Claire Wright responds to Sir Hugo Swire’s ‘political games’ claim over Brexit

Claire Wright is standing for elections in the Otter Valley.

Claire Wright is standing for elections in the Otter Valley. - Credit: Archant

Claire Wright says she still supports a second EU referendum after East Devon MP Sir Hugo Swire claimed she and other ‘remainers’ had changed their minds

Claire Wright has responded to claims she and other ‘remainers’ were seeking to ‘play political games’ in the Brexit debate.

In his column, East Devon MP Sir Hugo Swire claimed those who supported staying in the European Union changed from campaigning for a ‘people’s vote’ to now calling for Article 50 to be revoked.

In response, Ms Wright says she is still in support of a second EU referendum and Sir Hugo should focus on local issues rather than ‘picking a fight’ with her.

She said: “Sir Hugo Swire has misrepresented my position on Brexit in his column of last week.

“My position has not changed. I still support a second referendum on the basis that now that we are far more aware of the true impact of Brexit, the people should be given the opportunity to have a say – that is democracy.

“It also appears to be the only way to address the total impasse in Parliament in what must be one of the most shambolic periods of government in British political history.

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“I supported revoking Article 50 only when it appeared that a disastrous ‘no deal’ Brexit was the likely outcome.

“I have explained this twice to Sir Hugo via Twitter following his questions, but he seems not to understand.

“Among many other things, a ‘no deal’ Brexit, still supported by Sir Hugo, would bring an immediate end to all our trade agreements, lead to food and medicine shortages and a sharp rise in prices.

“It is a very great shame that the Conservative government’s obsession with leaving the EU has eclipsed every other issue.

“What Sir Hugo should actually be concerned with, is how and why a local school – Exmouth Community College – has been forced to ask parents for money to help them manage, as his government continues to starve our schools of resources.

“He should be worried about why it is now regularly taking four hours for ambulances to reach elderly people who have fallen and broken their hips, why hospital waiting times for operations continue to grow, why hospital beds are still being cut and why East Devon’s hospital buildings are still at risk from being sold off.

“And Sir Hugo should be asking why his government is not only failing its climate change targets but has scrapped green housing-building initiatives, incentives to buy less polluting cars, why it is investing in roads rather than rail (apart from the massively damaging HS2) and why it has introduced the horribly environmentally destructive practice of fracking.

“While Sir Hugo obsesses over Brexit, which new Tory party leader to align himself with and picks fights with me, Rome burns.

“And with it, so do our precious public services and planet.”