“Those who talk about not wanting a no deal Brexit are being deliberately deceitful. It is Brexit full stop they wish to block”
Jacob Rees-Mogg, Twitter
Several MPs who voted for the Benn Act, which blocks a no-deal Brexit, have repeatedly stated that they are committed to leaving the EU. Labour MP Stephen Kinnock, for example, has consistently argued for an orderly Brexit. Kevin Barron, another Labour MP, at a launch event for a group campaigning for a Brexit deal last month said his party’s transition towards backing remain was “deeply damaging and ill-through through,” and insisted his party should deliver the 2017 manifesto commitment to honour the referendum result. Tory grandee Nicholas Soames voted three times for Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement in an attempt to achieve Brexit, before voting for the Benn Act.
A number of MPs said as much in the debates on the bill in the House of Commons. Soames said: “I rise to support this bill, but before I do so, I want to make it clear that I have always believed that the referendum result must be honoured.” Labour MP Caroline Flint, who voted for the bill, said she wanted to “look my leave voters in the eye and say, ‘Yes, I respected, as a remain voter, the decision to leave. We have now left.’” Another MP who voted for the bill, Labour’s Justin Madders, said: “I have always said that I will abide by the outcome of the referendum, but that does not mean I will do so at any cost.”
Rees-Mogg was accusing these MPs of lying. But more than that, he was accusing them of lying to Parliament. There is no evidence to support his claim that MPs not wanting a no-deal Brexit are “being deliberately deceitful.” Rees-Mogg slandered his fellow MPs.