Brexiteer MP: I was an idiot to ever think a referendum was a good idea

PUBLISHED: 09:21 14 March 2019

Charles Walker, Conservative MP for Broxbourne (Pic: House of Commons)

Charles Walker, Conservative MP for Broxbourne (Pic: House of Commons)

House of Commons

A Brexiteer Tory has said there should never be another referendum again, saying he was an idiot for ever backing one in the first place.

Charles Walker, the MP for Broxbourne, said that “to the day I die I will curse myself for ever thinking that a referendum was a good idea”.

And he told the BBC World Service’s Newshour programme: “I’m an idiot. I’m happy to admit to your listeners I’m an idiot.”

Walker told the programme that the government’s defeats this week were “the starting gun for what will inevitably be a general election”.

He said: “I haven’t been calling for a general election, I don’t want a general election.

“But actually, if a party can’t govern and get its legislation through, you have a general election.

“Now the thing the prime minister’s got going for her is she’s a lot more popular with the public than her own Members of Parliament.”

The MP said the current situation Parliament was in was “extraordinary”.

He said: “We had a country who voted Leave and most Members of Parliament voted Remain.

“They stood on the manifestos, both the Labour and Conservative Members of Parliament, or candidates at that stage, stood on the manifestos to honour the result of the referendum.

“So we have this extraordinary situation – we have the people who most want Brexit voting against Brexit, we have the Labour Party that over the weekend had five different positions on Brexit and we have the prime minister who has delivered the deal that gets us out legally.

“I mean, we’re in this extraordinary situation.”

Parliament was “failing”, Walker said.

“Parliament is elected to make decisions… if we had perfection in politics we wouldn’t need politics, ‘cause you’d have perfection,” he said.

“The reason we have politics is because the world is a complicated place that requires people to compromise and tack their beliefs.

“If anybody thinks that what is going on is a sound and sensible way to govern a country, I would really like to hear from them.”

But he dismissed calls for a second referendum on Brexit.

“We should never, ever have another referendum,” he said.

“To the day I die I will curse myself for ever thinking that a referendum was a good idea.

“I’m an idiot. I’m happy to admit to your listeners I’m an idiot.”

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