Philip Hammond: No deal would ‘betray’ referendum

Mr Hammond said "unelected" people "pull the strings"

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The former Chancellor of the Exchequer has warned if Boris Johnson takes Britain out of the EU without a deal, it would be a "betrayal" of the 2016 referendum result.

In his first public comments since resigning from government, Philip Hammond accused "unelected" politicians of "pulling the strings" of the government.

Mr Hammond resigned from his post last month ahead of the Johnson premiership, saying he could "never sign up to" a no-deal Brexit.

He said early signs for a Brexit deal "are not encouraging", warning that demands to abolish the backstop had become a "wrecking" stance over a deal.

"The unelected people who pull the strings of this Government know that this is a demand the EU cannot and will not accede to," the Tory backbencher wrote in The Times on Wednesday.

He claimed that, whether they voted Leave or Remain, "Most people in this country want to see us leave in a smooth and orderly fashion."

"Parliament faithfully reflects the view of that majority and it will make its voice heard. No-deal would be a betrayal of the 2016 referendum result," he added.

Meanwhile, Speaker John Bercow vowed to "fight with every breath in my body" against any attempt by the Prime Minister to suspend Parliament in order to force through a no deal.

He told an audience at the Edinburgh Fringe festival that he "strongly" believes the House of Commons "must have its way".

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