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Lord Heseltine Sacked As Government Adviser After House Of Lords Brexit Defiance

'Tarzan' told to go.

07/03/2017 23:23 | Updated 08 March 2017
PA
Lord Heseltine: "It’s the duty of Parliament to assert its sovereignty in determining the legacy we leave to new generations of young people."

Conservative former Cabinet minister Lord Heseltine has been sacked as a Government adviser after rebelling over Brexit.

The ex-deputy Prime Minister was among 13 Conservative peers who voted to give Parliament final approval on the deal the UK secures when quitting the European Union.

It represented Theresa May’s second defeat in the House of Lords over Brexit.

He told the Press Association:

“I have just been told by the Chief Whip in the Lords that No 10 is to sack me from the five jobs with which I have been helping the Government following my vote in the House of Lords earlier today.

“However, in the last resort, I believe, as I said in the House of Lords, the future of this country is inextricably interwoven with our European friends.

“It’s the duty of Parliament to assert its sovereignty in determining the legacy we leave to new generations of young people.”

During the debate, Lord Heseltine said Parliament should be “the ultimate custodian of our national sovereignty”, suggesting MPs should get a veto on Brexit. He said: 

“I do not accept that the mandate for Brexit runs for all time and in all circumstances.

“The 48 per cent have the same right to be heard as those who voted for Brexit.”

The peer was asked to help the Government with plans to restore deprived estates under David Cameron and he also worked with George Osborne on plans for east London.

He advised on plans for a Swansea city deal and has been working with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Lord Heseltine was one of 366 peers who inflicted a second defeat on the Government’s Brexit Bill.

After three hours of heated exchanges, the House of Lords backed amending the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill by a majority of 98.

Brexit Secretary David Davis accused peers of trying to “frustrate” Britain’s exit from the European Union and insisted the Government intends to overturn the result.

He said: “It is disappointing that the House of Lords has chosen to make further changes to a Bill that the Commons passed without amendment.

“It has a straightforward purpose – to enact the referendum result and allow the Government to get on with negotiating a new partnership with the EU.

“It is clear that some in the Lords would seek to frustrate that process, and it is the Government’s intention to ensure that does not happen. We will now aim to overturn these amendments in the House of Commons.”

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