Tory Brexiteer complains that Brexit is driving people 'completely barking mad'

PUBLISHED: 11:38 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 11:42 04 July 2019

Lord Robathan in the House of Lords. Photograph: House of Lords.

Lord Robathan in the House of Lords. Photograph: House of Lords.

Archant

A former Tory minister has complained that people had been driven 'completely barking mad' by Brexit, and admitted he had been left 'depressed' by politics since the result.

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Lord Robathan admitted at Westminster to having been "pretty depressed" about politics for a number of years.

The Conservative Brexiteer peer also believed the UK was not properly prepared for a no-deal Brexit, which he insisted he did not want.

However, he also warned the unelected House of Lords against trying to block Brexit, which had been backed by a majority of voters.

He dismissed a Labour demand for a joint inquiry by MPs and peers into the costs and implications of a no-deal Brexit as "a political ruse".

Speaking during a debate on the opposition motion, Lord Robathan said: "I am an optimist, but I am pretty depressed at the moment. I have been depressed for about two years about politics, perhaps longer, and the current situation is not good.

"Brexit has turned some people in this country completely mad - on both sides of the argument. Completely barking mad."

He added: "We are not properly prepared for a no-deal Brexit and I think it is a great pity.

"I can say absolutely categorically that I do not want no deal."

Lord Robathan said he found the motion proposed by Labour as "somewhat unedifying".

He went on: "It is frankly in my position a political ruse.

"It is designed to tie the hands of an incoming prime minister.

"This House is unelected, it is privileged, it is unaccountable. I think we should be very wary of trying to stop Brexit."

Pointing to the 17.4 million who voted to leave the EU, Lord Robathan said: "The public believed that their decision would be accepted - the electorate have spoken.

"We are in a huge privileged position which people are not in the country. I don't think we should be prepared - and that's the point of this motion - to tell the little people outside... 'Sorry guys you just got it wrong'. I think that would be very unwise.

"If we try to thwart the will of the people we would be very, very ill-advised."

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