As Parliament enters the Christmas recess, the complications from the Referendum result are still unresolved.
Whatever may be disputed in the atmosphere surrounding Brexit - and that is most of it - it cannot be disputed that leaving the EU is much more complicated than those who advocated it either thought themselves, or pronounced publicly.
The dilemmas facing the Government are real, not imposed by Brussels or contrived by a conspiracy to somehow keep us in the EU. A deal to leave cannot have all that the nation may want, and there must be compromises.
As we leave Westminster, to do much listening over the holiday period, let me sum up where I think we are, and my own position for the benefit of constituents.
I was pleased the Prime Minister secured the support of her Party, and will continue to lead the country through this almost impossible period. Complaints that she is ‘a remainer’ and that this is colouring her views could not be more unfair. She has a strong and genuine determination to respect the Referendum result, and has worked hard to do so.
The preparations announced this week for ‘no deal’ are pretty shocking. The Government is required to do this however. Although leaving with no deal is still a remote possibility, it is certainly possible, and Government would be failing in its duty if it did not seek to ensure the least possible disruption. The PM has also to ensure that the EU is aware of our preparations as much as we must be aware of theirs.
But let me be perfectly clear. I would regard a ‘no deal’ outcome as a serious blow to the U.K., and will do all I can to prevent this.
The best way to achieve this is to see the current Withdrawal Agreement succeed in Parliament. It does not give every citizen what they want - it is impossible to reconcile a nation almost evenly split between those who wish to Remain in the EU and those who wish to leave. But it ensures for example that the U.K. leaves the EU political institutions and recovers the sovereignty that was important to many, whilst ensuring that goods travel over borders on March 30th as they do on March 29th.
Ultimately I believe there must be a compromise agreed - the country cannot come together otherwise, and I will do all I can to support such a position, and will continue to support the PM's proposal, which has much support in the country from those who require clarity to get on with their lives rather than be endlessly mired in the politics, which, in truth, may well have no end unless we can make a decision and move on.