John Lamont MP has today welcomed the announcement from the Prime Minister that she will seek to amend the Withdrawal Agreement, as the MP himself called for last week.
Today in the House of Commons, the Prime Minister announced that she will go back to the EU with proposed changes to the Withdrawal Agreement, with a specific pledge to amend the Northern Ireland backstop – the arrangement to deal with the UK border with Ireland if a trade deal is not negotiated within two years.
Last week, John Lamont MP was one of 118 Conservative MPs to vote against the Withdrawal Agreement.
The local MP, who remains committed to delivering Brexit, said the deal risked undermining the integrity of the United Kingdom. He also proposed amending the Withdrawal Agreement to “significantly alter or get rid of” the so-called Northern Ireland backstop.
The Prime Minister also ruled out a second referendum and announced that EU citizens living in the UK would not pay a fee in order to apply for settled status in the UK.
Commenting, John Lamont MP said: “I very much welcome this movement from the Prime Minister. Amending the Withdrawal Agreement is the most straightforward way of delivering Brexit and getting a deal through the Parliament and I would urge the EU to give any proposals serious consideration.
“The deal as it stands risks the integrity of the United Kingdom and would mean we enter into an uncomfortable half-way house of having to follow EU rules but having no say over them.
“Both the EU and the UK have repeatedly said they do not want the Northern Ireland backstop to be used, which begs the question why is it in the agreement at all?
John added: “It is disappointing that the SNP and Labour have failed to meaningfully engage in cross party talks by making demands they know the Prime Minister cannot accept. The Prime Minister is right to argue against a second referendum and against ruling out a No-Deal Brexit. To back either of these options would put us in the weakest possible negotiating position with the European Union.”
Last week, John voted against the Withdrawal Agreement, saying his preferred approach would be to “significantly alter or get rid of” the Northern Ireland backstop: