EU Parliament

BREXIT BETRAYERS REVEALED: The 26 British MEPs who voted AGAINST starting EU trade talks

THESE are the 26 British MEPs who this week sided with the European Union and voted against Brussels opening post-Brexit trade talks with the UK.

In total 18 Labour representatives, two Tories, three Greens and the UK’s sole Lib Dem all backed a non-binding motion put forward by Guy Verhofstadt.The 26 were today branded “appalling” by one Tory MP, who accused them of deliberately voting against Britain’s national interest.

The motion was proposed by Brexit coordinator Guy VerhofstadtGETTY

The motion was proposed by Brexit coordinator Guy Verhofstadt

MEPs held a vote on the motion on Tuesday, during which it was passed by an overwhelming 557 in favour compared to just 92 against. However, given that it is for the EU Council of 27 member states to decide on sufficient progress, the result was largely symbolic.
But members at the Tory party conference were still left infuriated after two of their MEPs – Richard Ashworth and Julie Girling, rebelled and backed the dossier.
Senior party officials were “livid” to hear the pair had broken rank on the issue just 24 hours before the Prime Minister called for party loyalty.One senior Conservative source in Manchester told “It is completely unacceptable that two senior MEPs should put their personal interest on Brexit ahead of the national interest.“I will be interested to hear how they explain to businesses and workers in their constituencies, that are seeking clarification over Britain’s future relationship with the EU, why they want to delay the start of crucial talks over trade.

“They have undermined our negotiators and risk playing into the EU’s hands.”

These British MEPs voting against further talks are behaving appallingly

Tory MP Robert Jenrick

And Tory MP Robert Jenrick raged: “Whatever your views of Brexit, these British MEPs, voting against further talks, are behaving appallingly.”Four Tories – Daniel Dalton, Dan Hannan, James Nicholson and Kay Swinburne – voted against the motion whilst the rest all abstained.All of Ukips 19 MEPs also rejected the motion, with the part’s own amendment to it calling for a new trade deal being comfortably defeated.

Explaining Labour’s decision to vote against opening trade talks, Labour MEP Richard Corbett said not enough guarantees have yet been secured on citizens rights.

He said: “It will be impossible to move on to the next stage of the negotiations unless the Tories start engaging constructively with our EU negotiating partners with the level of detail needed to advance key questions, including on citizens’ rights and securing the Good Friday Agreement.

“Labour MEPs believe that clearer guarantees are needed on citizens’ rights, and that there is scope for progress to be made on this in the next round of talks in October.”

He added: “The three million EU citizens in the UK and 1.3 million British citizens in the rest of the EU are still living under a cloud of uncertainty – they deserve clarity and reassurances over their future.“And on Northern Ireland, the Tory government, not to mention its DUP enablers, must explain how exactly they envisage a borderless border if the UK is to leave the customs union.“With one more round of negotiations until EU heads of government meet at the end of this month, this resolution should be a wake-up call to the Tory government that it is time they got serious about Brexit and stopped putting the unity of their party before the future of our country.

“The Tories need to spend less time arguing with each other and more time answering the myriad questions posed by Brexit, if we are to avoid the prospect of a no-deal outcome, which would be disastrous for jobs, trade and rights.”

Afterwards Liam Fox, the International Trade Secretary, mocked the vote for its “unsurprising outcome”, insisting it will have no impact on the actual talks process.He told “In the most accurate sense, it doesn’t matter at all. The European Parliament has no say in the process.“That will be decided by the heads of government in the European Council, where they will give their instructions to the Commission, who will then carry out the negotiations.

“So, it’s an opinion. Were any of us surprised by it? No, we weren’t. Will it really make a difference? No, it won’t.”


* Lucy Anderson, London, Labour

* Paul Brannen, North East England, Labour

* Richard Corbett, Yorkshire and the Humber, Labour

* Set Dance, London, Labour

* Neena Gill, West Midlands, Labour

* Theresa Griffin, North West England, Labour

* Mary Honeyball, London, Labour

* John Howarth, South East England, Labour

* Wajid Khan, North West England, Labour

* Jude Kirton-Darling, North East England, Labour

* David Martin, SCotland, Labour

* Alex Mayer, East of England, Labour

* Linda McAvan, Yorkshire and the Humber, Labour

* Claude Moraes, London, Labour

* Sion Simon, West Midlands, Labour

* Catherine Stihler, Scotland, Labour

* Derek Vaughan, Wales, Labour

* Julie Ward, North West England, Labour


* Richard Ashworth, South East England, Conservatives

* Julie Girling, South West England, Conservatives


* Catherine Bearder, South East England, Liberal Democrats


* Jean Lambert, London, Green Party

* Molly Scott Cato, South West England, Green Party

* Keith Taylor, South East England, Green Party


* Martin Anderson, Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein


* Jill Evans, Wales, Plaid Cymru

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