Last night in the House of Commons I voted for the Brady Amendment to the EU Withdrawal Agreement which was passed by the House by 317 votes to 301.
This was an important victory for the Government and gives the Prime Minister a clear mandate to ask the EU Commission to reopen the text of the Withdrawal Agreement and take out the Northern Ireland Backstop so that the deal can be ratified by Parliament before we leave the EU on 29th March 2019. There may be intransigence from the EU and so negotiating a change to the Backstop will not be easy. But the Prime Minister's hand has been strengthened by last night's result.
As your MP I want to ensure a smooth, orderly exit from the European Union on 29th March. For that reason I was also pleased last night to vote against Amendments brought by Yvette Cooper, Dominic Grieve and others that were designed to delay or stop Brexit and bring about a second referendum. Those calling for a second referendum must realise that the British people have already spoken, and it is the duty of Government - and MPs like me - to implement that decision.
I hope last night's vote was another important step in the right direction.