When MPs vote against a Bill at third reading in the House of Commons, they are attempting to press the nuclear button. A vote at third reading is the final vote. A vote against it is a vote to destroy the Bill. Oppositions, of course, regularly vote to destroy Bills that they dislike at third reading, however, when it comes to the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill which cleared its Commons stages yesterday, many of the Labour MPs who voted against were doing so in full opposition to the majority of their constituents wishes.
I am not saying that this Bill is perfect – I don’t think that any Bill that seeks to transfer powers back from the EU in such a short timescale ever could be. Many MPs are concerned that too much power will be transferred to the Government, however, those same MPs didn’t bat an eyelid when numerous powers were being transferred from the UK to Brussels. It is the worst type of hypocrisy.
But this Bill is essential. If the opposition had won the day, we would have been in a complete mess. Even poorer, rushed legislation would have had to be enacted, or (which I am sure those MPs voting against really want) Brexit would have been delayed or even reversed if the delays went on long enough.
In Hull, where over 67.5 per cent of those who voted in the EU Referendum, voted Leave, the city’s current three Labour MPs all voted to destroy the Bill. They may say that they voted with their consciences, but I think that it is more likely that they voted as their leader told them to.
Indeed, all Labour MPs apart from four (Frank Field, Kate Hoey, John Mann, and Graham Stringer) voted to destroy this Bill.
Just under 70 per cent in North East Lincolnshire voted leave, yet Melanie Onn, the Labour MP for Great Grimsby, voted against last night.
In the area covered by Durham County Council, 57.5 per cent voted Leave, yet all the county’s Labour MPs voted against. The list goes on.
Labour is in a complete mess over Brexit. The party to trying to be all things to all people in a desperate bid to keep the Hull and Hampstead wings together. It doesn’t have a coherent Brexit policy. Jenny Chapman, a Shadow Brexit Minister (56.2 per cent of her Darlington constituents voted Leave), told ITV’s Paul Brand that she gets a bit irritated when she is told that Labour’s Brexit position is not clear, and yet after watching the clip below, I bet you are as confused as the rest of us after Ms. Chapman tripped and stumbled trying to explain it.
“I get a bit irritated when you say it’s not clear”. Labour’s shadow Brexit Minister @JennyChapman heroically tries to explain the party’s position on the single market…before getting a bit stuck. That’s clear then? 🤔 Full interview tonight on Around the House 10.45pm. pic.twitter.com/fcEKqDjkcg
— Paul Brand (@PaulBrandITV) January 16, 2018
All the Labour MPs in Leave voting constituencies who were elected or re-elected at last year’s general election, took their seats knowing what a majority of their constituents had decided in the referendum the previous year. Yesterday, acting in the way they did, they effectively stuck two fingers up to their constituents and told them that they are better than they are and that their opinions don’t matter.
Labour prefers to put playing politics above their constituents democratically expressed views. There are so many reason why Jeremy Corbyn is not fit to become Prime Minister. What happened in the House of Commons yesterday is another to add to the long list of examples.