Soubry & Umunna on defensive over ‘Cross Party Soft Brexit’ Group


Conservative MP Anna Soubry and her Labour counterpart Chuka Umunna (both pictured above) have been forced on the defensive today in a series of media interviews. This follows claims that their all-party Parliamentary Group on EU Relations is planning to test Theresa May’s patience to the limit by forcing a series of ‘knife edge’ commons votes over the course of the next parliament to try and force a ‘softer’ version of Brexit. With Mrs. May only able to afford six defections to be sure of carrying a vote it promises to be a testing couple of years for the diminished PM after her General Election gamble failed.

The pair were quizzed by Gary Gibbon from Channel 4 News, who reminded the politicians they were a ‘minority’ within their own parties.

Ms Soubry, insisted the group was not about the agendas of their party leaders but instead the ‘real world’:-

‘We want everything to go back on the table, the single market – all options.’

Gibbon replied:

‘But you’re a minority in your Parliamentary party and you’ve just been wrapped over the knuckles for trying to pursue the sort of agenda you’re talking about by your party leader.’

The former cabinet minister dismissed the remarks and replied:

‘We’re not talking about this, this is about out there, the real world.’

Mr Umunna then stated:

‘It’s not about Theresa May or Jeremy Corbyn or our parties.’

The heated exchange comes after Ms Soubry was blasted by Sky News’ Kay Burley over the cross-party group, which includes politicians from the SNP, the Lib Dems, the Green Party and Plaid Cymru. She said:

‘You Tory MPs have put your Prime Minister in a position where she only needs six of you to not vote with her on any particular vote, and she’s in hot water – it’s ridiculous!’

Umunna was also forced defend the group on the news channel, insisting its aim was to stop Brexit ‘turning Britain into the sweatshop of Europe’:-

‘We’ve come together to work to ensure we get the best deal through this Brexit process for our constituents and Parliament in this is not a passive bystander.

‘We have an active role to play and we’ll have the ability to vote on whatever deal the Government comes forward with.”

When asked if the group was a ‘whipped voting group of Remoaners’, the politician replied:

‘No, I obviously don’t accept the language that we’re Remoaners, we’re people who represent constituents and want to get a good deal.’

Westmonster Dave is the editor of alt-politics.com

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