Tom comments on the coming election

So next month we have a General Election on our hands and the people of Ipswich will have the opportunity to elect their Member of Parliament.

All General Elections are important, but my view is that this one is the most important in my life time. So much is on the line, not just Brexit. But on the topic of Brexit, let me just say this, whether you voted leave or remain, over three years ago a democratic process took place and as a country we voted to leave the EU and if I’m elected as the Member of Parliament for Ipswich, I will do everything I can to ensure the result is respected and that Brexit is delivered this side of Christmas.

It’s for this reason that I have signed the #StandUp4Brexit pledge. This makes it very clear what my behaviour on Brexit would be if I was elected as the Member of Parliament for Ipswich. If elected I pledge to back the Boris’ Brexit deal to leave the Customs Union, the Single Market and the European Court of Justice. However, if for whatever reason the deal isn’t passed by 31st January then under those circumstances, I would support no deal.

My experience of knocking on doors over the past few months is that the vast majority of Ipswich residents want Brexit to be delivered and for us to move on as a country. They do not want the second referendum that Labour have promised and that the current Labour MP for Ipswich is campaigning for. They see this as only leading to more delay and division. I believe that the majority of people feel this way for two principal reasons, firstly, they’re democrats. Regardless of how they voted they believe that a democratic process took place and that is should be respected. Secondly, again, regardless of how they personally voted in the referendum they want Parliament to break free from the Brexit impasse it’s been stuck in for the last few months in order to allow the country to move forward.

If Boris secures a majority, he has made clear that he would look to get Brexit done before Christmas. The Brexit deal has already been negotiated and is good to go. As someone who voted to leave the EU, I am happy with the deal. This Brexit deal ends freedom of movement, it enables Britain to negotiate its own trade agreements and ends the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice. It also ends the annualised payments we’ve been having to pay into the EU since we’ve been a member. For me this deal avoids any of the disruption that could have been associated with a no deal Brexit whilst also ensuring that we have the freedoms we need to make a success of Brexit.

Wouldn’t it be great if going into the New Year we could look forward to a year not completely dominated by Brexit? My strong view is that it’s only by voting Conservative that we can help ensure this is the case and that we can move things forward.

If Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party win the election, they’ve committed to renegotiating a completely new Brexit deal with the EU. This process itself could take many more months. Once it's secured its new deal, Labour would then trigger a second referendum that would take many more months. Your guess is as good as mine as to how Labour would campaign in the that referendum. All I know for secure is it means the best part of a year of further delay and uncertainty. Jeremy Corbyn has promised to get Brexit done within 6 months if he gets elected! We don’t need it done in 6 months we need it done now.

Boris Johnson’s determination to get Brexit done this side of Christmas could well disrupt my Christmas holiday plans if I’m lucky enough to win the privilege of being elected as the Member of Parliament for Ipswich. However, at this moment in time, nothing would give me greater satisfaction by being sent by the people of Ipswich to Westminster to get Brexit done before tucking into my Christmas turkey.