Last Friday, around 150 local residents filled St Peter’s Church Hall in Hopeville Avenue, Broadstairs to hear a speech on Brexit from their MP, Craig Mackinlay.
In his speech, entitled “Brexit – How we got to this point and where we go from here”, the South Thanet MP and Exiting the EU Select Committee member explained why he voted against Theresa May’s draft Withdrawal Agreement (WA) on the three occasions it was considered - and rejected - by the House of Commons.
Craig told the audience that, while he is supportive of Boris Johnson’s efforts to take out the so-called ‘Irish backstop’ from the WA, he has cautioned the new Prime Minister against accepting other measures that tie the UK to European laws in respect of state aid, competition, social and employment laws, and relevant tax matters, as well as the rulings of the European Court of Justice. Any new deal, the South Thanet MP explained, must be fundamentally different to the draft WA and its associated Political Declaration, or we should leave without signing a Withdrawal Agreement as per Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union.
Craig also told his audience he has received a personal assurance from Boris that the UK will leave the EU on 31st October 2019, deal or no deal.
After his speech the South Thanet MP took a series of questions from residents all of whom agreed with their MP: they just want Brexit done.
Craig Mackinlay MP commented:
“As we approach the new Brexit date of 31st October, I wanted to talk to St Peter’s residents about the many opportunities exiting the EU presents us with, dispel some of the gloomy forecasts, and listen to any concerns or comments my constituents have on this most pivotal of issues to the future of our country and democracy.
“I discussed my preference for a Canada-style free trade agreement with our friends and neighbours in the EU, but explained why we should not be at all fearful of leaving the EU, taking back control of our laws, money and border, and adapting to World Trade Organisation trade terms with the EU27 until that trade deal and future relationship can be agreed if necessary.
“The message from St Peter’s residents is loud and clear: ‘We welcome Boris Johnson’s refreshing and positive approach to Brexit and just want the Government to get on with leaving - no ifs, no buts, no excuses.’ I second that.”