Theresa May should flood the House of Lords with 800 new pro-Brexit peers if it attempts to stop the UK leaving the EU, Ukip MP Douglas Carswell has said.
The Ukip MP said parliament should not try to “subvert the will of the people” by opposing the triggering of Article 50, after the Supreme Court ruled the prime minister had to put it to a vote.
“All the lawyers in London are not going not be able to stop us leaving the EU,” Carswell told Sky News. “The way ahead is pretty straightforward for Theresa May to enact the will of the people.
“We need two votes. One in the House of Commons, one in the House of Lords. I would suggest if either of those chambers attempts to veto the will of the people, well we can replace the Commons with a general election and we could replace the Lords by creating 800 new peers.”
Responding to Carswell, Labour’s leader in the Lords, Baroness Smith of Basildon said: “It’s bewildering why those who are the most supportive of Brexit continue to make such ridiculous statements even after we’ve been so clear time and time again that we will not sabotage, block or frustrate Article 50 as the start of the process. It’s almost as if in this ‘post-truth’ era, that they’re trying to goad us into doing so.”
May has said she wants to trigger Article 50 - the formal process of leaving the EU - by the end of March.
Although is highly unlikely to lose the vote, as Jeremy Corbyn has said Labour will not block Brexit, the progress of the legislation through Parliament could be frustrated.
Dozens of Labour MPs are also reportedly preparing to vote against the process being launched.
And Labour has said it will table amendments demanding an early “meaningful” vote on the divorce settlement agreed between the UK and EU leaders.
The SNP has said its 54 MPs will vote against the plans if they reach the Commons.
The Lib Dems will oppose the move unless the PM promises a second referendum.
Lib Dem peer Lord Newby said his party would attempt to amend the legislation needed to invoke Article 50 to insert a provision that would give the public another vote on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations.