The Brexit secretary spent 10 mins backing an extension to Article 50 then voted against it

Greg Evans
Friday 15 March 2019 12:30
news

On Thursday night, MPs voted on two very important amendments that would have huge ramifications on Brexit.

Whereas an amendment to hold a second referendum on the UK's membership to the European Union was defeated by 249 votes, an agreement to seek an extension of Article 50 was passed.

The extension was passed by 412 votes to 202, with 188 Tory MPs voting against the motion, with one of those being the actual Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay.

However, prior to the actual vote, the MP for North East Cambridgeshire gave a 10-minute speech detailing why he would be voting for the extension.

At the dispatch box in the Commons, he passionately wound up the debate by saying:

It is time for this house to act in the national interest, it’s time to put forward an extension that is realistic.

Barclay's decision to go against his word left many on Twitter completely dumbfound and perplexed at Barclay's sudden swerve.

As that last tweet points out, Barclay, whose job is to negotiate Brexit, now has to go to Brussels to try and negotiate something that he clearly doesn't support.

The EU have already hinted that they aren't keen on reopening negotiations, leaving this whole situation as encouraging and hopeful as scavenging for food in a post-apocalyptic wasteland.

According to the BBC's political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, Barclay wanted to retain some impartiality in the Tory party so voted against Theresa May who was in favour of the extension.

Barclay has since spoken to Tom Barton of BBC News where he attempted to clarify his position and why he voted against the extension.

Another unusual moment in Barclay's speech saw him reference the infamous Banksy painting that was shredded last year, immediately after it was sold at auction for more than £1 million.

When referencing the piece he claimed that the Labour party was effectively 'shredding the votes of 17.4 million people.'

Some members will remember the Banksy painting that went through the shredder. Indeed, my honourable friend the member for Ribble Valley, Mr Evans, had it on his Christmas card.

The reality of the leader of the opposition’s approach this week is that he is shredding the votes of 17.4 million people by turning his back on the referendum, going back on his word in his own manifesto and failing to listen even to his own front benchers.

Someone really should have told him that the value of that painting increased once it had been destroyed...

Oh well. Good luck in Brussels, Stephen...

More: Actor Rob Delaney posts epic Twitter thread about Brexit and austerity

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