The referendum on whether to leave the EU in 2016 was one of the most divisive national political moments of the past century. And two years on from that vote, the divisions in our country are not being healed. Indeed, they are being exacerbated by a government that has refused to reach out and hear the concerns of those who voted remain.
So this morning in Parliament I asked the Secretary of State to cut down on all the fighting talk and start reaching out across Parliament and across the country.
I believe that when a referendum delivers such a narrow result, it is all the more important to acknowledge and to deal with the concerns of those that were on the losing side. Yet the government has played politics with people’s lives from issues ranging to residency rights after Brexit, whether tariffs will be placed on goods and services, to say nothing of their callous treatment of the question of the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
A responsible government would have listened to the concerns of those of us who voted remain. Instead, they have doubled down on a political strategy that has sought only to divide further an already-divided nation.
They ought to be ashamed.