Anti-Brexit Members of Parliament have lavished praise on Prime Minister Theresa May as she defended her ‘Chequers Agreement’ which would see the UK remain effectively tied to the European Union after Brexit.
During an address of the House of Commons by the Prime Minister on Monday afternoon, Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable — who called the June 23rd, 2016, vote to leave the EU “white nostalgia” — congratulated Mrs May for the White Paper which could put a post-Brexit bilateral free trade deal with the United States at stake.
“I congratulate the Prime Minister for effectively ‘killing off’ the United States/UK trade agreement by agreeing to retain EU regulatory convergence which of course the Americans cannot accept,” said the MP for Twickenham.
“Could I echo the calls she’s just heard that now she has lost the support of the Brexit fundamentalists, now is the time to have a national consensus and a majority of the House who do support retaining membership of the Customs Union and Single Market,” he added, which would tie the UK to the uncontrolled mass migration of people from the bloc as well as hampering the UK from signing free trade deals with other nations.
Anyone in doubt of the nature of @theresa_may 's proposal should watch now her statement to the House.
— Ben Harris-Quinney (@B_HQ) July 9, 2018
May’s fellow Conservative and Remainer Anna Soubry — who helped launch a cross-party campaign to push for a second referendum — “commended” the Prime Minister “for this plan, and in particular, can I congratulate her for her leadership”, adding that Mrs May was moving in the right direction.
Tory grandee Ken Clarke also “warmly congratulat[ed] the Prime Minister on the progress she made at the weekend at Chequers”, and Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond tweeted that May’s soft Brexit plan has his “full support”.
— Philip Hammond (@PhilipHammondUK) July 9, 2018
Other Remainers saw the Chequers Agreement as a foot in the door to either a second referendum, retaining a close union with the EU, or stopping Brexit altogether, with Labour MP Ben Bradshaw MP calling for a vote on the final deal — a second referendum by any other name — and Tony Blair’s former spin doctor Alistair Campbell later calling for a public vote on the final Brexit deal.
However, campaigners for a clean Brexit told the Prime Minister that the ‘third way’ proposals were a betrayal of Brexit and of the 17.4 million Britons who voted Leave.
— Sky News (@SkyNews) July 9, 2018
Conservative MP Peter Bone said that Tory activists in his constituency of Wellingborough felt “betrayed” and for the first time in ten years refused to go out and campaign for the party.
And Conservative Andrea Jenkyns — who recently resigned as a ministerial aide in order to speak more freely about Brexit — told the House that “within 46 hours of the Prime Minister’s statement, I had received over 300 emails” from her Morley and Outwood constituents, “disheartened, dismayed, and telling me that democracy is dead”.
WATCH | "Within 48 hours of the prime minister's statement I received over 300 emails dishearted, dismayed, and telling me that democracy is dead" @andreajenkyns
— Leave.EU (@LeaveEUOfficial) July 9, 2018
Significantly, three Brexit-supporting ministers have so far resigned from Mrs May’s Cabinet with David Davis and Steve Baker resigning as Brexit secretary and under-secretary for Department for Exiting the European Union, respectively, on Sunday night and Boris Johnson stepping down as foreign secretary on Monday.
Politicians come and go but the problems they have created for people remain. I can only regret that the idea of #Brexit has not left with Davis and Johnson. But…who knows?
— Donald Tusk (@eucopresident) July 9, 2018
Chairman of the pro-Brexit, conservative think tank the Bow Group Ben Harris-Quinney told Breitbart London: “If you are puzzling over the small print in May’s proposal just look at how happy the Remainers are and how angry the Brexiteers are.
“Anna Soubry and Nicholas Soames praising May tells the story better than anyone else could.
“This is a soft Brexit deal to leave the constraints of the EU in name only. Boris Johnson, David Davis, and Steve Baker were right to resign and I caution any Brexiteer who supports it, they will be trading favour with a short-term Government over the long-term support of their base.”
— Bow Group (@bowgroup) July 9, 2018