St Helens MP Marie Rimmer says people's vote may be needed on Brexit

Marie Rimmer
Marie Rimmer
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Marie Rimmer has conceded that MPs may need to go back to the people over Brexit.


The St Helens South and Whiston MP told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that she would be supporting Labour’s Yvette Cooper’s amendment to Prime Minister Theresa May’s ‘Plan b’ motion today.

The cross-party bill will seek to put a motion to extend Article 50 until the end of 2019 if no deal is in place by the end of February. Currently the UK is set to leave the EU on March 29.

Ms Rimmer said the amendment is about giving power to Parliament to ensure the UK does not end up crashing out of the EU without a deal.

The Labour MP said a no-deal scenario and Theresa May’s deal would “damage” the country’s economy and said the public may need to be called upon to vote again if the amendment fails.

“I don’t want it to be yes or no, in or out,” Ms Rimmer said.

“None of us knew the intricacies, the complexities and the impact it would have.

“Given the knowledge we have all gained, two years on, I would like an assurance from the public about which way to go.”

Ms Rimmer added: “I want to support Yvette Cooper’s amendment to see what can happen in Parliament.

“We’ve tried to go as far as we can. We’ve tried to honour the original result. We don’t want to tear that up.

“We’re working as hard as we can to get a deal that will not damage the economy of the country.

“A crash out deal, and the Prime Minister’s deal would be detrimental and damage the country and I cannot support either of them.”

Ms Rimmer’s comments come just days after St Helens North MP Conor McGinn gave his backing to a ‘People’s Vote’.

The Labour MP said he had “reluctantly reached the conclusion” that MPs may have to go back to the people after admitting that a general election was now looking “unlikely”.

Mr McGinn said: “I think the only way to resolve this is to have a second referendum, if we can’t get a general election.

“I’m open to persuasion about what the options on the ballot paper should be.

“Theresa May’s deal vs remain, that’s one of the options that’s being considered at the minute.

“But if it gets to the stage where we are 24 hours away from crashing out then I’ll have to look at how we can prevent that because my absolute priority is avoiding crashing out with no deal.”