Parliament must be recalled to introduce People's Vote legislation
Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesperson Tom Brake has written to the Prime Minister to seek a recall of parliament to draft legislation enabling a People's Vote to be held.
Dear Prime Minister
I am writing to you regarding the Government’s proposals to secure a deal with the European Union, specifically following the poor reaction to UK discussions with fellow Heads of State at the EU Salzburg Summit earlier this week.
As both you, fellow EU Heads of State, the President of the European Council and the European Chief Negotiator have stressed, negotiations to secure a deal are reaching their must critical juncture, but without any deal identified.
The Liberal Democrats and I believe that preventing a No Deal scenario is becoming ever more urgent as No Deal, which requires medicines to be stockpiled and the Police to prepare for civil unrest, would be a catastrophe for the UK.
In light of this urgency, I call on you to request immediately that the Speaker of the House of Commons recalls Parliament.
The purpose of recalling Parliament would be to enable the Liberal Democrats, other parties and Parliamentarians from across the House to work with you to ensure that legislation for a final say on the deal or People's Vote is drawn up immediately. A People's Vote could then be held before the European Elections in May.
With the EU and your own MPs lined up against Chequers, Chequers has no future. No Deal, which you persist, wrongly, in claiming is the only alternative that could be offered to Parliament will not command a majority in the Commons. In these circumstances, a final say on the deal, so that people can choose between any deal the Government do eventually secure or staying in the EU is the only safe exit from the chaos the Conservative and other Brexit supporters have inflicted on the UK. Such a final say on the deal will of course require an extension to Article 50 so the legislation can be drafted, the question considered and the election conducted, but our EU partners have indicated an extension would be granted for this purpose.
I hope that you will welcome such an initiative and immediately make representations to your Cabinet and to the Speaker in order to start the preparations for such Parliamentary negotiations. The Liberal Democrats are willing to help draw up People's Vote legislation and would work constructively with the Government to secure its prompt passage through Parliament.
I look forward to your response.
Rt Hon Tom Brake MP