Many constituents are contacting me to share their strong concerns regarding the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated by the Prime Minister, which fails to deliver on her Government’s promises.
The government is now in chaos because of their inability to negotiate a deal in the national interest. It is highly unlikely the Agreement will get through Parliament and it’s not clear what is going to happen next but the Government is weak and unstable at this crucial time in our history when we need strong governance.
Labour have been clear that we will not vote for a deal that does not protect jobs, workers and environmental rights, the economy and living standards or a deal that does not work for all of the nations in the United Kingdom.
My party has fought for a deal which included a new comprehensive and permanent customs union, with a British say in future trade deals which would support businesses, our NHS, jobs and the manufacturing supply chains they depend on; a strong single market relationship that allows British business continued access to vital European markets for both goods and services and a guarantee that our country doesn’t fall behind the EU in workers’ rights, or protections for consumers and the environment.
The Prime Minister’s hopeless compromise offers none of this and I cannot support it. It will harm jobs and the economy, it will not deliver frictionless trade and provides no certainty over customs, immigration, security, defence, research and collaboration. You were promised Brexit would be easy and have no downsides; that we would be taking back control. This deal has considerable downsides and leaves us stuck in limbo with a loss of sovereignty and less control over our borders and laws. It is a failure after two years of botched negotiations, and it would leave us in a state of limbo.
I do not believe the Prime Minister’s deal is in the national interest – indeed it is vastly inferior to the deal we currently have with the European Union. There have already been a number of resignations – including that of her own Brexit Secretary. There could not be more damning an indictment than Dominic Raab’s assessment of the deal that he negotiated, but now says ‘presents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom’. The Prime Minister now knows that her Withdrawal agreement cannot win the approval of Parliament as it has no support from Labour, the DUP or the SNP.
This is a critical point in our history and we need stability from the Government, not this chaos. I will be working hard in the coming weeks to act in the best interests of the people of Bedford and Kempston and, alongside colleagues, pressing this Government to put the interests of the country not the Conservative Party first.