PMQs: PM was asked how she would vote in 2nd referendum..May had a brilliant response

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Posted on Oct 11 2017 - 8:26pm by admin

Mrs May was faced with a grilling by opposition MPs after she yesterday refused to tell LBC Radio whether she would vote for Brexit if a referendum was held tomorrow.

She told LBC radio: “I don’t answer hypothetical questions.”

Instead she defended her decision to vote remain at the time of the vote, but signalled things have changed.

Seizing on the opportunity during the House of Commons debate today, SNP’s leader in Westminster, Ian Blackford, said: “If there was another EU referendum now I know how I would vote to remain. Why hasn’t the Prime Minister been straightforward about how she would vote?”

Mrs May fired back: “Let’s be clear – there is no second referendum.

“The people of the United Kingdom voted and we will be leaving the EU in March 2019.”

Parliament erupted with cheers and jeers with one MP shouting: “You might want one, we don’t.”

Mr Blackford tried to continue the attack, adding: “The Prime Minister can’t answer a simple question because she’s hamstrung by the parliamentary majority and a divided party of right wing Brexiteers.”

He went on to say the Scottish economy was at risk of losing 80,000 jobs and £2,000 per person if Britain left the single market and customs union.

But Mrs May said: “Now is the time for the SNP leadership to recognise that to save jobs in Scotland they need Scotland to remain part of the UK.”

PMQs live from 12pm below:

The session started with questions about mental health as it was Mental Health Awareness Day yesterday.

Mrs May was urged to stop NHS cuts to improve mental health funding.

The PM said the Government is putting more money into mental health and more NHS patients have access, however she said more needs to be done.

She said teachers in schools are also being trained.

Onto trade – Mrs May was asked if she would issue a white paper on the future of trade in services.

The PM said during the Brexit implementation period they will continue to concentrate on trade.

Theresa MayPA•SKYNEWS

Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn are facing each other during PMQs

Mr Corbyn starts on Universal Credit and says does the PM accept it would be “irresponsible” to carry on regardless.

Mrs May said: “I think perhaps it’s recognising why we brought UC into place. We want a welfare system which helps get people into the work place, helps them provide for their families.

“The system we inherited from Labour did not do that.

“For too many people, under Labour, they were better off on benefits.

“We want to make sure work always pays.”

Mr Corbyn criticised the policy, saying it is not working.

However, Mrs May said there was a shaky start but more and more people are getting payments on time.

She said: “Of course we recognise there have been issues to address in the rolling out. 

“That is why we have been taking our time in doing it.

“The decision is still the right one.

“There is the possibility in place for this people who are not in a position to wait for their first payment they can ask for an advance and the number of people getting an advance has increased.”

Heidi AllenGetty

Heidi Allen

Mr Corbyn said it is leaving people in debt and forcing them out of their homes.

The PM said in the first few months, a third fewer people were in rent arrears after being on Universal Credit.

She said more people are getting into work and those who cannot wait for their first payment can ask for an advance.

Mr Corbyn said it’s going to put another 200,000 children into poverty.

The Labour leader said 12 Tory MPs wrote to the DWP to ask for Universal Credit to be paused.

He quotes Georgina who said her family was left without any money because of Universal Credit.

Mr Corbyn says many people are being forced out of their homes and driven into poverty.

He goes onto the Universal Credit helpline, saying it costs 50p a minute and asks for Mrs May to show some “humanity” and intervene today to make the helpline free.

Mrs May said her Government is working on smoothing out the issues – but she avoids the helpline question.

Mr Corbyn calls for Mrs May to go as he claims she “cannot lead”.

Mrs May hits back, saying Shelter and Brighton Council accused the Labour Party of being anti-Semitic.

She said: “First of all Shelter said the party’s housing policy would end up harming people on low incomes.

“Labour’s flagship Haringey Council rejected another housing policy.

“And the labour leader of Brighton threatened to ban conferences because of freely expressed anti-semitism.

“And that was before the shadow chancellor admitted a Labour government would bring a run on the pound!”

Tory MP Heidi Allen brings it back to Universal Credit, asking the PM to meet with her to discuss reducing the six week wait for Universal Credit.

Mrs May said the DWP is continuing to look into it and will meet with her.

Ian Blackford, SNP MP, asks Mrs May how she would vote if there was another EU Referendum – she says there is not one.

She retorted: “There is no second referendum. The UK voted and we will be leaving the EU in March 2019.”

Mark Menzies asks about BAE Systems, where 2,000 jobs were cut yesterday, he asks for support for the workers.

The Tory leader said it’s a “very worrying time” and she reassures him the DWP will support workers and the Government will continue to support the defence industry.

Mrs May is asked about a Brexit no deal and if she can reassure EU residents what their rights will be in that case.

If there’s a no deal then we will have to have arrangements with other member states about not just EU citizens, but UK citizens in their states.

We’re very close to an agreement on EU citizens.

Iain Duncan Smith asks if money will be allocated to every Brexit eventuality.

She said the Treasury has committed £250m to departments, sometimes you need to spend money before, and the Treasury will write to the departments explaining.

Mrs May added: “Where money needs to be spent, it will be spent.”

Labour MP Heidi Alexander accuses Mrs May of being “afraid of the most right-wing, rabied elements of her party” which has led to her talking about a no deal Brexit outcome.

The PM, said: “We are not ramping up a no deal scenario, we’re actively working with negotiations with the EU to get the right deal for the UK.

“It’s what I set out in my Florence speech.

“I made very clear, when we leave the EU in March 2019 we will cease to be full members of the single market and customs union, because you cannot be full members without accepting all four pillars of the EU, including freedom of movement.

“During the implementation period we will be looking for an agreement.

“But that will not be the same thing as full membership.”

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Mrs May was attacked for Universal Credit

Labour’s Vicky Foxtrot said a woman fleeing domestic abuse came to her last week and between them they could not find a womens’ shelter which would take her.

Mrs May said she does not want to see any domestic violence in the country and the Conservatives have increased spending on preventing it.

Onto Free Schools – Mrs May said free schools are providing parents with opportunities they did not have before, including autism focused schools.

Mrs May says she welcomes the proliferation of free schools, adding they have contributed a great deal to education. 

But she added “they have done more than that”, explaining that in her constituency there is a free school for children with autism. 

And that was not available before, she says.

Onto the Shadow Chancellor saying there would be a run on the pound if Labour won.

Mrs May says a run on the pound would mean “higher prices, job losses, businesses leaving the country, people would be poorer”.

She said: “The one thing we absolutely must do is make sure the shadow chancellor never ends up in the Treasury.

“The opposition leader asked me what planet I’m on, well we all know what planet he and the shadow chancellor are on – it’s planet Venezuela.”

Tory Peter Bone asks if there can be a promise negotiations will be finished by the end of the two year transition period over Brexit.

She said she wants to have the negotiations finished by then, with an agreement on future trade relationships by March 2019.

Finally, Mrs May is asked about the Labour-run NHS in Wales, with people living in Wales see they are getting less good services.

She said people will travel to England to get the services available in England which are not available in Wales.

And the Labour government in Wales needs to take a hard look at what they are doing, she added.

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