Henry Smith, a Brexit backing Tory MP has sensationally claimed that within the highest echelons of the British Establishment there are serious attempts to undermine or stop Brexit altogether. The Brexiteer warned attempts to “ignore” the results of the 2016 referendum could be “very dangerous” for British democracy. He also suggested stopping Brexit could turn into a “serious death bill” for politics in the United Kingdom.
Speaking to The Daily Express, Smith said:
“There is a very strong effort by the establishment to reverse the referendum results of 2016. That is coming from both the EU establishment, external to the UK, but is also coming very strongly from inside the UK.
“Some people at the very top of Government – if you look at the make-up of the Cabinet – most of those in position are people who supported the Remain campaign.
“The Civil Service as well were in favour of the UK remaining in the European Union. I think there is a natural aversion at the very top of the establishment to resist Brexit.”
The Civil Service has repeatedly come under attack during negotiations with Brussels – with Labour MP Kate Hoey branding government officials “very clever” for their alleged attempts to keep Britain closely aligned to the bloc.
Responding to calls for a second referendum on the final terms of the Brexit withdrawal agreement, Mr Smith continued: “I think it’s very dangerous for our democracy in this county if that result of June 2016 is ignored. It was the largest vote for anything ever in British history to leave the European Union.
“People knew what they were voting for and the Remain campaign spent more than twice as much as the Leave campaign. The Government officially backed the Remain campaign. So I think there are very strong forces, very powerful forces trying to reverse that result.
“I think if they were successful in doing that actually would be a serious death bill.”
He added: “That might sound melodramatic but I think actually that’s what’s at stake. This isn’t just about national sovereignty. It’s also about the robustness of our democratic system.”
This comes as International trade secretary and Brexiteer Liam Fox has caused uproar by stating that there is now just a 50% chance of Britain leaving the EU if Theresa May’s deal is rejected by Parliament.
Speaking in the Sunday Times, Fox said that voting for the prime minister’s Brexit plan was the only way to be “100% certain” that the UK will leave the EU.
He stated: “If we were not to vote for that, I’m not sure I would give it much more than 50-50.”
The disgraced former defence secretary also claimed that it was a “matter of honour” for MPs to back the prime minister in the House of Commons. Failure to do so, he said, would be “incendiary.”
Fox also cautioned that there would be “unknowable consequences” if Parliament votes against the Brexit plan by claiming that trust in politics would be further eroded. National polling has stated that less than 20% of the UK public support Theresa May’s deal with many considering it a sell-out.
“Parliament cannot now, with any honour, renege on that result. Were they to do so, I think you would shatter the bond of trust between the electorate and parliament. And I think that would put us into unprecedented territory with unknowable consequences.”
Seizing on the comments Gina Miller & George Soros campaign group Best for Britain spokesperson, Layla Moran MP, said: “Brexit not happening isn’t 50-50 as Liam Fox says. It’s actually 56-44. That’s the way the public now feels about us stopping this badly-led disaster and strengthening ourselves within the EU.
The only thing that is shattering the bond of trust between electorate and parliament is the refusal of ministers like Liam Fox to trust people with the final say on Brexit.”