BROMLEY & Chislehurst MP Bob Neill defied the Conservative whip by voting against the government “for the first time ever” this evening.
The Government has struck down an attempt to add conditions to its Brexit bill calling for MPs and peers to have the final say on any deal to leave the European Union. MPs voted 326 to 293 to reject amendment 110, tabled by the Labour MP Chris Leslie. A handful of Tory MPs including Mr Neill supported it, but the motion was passed by a majority of 33.
Speaking in the Commons, Mr Neill said the Government was on “very borrowed time”, adding that it would be a “scandal” if the UK ended up relying on World Trade Organisation rules without MPs having a say. The former minister later tweeted that he had voted against the Government "for the first time ever”.
Writing on his own website last week, Mr Neill, who “campaigned assiduously” for Britain to remain, said: “The vote was to leave the EU, not to make ourselves poorer. I have and will continue to press for the best possible safeguards, and opportunities, for our key economic interests, particularly the financial and professional services sector, which is by far the largest source of employment and wealth in our constituency, and our greatest national economic asset.
“I will also be pushing the Government to prioritise the rights of EU citizens living in Britain, who make a wonderful contribution to our country and I appreciate have been living through unacceptable uncertainty following the vote.”