James Heappey Weekly Column

I'm afraid I've been unable to come to come to any concrete conclusions on the Prime Minister's revised Brexit offer. I still see that striking a deal gives us the best route out of the EU and the Prime Minister's original deal is still very much in the interests of businesses and hardworking residents across the Wells Constituency. If it were her deal again, I'd vote for it again.

Yet the PM has added to the deal things designed to broaden its appeal in Parliament ( I understand, of course, why that's necessary) but in so doing, she's probably made the deal even less likely to pass. Those calling for a second referendum want to vote for it in Parliament at a time of maximum advantage for them. They won't want to be bounced into it now. Meanwhile the offer of a choice on a future customs arrangement will be viewed with scepticism given the probability that the Prime Minister will make way for someone else sooner rather than later.

The PM has run out of road and her deal has too but I want Brexit delivered as quickly as possible so I need to work out what the fastest way forward is. If I think Parliament can come together and get this done before the summer, I'll vote for it. If I can't see that happening then I don't see how making the Brexit debate even more toxic helps whoever is our next Prime Minister in taking the process forward.

Over the next week or two I'll speak to colleagues on both sides of the House, listen to ideas on alternative ways to take this forward and, most importantly, I'll listen to my constituents too. The decision I must make on 7th June will be the biggest I've had to make in Parliament yet.