Why I am backing the PM’s Brexit deal
EVERYONE knows divorce is difficult, costs money and that neither party emerges an outright winner.
Separating from the club we have been a member of for 40 years was always likely to have some of the same problems.
The basis of the deal has been known for some time: like a four legged table, one leg is the assurance to EU citizens who have lived and worked here that they will continue to be able to do so and for the other one million UK citizens in the EU the same assurance; the second leg is the divorce bill of £ 39 billion for our outstanding liabilities; the third leg, and by far the most important, is frictionless trade for UK business with the EU, which is our main market; the fourth is resolving the Irish question.
Mrs May has secured an offer previously refused to David Cameron: we would take back control of our borders and end free movement as part of her deal.
This represents a huge shift and reflects what many people told me they wanted during the referendum campaign.
A reality check is required.
No deal would be a disaster for the West Midlands which exports more than any other region to the EU.
Car manufacturers have indicated that ‘ no deal’ could result in tariffs of £ 4.5bn.
Why would business produce goods here for its principal market if barriers and tariffs are to be put in its way by no deal?
No deal would put at risk the recovery of manufacturing which has given a whole generation of young people a great start in well paid, skilled jobs.
This deal gives us back control over our borders, our law making and our money so why reject it?
We will not have the same degree of influence over the club we are leaving but, just like a divorce there is always a price.
For the fresh start the country voted for at the referendum this is the best deal on offer and the EU has said it will not improve on it.
I am full of admiration for Mrs May who calmly and patiently explained the detail of the withdrawal agreement and the political declaration to our Parliament.
This is the time for cool heads and rational thinking, not hot- headed emotion or the prospect of a so called People’s Vote. In regards to the question of a second referendum; more than 17.4 million people voted to leave the EU in 2016.
At the 2017 General Election, both main political parties, which received more than 80 per cent of the vote, pledged to respect the EU referendum result.
When a decision of constitutional significance is made, it is important that democratic processes are followed. Parliament gave the British people the final say on the UK’s membership of the EU and the result should be respected.
The prospect of a second vote might be politically expedient, but ultimately it promotes uncertainty and division and would not be in the national interest.
It is the responsibility of Government to lead the country and, as the Prime Minister stated on November 15, “leadership is about taking the right decisions not the easy ones”. I respect the huge effort made by the PM and fully support the deal she has secured to deliver Brexit.
Prime Minister Theresa May