I was thoroughly outraged that Theresa May’s Brexit Bill denying Parliament any real say in the Brexit process sailed through the House of Commons on Wednesday (8th February).
The Prime Minister rejected calls for MPs to have a meaningful role in shaping the proposed divorce deal. The Government, instead, confirmed that the parliamentarians elected to represent the British and Northern Irish people will only be offered a ‘take it or leave it’ vote on the final deal.
It’s outrageous that MPs appear grateful to be offered a vote on the final deal, rather than demanding this as a Parliamentary right. How bizarre that, as an MEP, I am guaranteed a right to vote on this but MPs have to plead for the privilege. And if elected representatives in UK Parliament have to plead, what say will the public get? The sidelining of Parliament and the British people is unacceptable.
The UK Parliament has chosen to set out little clear guidance for the Government on content or process – every amendment to the short Bill fell. On what basis will MPs judge the final deal?
I was also utterly dismayed at how the opportunity to guarantee the rights of EU citizens resident in the UK was passed up. Securing the rights of those citizens from other EU countries, who came and made Britain their home and who have contributed so much to my constituency of London and to the UK as a whole should not be in doubt.
Greens will continue to argue against the ‘hard Brexit’ Theresa May seems intent on pursuing. As long as worker’s rights, environmental protections and the rights of EU citizens are not assured and as long as the threat of Britain becoming an even bigger tax haven post-Brexit looms, Greens will confront the route this government is taking every step of the way.
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