A prominent Remainer has called out Eastbourne MP for ‘refusing’ to debate him about Brexit.
Around 200 people are said to have attended the event hosted by Lord Andrew Adonis at the Mansion Lions Hotel on Saturday (December 1).
The Labour politian said there was ‘overwhelming support’ for a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal in Eastbourne and criticised Stephen Lloyd MP’s no-show as a sign he was ‘unwilling to engage with his consituents’.
He said at the event, “I’m sure Eastbourne will vote to stay in the EU in the People’s Vote next year, particularly the town’s young people who don’t want their futures trashed.
“Indeed, I find it shocking that Eastbourne has a Lib Dem MP who is proposing to vote for Theresa May’s £39bn load of junk and against a People’s Vote, and who has refused to debate this momentous decision with his constituents here tonight.”
Lord Adonis said Theresa May’s Brexit deal will be ‘dead in 10 days, possibly sooner’ and said the Prime Minister may ‘suffer the biggest rejection by Parliament of any Prime Minister in the entire history of Parliament since the revolution of 1688’.
He said he hopes for a General Election and a People’s Vote in May, where 16 and 17-year-olds would have the opportunity to vote on their future.
“Things are changing fast. I am now certain that we will get a People’s Vote, and I strongly believe that we can win it,” he said.
Mr Lloyd’s team has shared with this newspaper his reasons for not attending this event, which were sent in an email to the organisers.
He wrote, “Although I respect his vehemently held views around Brexit, I do not see much point in debating them with him. This is for two reasons:
“Firstly, as someone who advocated Remaining in the EU during the referendum, a view I still hold, I’d likely be agreeing with him throughout which would be rather boring for your audience.
“Secondly, as both you and he know, I made a promise to Eastbourne during both the referendum and the snap general election, that I would respect the result, accept the withdrawal deal brought back by the PM and would not support calls for a second referendum.
“Lord Adonis’s many proclamations and tweets toward me since then have been both indignant and amazed that I am keeping my promise. And in the process elicited thousands of pretty abusive tweets toward me from his many followers. Most of the view that I am a fraud and/or a charlatan for keeping my promise.
“This has been somewhat dispiriting, but I appreciate he is entitled to be amazed that I am keeping my promise – even if, I suspect, most folk in Eastbourne won’t be, whatever their views on the issue.
“Consequently, me simply reiterating my promise throughout the evening, as he deplores my numerous failings for doing so, would be simply masochistic behaviour on my part. Not a condition I suffer from!
“Thank you though for the invite, please do give my best to Lord Adonis and offer him a warm welcome to Eastbourne. I hope you have a good event, however, I respectfully decline your invitation.”