Brexit: Anne Main questions the benefit of a short extension to Article 50

27th February 2019

Speaking in a debate on leaving the European Union, Anne Main asks what could be achieved by a short extension to Article 50 in the event that Parliament had rejected the deal.

I have listened very carefully to just every debate on this topic, and I understand that the European Union would give an extension only if it thought there was a reasonableness behind the request; I can perfectly understand that. Will my right hon. Friend tell me what rationale we would give to ask for this very short and limited extension, given that the House will have already rejected the newly negotiated deal? I cannot think what else could happen in those couple of months that would be helpful.

My hon. Friend is asking me to go deeper into the realms of hypothetical speculation. Tempting though that is, all I can say is that a lot would depend on where we had got to in the negotiations, the reasons for which the House in these hypothetical circumstances had rejected the revised agreement and so on.


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