Bow Group Senior Patron, Lord Lamont, claims Brexit will help Britain avoid a catastrophe

The Conservative peer and former Chancellor Lord Norman Lamont has claimed Brexit has saved Britain from a ‘great crisis’ of sovereignty that would have been caused by the European Union’s commitment to greater political integration.

Speaking in a discussion about the Government’s position on a customs arrangement with the EU after Brexit on the BBC’s Week in Westminster, he insisted that leaving the EU was the best option for defending British sovereignty.

Lord Lamont said: “Although I belong to the Eurosceptic wing, I didn’t immediately come out when the referendum was held and say ‘I support leave’.

“I thought exactly about this, having been involved in negotiating the opt-outs. Whether we could go on  maintaining this position.

 “I had long discussions with David Cameron about it - is it better to be half-in or is it better to be out out?

“I actually just came to the conclusion: by getting out of this we are avoiding a great crisis further down the road.

“A conflict between a European political union, a European identity and our national ability to make our own laws through our own parliament.

“I thought it was better to avoid that.”

The Government's vision for Brexit has been frustrated by a series of high-profile defeats in the House of Lords.

The Lords have now voted for 14 amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill which aim to keep the UK in the customs union and various EU agencies after Brexit. 

The votes sparked fury among Brexiteers, who accused the lords of defying the will of the people.

A petition to give the electorate a referendum on the abolition of the House of Lords currently has 159,339 signatures and describes the chamber as “a place of patronage where unelected and unaccountable individuals hold a disproportionate amount of influence and power which can be used to frustrate the elected representatives of the people”.

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Saturday, May 12, 2018