Matt Hancock: Shutting down Parliament to deliver Brexit would betray D-Day veterans

Posted On: 
10th June 2019

Matt Hancock has insisted that any attempt to shut down Parliament to ensure the UK leaves the EU on 31 October would betray the memory of D-Day veterans.

Matt Hancock at the launch of his Tory leadership campaign.
PA Images

In a thinly-veiled swipe at Tory leadership rivals Dominic Raab and Esther McVey, he said the suggestion "goes against everything those men who fought their way up those beaches died for".

Both Mr Raab and Ms McVey have refused to rule out "proroguing" Parliament - effectively sending MPs back to their constituencies so they are unable to block a no-deal departure.

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But launching his campaign to be the next Prime Minister, Mr Hancock said he would not countenance such a move if he makes it to Number 10.

After paying tribute to the sacrifices of British soldiers in the Second World War, he said: "My Brexit delivery plan is the only credible plan to actually deliver Brexit by 31 October in a way that the House of Commons and the European Union can both accept. This is just the reality of the situation.

"Some have said stick with the current deal, but that’s been shown to fail. Others say let’s just run at no deal, but the brutal truth is we know that won’t get through the House of Commons.

"And this idea from some people, this idea I’ve been hearing, that to deliver Brexit we should suspend our parliamentary democracy - that goes against everything those men who fought their way up those beaches died for."

Elsewhere, Mr Hancock also took a swipe at Boris Johnson's plan to cut taxes for those earning between £50,000 and £80,000.

He said: "I want to see reductions in tax that benefit everybody, all working peoplem rather than being specifically targeted."