Bow Group calls for Autumn Statement Brexit Amendment to confirm Article 50 deadline

Economic
Thursday, October 18, 2018
The Bow Group
Bow Group calls for Autumn Statement Brexit Amendment to confirm Article 50 deadline
 
The Bow Group proposes an amendment to the upcoming Government Autumn Statement Budget now planned for the 29th October. Andrea Jenkyns MP and other backbench MPs support the amendment.
 
With talk of pushing back the March 29th deadline, and having moved the Budget to a date prior to any agreement on our exit terms with the EU, the Chancellor creates a danger that Article 50 could be extended or even suspended in the knowledge the UK remains committed to the Multiannual Fiscal Framework. This would not be in-keeping with the result of the Brexit referendum.

Key Points
  • The UK voted two years ago to take back control from the EU and give it back to Parliament. 
  • By requiring the Brexit bill to be funded separately from the Budget the EU will have to make a positive case for future funding. Parliament may not be willing to fund the total bill demanded by the EU. This strengthens our hand in negotiations.
  • The amendment gives contingency to a future UK-EU deal by releasing funds in advance that would support the UK in its new found independence but only by Parliament’s approval.
  • If we extend a deal, in this case declaring Article 50, that was time limited by Treaty and by Parliament then the case for indefinite suspension has been made. Uncertainty is harmful for the UK. The last General Election was fought on the understanding we would leave by the end of March 2019.
Our suggested amendment:
 
"Her Majesty's Government, having declared its intention to leave, and having passed legislation to leave, will pay no contribution to the European Union and its institutions after March 29th 2019"

Quotes

"We voted to take back control, and it's always been the case that Parliament oversees the budget, not the other way around. It's absurd that there is to be a Budget before the final Brexit deal. That is effectively writing a blank check to the EU, and that leaves the danger that Article 50 may be extended with full funding. I have personally heard from both Ministers and Whips that this is a possibility. What I would like to propose, if this is the case following the Chancellor's Budget, in the Finanace Bill is an Amendment to say we will not pay any further monies to the EU after the 29th March 2019 without further Parliamentary approval. We need that guaratnee because this is what the country voted for."
Andrea Jenkyns, Conservative MP for Morley & Outwood
 
"Our proposal would allow the Government to negotiate our exit from the European Union without the impression that money has been agreed to be sent to support the Multiannual Fiscal Framework.
 
An agreement can only be agreed after every parliament in the European Union has approved the Government's proposal. Only then can money be offered as part of that deal and that would require a vote by a Ways and Means vote of our Parliament.
 
It allows Parliament to take back control of our finances and given that new money would need to be approved to fund a Brexit deal allows Parliament’s vote on the deal to be binding. Should the Chancellor fail to recognise this important chance to take back control of funding for public services then the Budget cannot be expected to be supported. We will not allow Brexit to drift into the doldrums to suit the Brussels bullies."
Dr Jon Stanley, Bow Group Senior Research Fellow

"With or without a deal we leave the European Union on March 29th 2019, Parliament should therefore not approve any budget that allows the Exchequer to make any payment to the EU after that date, without their subsequent consent. We cannot allow a neverendum scenario where we slide into a transitional period or customs arrangement where we are in all but name still in the EU. The Chancellor should know that any attempt to sneak a budget through that allows money to continue to flow to the EU will be opposed by Brexiteer MPs tooth and nail, and shoud prepare his statement accordingly."
Cllr Benjamin Harris-Quinney, Bow Group Chairman