Norman Lamb explains why he is voting against the Brexit deal

Lib Dem MP Norman Lamb has explained why he will be voting against the Brexit deal on his Facebook page.

He abstained on the vote to trigger Article 50 after promising his heavily Leave voting constituency that he would not block it.

He can’t vote for the withdrawal agreement, though, because it means further uncertainty.

I was determined to take time to consider Theresa May’s Brexit deal, rather than rushing to a judgement. We all have a responsibility to make the best judgement in the national interest.

Frustratingly, I do not think this deal resolves anything. We face years of further turmoil with fraught argument over our future relationship. Today I questioned the PM on immigration and on the impact on science. Nothing is resolved. Everything is up in the air. Uncertainty for the science community will be really damaging.

I believe that we must therefore go back to the people to ask for their verdict on our country’s future in the light of what we now know.

My plea is that we properly address the genuine and real grievances that led many people to vote to leave the EU and that we then fight for a reformed Europe which is flexible and dynamic and which offers a compelling vision which might help us confront and defeat the rise of the far right across Europe.

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6 Comments

  • Sandra Hammett 29th Nov '18 - 9:24pm

    ‘My plea is that we properly address the genuine and real grievances that led many people to vote to leave the EU and that we then fight for a reformed Europe which is flexible and dynamic and which offers a compelling vision’
    That is what we should have been saying for the last 2 years. It should have been the very basis our pitch to the people.
    Hopefully this call is not too late to be heard.

  • Arthur Bailey 29th Nov '18 - 10:20pm

    Norman, I have supported you as my MP in word and deed for many years, but in this, as I stated in Facebook, I have to disagree with you.
    Simply, we are in a difficult situation, time is running out, and the EU leaders are going to do all they can to stop us leaving.
    If Mrs May is defeated, then what, will Mrs May then have a 2nd referendum or will she then leave with no deal, or will she call a general Election?
    Can we really risk the EU agreeing to further discussions to change the deal?
    If she does call a second referendum, what will be on the ballot paper, will it be a choice of her deal or no deal? Will it be her deal or Remain in the EU, or will it be 3 choices, her deal, no deal or to remain?
    If she chooses her deal or no deal, we will not get a chance of an end to Brexit, and no deal will be a disaster
    If we get a choice of all 3, and 35% choose her plan, 25% choose no deal, that means that remain will have 40% and win, but that means that 60% voted no to remain but lost!! is this democratic, and this will cause so much more damage to society than we have at present, and those who voted for Brexit will rightly feel well aggrieved.
    The other option is a general election, which would probably lead to a Labour Government with Jeremy Corbyn as PM, and this thought is the most frightening of all!
    the options with the exception, of looking at our opinion polls situation at present, it is probable that you will be the only Lib Dem MP left because of your support in North Norfolk from supporters of all parties.
    I really do want us to remain in the EU, but at the moment, we are in a difficult position of lose, lose and lose again.
    We all want a second referendum, but only if we genuinley feel that remain will win with a large majority, and not the small one in the last referendum that has caused so much anger in this wonderful Country of ours!
    At present Mrs May holds all the Aces, and if her plan, as unpalatable as it is, is far better than No deal or a Labour Government!
    I respectfully ask you to reconsider your position on this.
    What she offers is not good, but we could have the even worse options of No Deal or a labour Government, and neither of these is actually acceptable for a lot of voters.
    I just hope that Cameron and his fellow Tory Brexiteers along with farage are satisfied with what they have done to this Country!

  • Ann Higgins 30th Nov '18 - 8:56am

    Arthur – the next vote does not have to be a straight 3 way fight. Having it run over two weeks with a run off, or a Single transferable Vote would I believe solve the problems you raise.

    I know that the idea of rejecting May’s lousy deal is scary. We are all rightly scared of a no deal Brexit. But once we leave we have crossed the Rubicon, with little if any chance of return. And who is to say what will happen in the transition period? Do you have any fsith in this government, or the likely alternative, to do any better than they have over the last 2 years? However scary it is I think we have to keep our nerve and go all out for Remain. I’m not sure I could live with myself if I didn’t.

  • Arthur Bailey: Jeremy Corbyn is unlikely to become PM. A Labour majority government is unlikely while Corbyn is leader, because he is unable to get the swing votes that are absolutely necessary for this. He remains popular among his cultist supporters, but these are mostly concentrated in seats that are safe for Labour anyway. It’s also difficult to see him successfully assembling a coalition with him at the head.

    As for the idea that we could lose all our seats apart from Norman’s, that too is extremely unlikely, unless you have some evidence that our support is slipping in our held or target seats. I can only speak for my own locality, but I can say that that’s definitely not happening here in Kingston and Richmond — in the local elections in May this year, we threw out the Tory administrations and won lanslide victories. True, we slipped in neighbouring Sutton, but we ran the Council there already, and it’s likely that local issues played a part.

    Ann Higgins: Absolutely in agreement.

  • Yeovil Yokel 30th Nov '18 - 11:05am

    Well said Ann.

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