‘This deal will not heal the nation’
- Credit: PA Archive/PA Images
A Remain MP who abstained on triggering Article 50 now backs a People's Vote over Theresa May's deal.
Norman Lamb, who campaigned for Remain but whose North Norfolk constituency voted heavily for Brexit, said he does not believe the deal will heal a divided nation.
The Liberal Democrat said: 'I thought it was right to take some time to properly read the deal. I was shocked and found it extraordinary that so many people came out so quickly to either praise or condemn it. We currently have two tribes shouting at each other and it is no way to conduct politics.
'I have a responsibility to make the best judgment in the national interest. I do not think this deal resolves anything. Therefore I cannot back Theresa May's deal. She has attempted to find a place between two stark positions. But I have been lobbied by both Remainers and Leavers to vote against the deal.
'Since the referendum we have not confronted a lot of the issues we face as a country – a lot of the issues that led to the Brexit vote in the first place. And the deal would only prolong the agony.
You may also want to watch:
'If the deal healed the divide in our nation I would be happy to vote for it. But it does not. I do not think we achieve our object by supporting it.'
And Lamb – who decided he could not vote against triggering Article 50 because his constituency backed Brexit and controversially did not vote with his party – confirmed he now thinks the best way to move forward is to hold a second referendum with the choice to stay in the EU on the ballot paper.
- 1 Michael Gove asked FIVE TIMES to explain what a 'substantial meal' is
- 2 BBC presenter attracts complaints after calling Brexiteers 'headbangers, zealots and quislings'
- 3 Michael Gove accused of going 'full Trump' after attacking Good Morning Britain's ratings
- 4 British expats seethe at post-Brexit travel restrictions
- 5 Keir Starmer mocks Tory heckler who said he was speaking in 'hindsight' with prediction
- 6 Brexiteer claims it will be '25 years' before UK gets sovereignty back
- 7 Netherlands causes hilarity with use of Brexit 'monster' to issue warning to citizens
- 8 Brexiteer mocked after dreaming up term to describe Britain's Covid vaccination programme
- 9 Scotland should 'aim to rejoin EU in full' after Brexit, SNP told
- 10 Michael Gove tells Piers Morgan boycotting GMB had been 'good advice'
'I think this now has to go back to the British people,' he said. 'This is a fatally divided government and I do not think the British people can be expected to trust it.
'It is almost inevitable that this deal cannot get through parliament. The government has lost the support of the DUP and around 90 Tory MPs have said they will vote against the deal.
'The road to salvation is fraught with high danger but I believe that we must go back to the people. There is no guarantee that it would heal the divide. But I do think this is the best way out of the current position we are in.
'I have always argued the case for Remain. But I would like Britain to be in a radically reformed European Union not to go back to the status quo we had before – that would not answer any of the concerns people had.'
A vote on May's deal is expected on December 12.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.