Farage Slams Anti-Brexit Speaker for ‘Acting Way Above His Station’

The new Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow is pictured in his office at the House of Commons, in Westminster, central London, on June 23, 2009.
STEFAN ROUSSEAU/AFP/Getty

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage has slammed John Bercow for saying that he would stay on as speaker of the House of Commons in order to facilitate MPs blocking a no-deal Brexit.

Mr Farage made the comments on his LBC radio show after Mr Bercow had told the Brookings Institution in Washington D.C. that “the idea that there is an inevitability of a no-deal Brexit would be a quite wrong suggestion. There is no inevitability whatsoever about that.”

” I do feel that now is a time in which momentous events are taking place and there are great issues to be resolved and in those circumstances, it doesn’t seem to me sensible to vacate the chair,” Speaker Bercow later told The Guardian.

Mr Farage told his audience: “What Bercow is really saying is this… if the next prime minister decided to keep the legislation in place — because the law of the land today is that we are leaving on the 31st of October, deal or no deal — what he is really saying is if a Conservative prime minister tried to take us out with no deal, WTO terms, on the 31st of October he is going to make sure that the House of Commons get a chance to vote it down, even though it is already the law of the land.”

Becoming flustered with the audacity of the speaker, who is meant to remain politically neutral, the Brexit Party leader said facetiously: “I have got an idea Mr Bercow, let’s get rid of elections, let’s just all put you in charge of the whole thing.”

“I think this man is acting way above his station. He shows no hint of neutrality,” he added.

Amidst claims that the speaker, who has already been accused of bias for allowing MPs to vote to block a no-deal Brexit, could help stop the UK leaving the EU in a clean break have been brought into question by Remainer MP Nick Boles, who said that the speaker has “no power to do that”.

Also on Thursday morning, the Remain-backing Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond has said that he would “act in what I believe is the best interest” of the United Kingdom, including suggesting that he would back a vote of no confidence in the next prime minister should they attempt to bring the UK out of the EU without a deal.

A Whitehall think tank this week reported that the Remainer-dominated Parliament has no avenue to block a no-deal Brexit should a Leave-supporting Tory MP become prime minister.

The Institute for Government wrote that “if a new prime minister is set on no deal, then they have no need for further ‘meaningful votes’. That denies MPs an opportunity to vote to take control of the timetable again.

“And the no deal provision in the EU Withdrawal Act 2018 – which would have required the Government to hold a vote in the Commons if no agreement had been reached with the EU by 21 January – has long expired.”

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