I write concerning the situation as has developed concerning so-called ‘Brexit’. Specifically, I would like to put to you a series of questions.
Before the 2016 Referendum on UK membership of the European Union, you campaigned for the UK to Remain in the EU. Do you still consider that remaining in the EU would be better for the UK? If not, what has changed your mind? I simply ask for your considered opinion now as to whether it is better for the UK to remain a member of the EU; or if you now believe differently, why?
Your constituency voted ‘Remain’. Presumably, you feel – or felt – it was right to do so. However, regardless of this outcome, it is worth emphasising that you are your constituents’ representative, and not their delegate. (Certainly, this is – or was – the stance of Theresa May, who also campaigned for ‘Remain’ and whose constituency also voted so.) Do you concur that your duty as an MP is, first and foremost, to represent your constituents in their best interests? As a now Minister, cabinet collective responsibility determines that you vote with the government; however, your record, since the referendum, of almost always voting against UK membership of the EU shows that you mostly did so before becoming a Minister.
Were you, for example, whipped into voting ‘against the UK remaining a member of the European Atomic Agency Community (Euratom)… and against treating leaving Euratom separately from leaving the European Union’*, despite the consequences for supplies of nuclear fuel and medical isotopes, and effects on research?
And why did you vote ‘not to make publication of an assessment of the financial liability of the UK towards the EU, and a statement on the economic impact of the UK leaving the single market, a prerequisite for the Prime Minister giving notification of the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU’*, when such information would be of vital importance to a voting public surely entitled to it (and which David Cameron had neglected to undertake before the referendum)?
A year before becoming a Minister of State you voted for the triggering of Article 50; and also against the prior guaranteeing of the rights of EU citizens in the UK. Would you please explain why? Did you do so willingly or reluctantly?
When you campaigned for ‘Remain’, did you do so in what you considered your constituents’ and the country’s best interests? Or does your post-referendum voting against EU membership in parliament reflect a considered change of stance on what is best for your constituents and the country? If the latter, why?
Leaving aside the increasing knowledge of the duplicities and alleged illegalities that led to the referendum outcome, I need to ask you where you are now. The overly-simplistic binary choice in the referendum was to ‘Leave’ or ‘Remain’. The current situation – Theresa May’s ‘Brexit deal’ – does not satisfy either vote. Nobody voted for what we have before us, which, as things stand, is not to be put to the people. Why is it that this vote is restricted to Parliament and denied a now more aware people, whereas the government abnegated responsibility to us for the referendum itself when we were so collectively ignorant of the ramifications? If passed by parliamentary vote, it would bring about a situation inferior to that which the country already enjoyed as a full and influential EU member – the situation you formerly advocated. If it is not passed, are you – who campaigned for ‘Remain’ – accepting of the (currently) sole remaining ‘No Deal’ option?
I believe – correct me if I’m mistaken – that you understand this. So, do you intend to vote for Theresa May’s deal, regardless, when you know full well that it is not what any of your constituents – Leave or Remain – voted for, and which disadvantages the country relative to full membership? Do you have confidence that her ‘faith in God’ convinces her that she is doing the right thing? As a Minister, are you going to continue voting in favour of a direction that will harm the nation – contrary to your stance before the referendum? If so, then have you considered that you are failing in your duty to your constituents?
This has become critical. That we have arrived at such a perilous situation because of the self-serving aspirations of certain individuals ought to serve as reminder that this is far more important than individual parliamentary careers. As an MP, will you do the right thing by your constituents? And as a Minister, will you do the honourable thing by our country?