Belfast Telegraph

Key quotes at-a-glance on Brexit ‘Super Saturday’

Key comments from inside and outside the House of Commons on the day of the Brexit debate.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson delivers a statement in the House of Commons (House of Commons/PA)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson delivers a statement in the House of Commons (House of Commons/PA)

By PA Reporter

The House of Commons met in a Saturday session for the first time in 37 years to vote on the Brexit deal agreed by the UK and the EU. But the vote did not take place after an amendment from Oliver Letwin to delay deal approval was agreed by 322 to 306.

A selection of quotes before the amendment was passed.

– Prime Minister Boris Johnson

“Now is the time, Mr Speaker, to get this thing done, and I say to all members let us come together as democrats to end this debilitating feud, let us come together as democrats to get behind this deal, the one proposition that fulfils the verdict of the majority, but which also allows us to bring together the two halves of our nation.”

– Leader of the Opposition Jeremy Corbyn 

“I also totally understand the frustration and the fatigue across the country and in this House, but we simply cannot vote for a deal that is even worse than the one the House rejected three times.”

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Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn responds to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s statement on his new Brexit deal (House of Commons/PA)

– SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford

“The Prime Minister has returned from Brussels to present a deal that he knows, that we all know is actually worse than Theresa May’s deal, a deal that would see Scotland shafted by this United Kingdom Government, left at an economic disadvantage, with Scotland’s views totally disregarded by this Prime Minister and his Government. Not a single MP who cares about Scotland’s future should consider supporting the Prime Minister today.”

– LibDem leader Jo Swinson

“Today hundreds of thousands of people will be outside demanding a final say in a People’s Vote.

“Isn’t the truth that the reason the Prime Minister refuses their calls is because he knows that if given the option the people will reject this bad deal and choose to remain in the EU?”

– DUP Westminster leader Nigel Dodds

“Weariness in this House over Brexit should not be an excuse for weakness on Brexit or weakness on the union.”

– Plaid Cymru Westminster leader Liz Saville Roberts

“How could Plaid Cymru ever support his billionaires’ Brexit?”

– Tweet from Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

“Johnson has broken virtually every past promise he has made on Brexit. How anyone could believe promises he makes now on workers’ rights or anything else is beyond me. ‘Caveat emptor’ should be the words ringing in ears of any Labour MP thinking of backing this deal.”

– Labour’s leader in the Lords Baroness Smith

“If this is the best Brexit that a Brexit-believing Prime Minister considers can be delivered, then why not seek that public mandate for it. Anything less would be a dereliction of duty.”

– Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer

“There’s been a lot of attention on how the deal operates in Northern Ireland, and rightly so, but that shouldn’t be allowed to mask the political project that is driving this deal. So it’s clear what this deal does, it rips up our close trading relationship with the EU and the price will be paid in damage to our economy and in job losses.”

– Independent former Tory Dominic Grieve

“I wish the Government would just listen a little bit, because I think it would find there’s much more common ground on this than it has ever been prepared to acknowledge. Instead of which it continues to give the impression that it just wants to drive a coach and horses through the rights of this House to do proper scrutiny.”

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Former prime minister Theresa May speaks in the House of Commons (House of Commons/PA)

– Former Prime Minister Theresa May

“If you don’t want no-deal, you have to vote for a deal. Businesses are crying out for certainty, people want certainty in their lives, our investors to be able to able to invest and want the uncertainty got rid of. They want to know that this country is moving forward. If you want to deliver Brexit, if you want to keep faith with British people, if you want this country to move forward then vote for the deal today.”

Quotes after the amendment ended the prospect of a vote on the Brexit deal.

– Boris Johnson

“I will not negotiate a delay with the EU and neither does the law compel me to do so.

“Further delay would be bad for this country, bad for our EU and bad for democracy.”

– Jeremy Corbyn

“I welcome today’s vote. It’s an emphatic decision by this house that has declined to back the Prime Minister’s deal today, and clearly voted to stop a no-deal crash out from the European Union. The Prime Minister must now comply with the law. He can no longer use the threat of a no-deal crash out to blackmail members to support his sell out deal.”

– Tweet from  Ian Blackford

Boris Johnson must now apply for an extension – immediately – as he is instructed by the law. If this Prime Minister fails to do that, and still thinks he is above the law. Then I say, @BorisJohnson, you’ll find yourself in court.

– Sir Oliver Letwin

“Now, when the Prime Minister brings the Withdrawal Implementation Bill to the House of Commons, we will be voting for it, we will continue to vote for it. We will seek to ensure that it becomes the law before October 31. And if it does so become the law, this country will leave on October 31.

“A hope that I share with the Prime Minister, but it will do so on the basis of knowing should anything go wrong, we will not crash out without a deal on that date.”

Tweet from Mayor of London Sadiq Khan

“I welcome the result of today’s vote. MPs should now kill off Boris Johnson’s bad Brexit deal – and he must abide by the law and ask for an extension.”

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