Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement is a 'surrender document'

Andrew Bridgen

Monday, May 20, 2019

Andrew Bridgen has insisted the Prime Minister's Withdrawal Agreement Bill will fail to win the support of MPs.

The Conservative MP dismissed claims by Theresa May that the Bill would be "new and improved" when it returns to the Commons for a fourth time in early June.

"When she says new and improved offer, a bold offer, it was unacceptable already, it was a surrender document," Mr Bridgen told talkRADIO's Julia Hartley-Brewer.

"I wish it wasn't coming back at all. I'm not going to vote for it, I haven't voted for it on the previous three occasions... it's not a Withdrawal Agreement, it is a staying in agreement."

Last week, Mrs May agreed to set a timetable for the election of her successor as leader of the Conservative Party, after mounting pressure on her to do so.

But Mr Bridgen, who is a member of the European Research Group, said he would "struggle" to back a Tory leader who supported the Bill.

"I am going to struggle to support anyone in the leadership battle to come who votes for the Withdrawal Agreement Bill because it is an abdication of responsibility for the situation we find ourselves in," he said.

"I think there will be more Conservatives voting against the Withdrawal Agreement Bill when it is presented in two weeks' time then there was voting against meaningful vote three."

When pressed on why there was increasing support for Nigel Farage's Brexit Party ahead of the EU elections, Mr Bridgen said it came down to the Conservatives breaking their manifesto promise.

"Under Theresa May's leadership and her handling of the Brexit issue she has created the political vacuum that has allowed Farage and the Brexit Party to grow in to."

He added: "All we had to do was slay the dragon that was the EU, as we promised to do in our manifesto, and then there would never be a need for a dragon-slayer, would there?".

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