Chris Philp – BBC Daily Politics – Brexit Withdrawal Bill

Joined now in the studio by the Conservative MP Chris Philp and Labour’s Shadow Brexit Minister Paul Blomfield is still with us –
Paul Blomfield 7 Labour MPs rebelled last night is there anything that you
will be saying to them bearing in mind there was a three line whip on this

I think they I think they probably know the views of the majority of the
parliamentary party and frankly

– is that it? – frankly well frankly given the
build-up to that vote that was a pretty small rebellion and if you compare it
with the deep divisions in the Conservative Party we have the
extraordinary phenomenon

We had no rebels it’s zero. Well let me just make the point Suella Fernandes who is a Treasury parliamentary private secretary openly organizing in rebellion against
the Chancellor of the Exchequer now that’s division

Right explain that
to me what sort of rebellion is she organizing he works in the Treasury so
was what she organized convener of the European research group which is the
sort of extreme brexit faction inside the Conservative Party
she’s been coordinating a letter and seeking to kick out the idea that there
should be smooth transitional arrangements by some membership or
continuation of the single market participation in the customs union which
is what Philip Hammond wants

Right and just before I come to you on that
Chris Philp but Chris does make a good point there weren’t any rebels on the Tory
side so as I say again the discipline in the labour party if you don’t want to
look at the ones who rebelled what about Caroline Flint and we heard there who
has abstained

Well we’ve all made our views very clear as a shadow brexit team
and we’ve been gate free positively with with Caroline we’ve made our views clear
to her right she is a backbench member and she cast her vote or didn’t cast it
as it happens in the way that she’s thought fit I think she was wrong are
you worried about this move by Suella Fernandez your colleague to put pressure
on the government for a harder or tougher brexit than is being outlined at
the moment

No not remotely she’s arguing and others are arguing to implement the
will of the British people expressed by referendum people are perfectly this is
a big debate it’s a big national debate we’re negotiating with Europe we’re
debating in Parliament how to go about this quite difficult but very historic
task and it’s reasonable for MPs in fact it’s MPs it’s a duty to put forward
different points of view about how we might because you don’t trust the
government to do the right thing and by the way I know I understand her letter
is completely uncontentious and and is by is essentially supportive is entirely
supportive of the approach the government’s taking so this is a
ridiculous sort of storm in a teacup Westminster story let’s focus on the
substance of the issue which is how we go about negotiating a good free-trade
deal with Europe and how we go about well and hang on how we go about
executing and delivering brexit in an orderly fashion which this bill even
Dominic grieve just on that clip admits this bill is necessary to come out of
the European Union in an orderly fashion yet labour irresponsibly and
opportunistically voted against it

right Paul Bromfield

so Suella’s letter newsletter on the
transitional Deal is in direct contradiction of the position of the
chancellor of the exchequer conservative backbenchers have called for her to be
sacked now that’s a division right I mean we’ll come back to that at the end
but there is a vote tonight Chris Philp and this is on the what they call the
public bill committees that scrutinized the bill and the government
wants to make sure that there is a majority in favor of the Conservatives
on every committee which does go against the grain here and it’s a little bit
like marking your own homework and always awarding yourself an a star well not really I mean if the motion passes and the government side gets a majority
majority of one on these bill committees that will be the will of the house so
you can’t talk about the government being in a minority if we win the vote
by definition we’ll be in a majority it’s not possible to govern without
having a majority on the bill committees and in fact when Labour were in
precisely the same position in 1976 they approach the problem in exactly the same
way right we’re trying to compare minority governments here but you do
have a majority you do have a working majority in that sense


so why do
you have to to use jeremy corbyn’s words rigged Parliament but it’s not rigging
Parliament there’s gonna be a vote in parliament a democratic vote in
Parliament on the way the committee gets constituted and if we win that vote we’ll
by definition have a majority and the committee will get constituted
accordingly so it’s completely democratic and when Labour did it in
1976 and they tried to slip it through on a Friday we’re doing it openly and
transparently with a vote and if we win that vote we will by definition have a

Do you accept there need to be significant changes to this bill when
MPs have the chance to scrutinize it Well I think every bit of legislation
benefits from fine-tuning from the you know very fine minds we have in the
House of Commons including Dominic Grieve and of course there are bits that
I’m sure can be improved upon I mentioned one of them in my speech
yesterday but the second reading last night was about the principle of the
bill and Dominic grieved the House of Lords constitutional committee even
Kier Starmer in his opening speech accepted we need as something like this
to get through those thousand statutory instruments and it was I think
unacceptable for labour to try and sabotage the process by voting against
it at second reading when the could amend it at committee stage

Right well do you accept
the this does need to be able to go through
in order for progress to be made on brexit Giles Fraser and that Labour is
being opportunist to say and use Chris Philps words

Yes I do actually and I
think it needs to go through and remainers who are complaining that you
know power is being taken away from the Parliament and given to the executive of
course the great power snatch in Parliament is the European Union itself so the idea
that you know power is being repatriated that’s exactly what this is all about
and that’s why it needs to go through however Dominic Grieve is right is that
this does this bill the way in which this is being done does also give too
much power to the executive and that really does need to be addressed in

Right how long should the transition period last Paul Bromfield
there seems to be some confusion on labour side about what status the single
market and customs union should have beyond the transition period but let’s
start with how long the transition period should be

Well our whole focus in
the whole negotiations is the right solution for the economy for jobs and
for livelihoods and that means but every once everyone’s rise that means that we
shouldn’t be putting numbers on we should be saying that the transition
period should be as short as possible but as long as necessary Right well that’s meaningless isn’t it I mean you know are we talking two years
are we talking three years and should the single market be on the tape be on
the table be on that Well we’re talking and we’re talking
about a period in which the negotiations are completed we imagine that that’s
going to be something between two and four years but to put false obstacles in
the way of successful negotiations there’s a stupid thing to do it’s what
this government is doing in a number of ways but it’s not in the interest of the
British economy

Paul it’s a trust issue here isn’t the trust issue is actually
that people that people’s perception widespread perception is that people
like you are actually just trying to trip up the process that actually you
you you you’ve got no love in your heart for leaving the European Union and
you’re desperately looking for ways to stop it and actually use you say all
this stuff on the surface but actually deep down what you’re trying to do is
trip it up and that’s what that’s what maybe answer that maybe a perception
because it’s one that some of the brexiteers keep pushing the truth is that
the host of us who did like me Dominic campaigned for remaining in the
European Union accept the verdict of British people the test for that was the
vote on article 50 I represent a constituency which voted 70% remain I
voted to trigger article 50 to take us out of the European Union that will
happen in March 2019 the question that this bill is about is about how we leave
whether it’s the car crash that the current government are creating or
whether we have a smooth transition we’re going to have to finish

3 Replies to “Chris Philp – BBC Daily Politics – Brexit Withdrawal Bill

  1. Labour played to bring the govt down on THE BIGGEST BILL for DECADES.

    and lost.

    You played it because you don't give a shit about UK voters, you just want to get your SCUZZY hands on power again.

    Look forward to DECADES of opposition, bozos.

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