chalk if they wanted the pair to de­bate Brexit and the so-called ‘peo­ple’s vote’.

Now Mr Chalk has made it clear, through his party’s spokesman, that he will not be tak­ing up the in­vi­ta­tion.

The spokesman said: “It’s not clear if this last-minute tweet is a gen­uine in­vi­ta­tion or an at­tempt to drum up in­ter­est in this event.

“Ei­ther way, Alex has com­mit- ments to his con­stituents at that time.

“He reg­u­larly dis­cusses Brexit in Chel­tenham and will be do­ing so along­side Danny Finkel­stein and oth­ers on the stage at the Chel­tenham Lit­er­a­ture Fes­ti­val. BBC Pol­i­tics will be cov­er­ing the event and we would urge Lord Ado­nis to tune in.

Mean­while, Mr Chalk has made it clear that he is against a peo­ple’s vote on Brexit. He said talk of a vote weak­ened the hand of UK ne­go­tia­tors and the re­sult of a sec­ond vote would not be ac­cepted by the los­ing side.

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