"To delay is to betray!" – Says UK Independence Party (UKIP) Leader Gerard Batten on Yvette Cooper's Brexit bill
A vote will be held next Tuesday in the House of Commons on Labour MP Yvette Cooper's Brexit delay bill. The bill states that if Parliament does not agree to some form of Withdrawal Agreement with the EU by February 26, a vote will be held to amend the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018.
If successful, this amendment would change 'Brexit Day' from March 29, 2019, to December 31 2019 – blocking a WTO Brexit, and potentially keeping the UK in the EU and forcing another European Parliament election.
UKIP Leader Gerard Batten said:
"Yvette Cooper claims that she wants the UK to have extra time to negotiate a deal, but the EU has announced that it will not take part in any more negotiations.
"Ms Cooper feigns concern for the economy and mouths the rhetoric of Project Fear on a daily basis. This bill isn't about protecting the economy; it's about creating a route to stop Brexit. We are currently on course to leave the EU on March 29, but Ms Cooper's bill will block this and any chance of a real WTO Brexit.
"If Parliament votes in favour of her bill next Tuesday and if it doesn't reach an agreement on Brexit by February 26 then we may be heading for an extension of Article 50 and European Parliament elections in May. Ms Cooper should think of her actions and if she wants the history books to associate her name with a gross betrayal of the British people.
"I am putting the political establishment on notice – to delay is to betray. If they delay Brexit, UKIP will stand a full list of candidates across the country in the event of a European Parliament election. UKIP sincerely does not want the UK to take part in the European elections in May, but if we do, UKIP will make it a rerun of the Referendum and a demand for a full clean exit from the European Union.
"The Brexit referendum of 2016 was held because Parliament could not agree on the continually divisive issue of EU membership and so they handed the decision to the people. The people voted to Leave. Parliament is now refusing to implement that decision and is now in open rebellion against the people.
"If Parliament betrays Brexit, there will be 17.4 million furious Leave voters. UKIP, the Party of Brexit, will be their choice at the ballot box."