HOW I VOTED TO KEEP NO DEAL ON THE TABLE

With the confusion over last might's votes and who was voting for what, I wanted to explain my actions, and importantly, the reasons for them.

To be absolutely clear, despite being a Remain campaigner, I am first and foremost a democrat. That is why I have repeatedly stated that I will support Brexit and it is why I have now twice supported the Government's proposed deal with the EU. Not perfect, but it at least allows us to move forward to the tricky process of developing a new future relationship with the EU. However, parliament has got itself completely bogged down with the process.

The only thing that is set in law is for us to have a no-deal Brexit on the 29th of this month. Having voted for the deal and lost on Tuesday, last night saw three votes - the government's proposal to rule out a no deal Brexit for one day only (on the 29th) thus sending a clear message that parliament wants a deal but from the 30th onwards and is prepared for a no deal Brexit. The second was to support the so-called Malthouse Compromise (which I supported along with a mixture of Brexiteers, but was lost) and the third was to rule out forever a no deal Brexit. This last option was taken first as an amendment to the government's 'one day only' no-deal proposal. I voted against it, but it was won (by 4 votes) and so became the substantive, amended government motion. As the substantive vote, the government lost by miles (I voted against it). So we now have a situation where we have no deal, and we have indicated that we will never leave without a deal. So cancelling Brexit is now more likely than ever.

This is not democratic. Brexit must be delivered and it must be delivered in a way that does not risk jobs across Wyre Forest. This can be achieved and I will continue to vote to deliver that through my support for the government's deal. But I can fully understand how people are desperately frustrated by this crazy process.

One thing that I would add is that I am receiving a lot of emails and texts from people asking me to double guess outcomes and commit to one line of action or another based on what might happen in two or three votes time. This is so complicated and so fluid that the only way to tackle this is to take each event as it is presented. One thing that is obvious about all this is that it is impossible to predict what is happening from one day to the next, let alone try to game plan for a few weeks in advance.