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LISTEN: Christine Jardine on Any Questions

Christine Jardine was on Any Questions last night along with Ann Widdecombe (representing the Reform Party), Thangam Debonnaire and Sir Robert Buckland.

She travelled to Bridgwater in Somerset.

The first question was on whether we should have closer relations with the EU, following this week’s news from Northern Ireland and the fourth anniversary of Brexit.

Christine said that Northern Ireland is a very special case and we should welcome this week’s agreement as a starting point. She pointed out that the people of Northern Ireland had been denied democracy for years because of this. Too cheers from the audience, she took Rishi Sunak to task for his comment that Northern Ireland now has the best of both world. She simply said “Didn’t we all used to have that?” She pointed out that businesses in her constituency were concerned at the amount of red tape they now have to complete to export to the EU that they didn’t before. While she didn’t see a quick path back to the single market, she thinks that that is the direction we should go in but the EU and the British people have to want it. But let’s hope that someone at Lib Dem HQ was listening to the audience cheers which surely suggest that the door is open for stronger arguments on closer relationships with our closest neighbour.

Thangam Debonnaire continued with the fiction that Labour’s Brexit would be just lovely but she sounded much more enthusiastic for closer ties than that position implied.

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