Mike Gapes Ilford Recorder Column – August 2019

I Will Continue to Fight to Stay in the EU

In our Parliamentary democracy we often change Prime Minister without a General Election. In 1976 Harold Wilson retired. Labour MPs elected James Callaghan. In 1990 Margaret Thatcher was forced out. Conservative MPs elected John Major. In 2007 Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair stood down and was replaced by Gordon Brown. In 2016 Conservative David Cameron ran away after losing his EU referendum gamble. Theresa May took over.

Boris Johnson already had support of most Conservative MPs before his emphatic victory over Jeremy Hunt amongst individual party members. But the Parliamentary arithmetic has not changed. Johnson is a Prime Minister without a majority, dependent, like Theresa May, on ten Northern Irish Democratic Unionist votes. He may be determined to leave the European Union on 31 October, with or without an agreement, and regardless of the huge economic and political damage to our country. But there is no majority in Parliament to crash out with No Deal. The House of Commons is determined to assert control and stop Johnson pursuing his No Deal Brexit. His hard right government is focused entirely on winning back Tory support lost to the Brexit Party. His early bounce in the opinion polls is not yet enough. It will be a huge gamble for him to risk everything on a General Election.

As long as I am in Parliament, I will continue to vote in the national interest and support the wishes and interests of my constituents to Stop Brexit and Remain in the European Union.