Single Market defeat sends a clear message

Vince Cable and Liberal Democrats on Europe March 2017

The Government have received their eleventh, twelfth and thirteenth defeats in the House of Lords during the Report stage of the EU Withdrawal Bill.

A vote on an amendment to ensure our future interaction with EU law and agencies was passed by a cross-bench majority of 298 to 227

A further vote on an amendment to remove the exit date from the bill passed by a cross-bench majority of 311 to 233.

And finally, an amendment that would keep Britain in the single market passed with a cross-bench majority of 245 to 218

These votes were a victory for common-sense.

Of course if the UK wishes to remain in specific agencies, such as Euratom, it should be able to. This allows us to replicate EU law and means that we can continue our role in any agency that we wish to if it is of obvious benefit.

The Government needs to swallow its pride and keep the benefits of being in European agencies.

Furthermore, the victory on the single market amendment sends a clear message to those sat around the Cabinet table that Parliament won’t just sit back while Theresa May leads us towards a hard Brexit.

245 Peers from all parties and none have voted to stay in the Single Market and protect the UK economy, defeating a Government hell-bent on pursuing ideology over prosperity.