Commenting on suggestions that a new Conservative leader could just ignore Parliament and press on with a disastrous ‘no deal’ Brexit, Chris Bryant MP, leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said:
“It looks as if Parliament will be largely irrelevant during the forthcoming Conservative leadership contest, but any new Prime Minister will have to accept the political facts of life and be bound by the will of Parliament.
“The arithmetic in the Commons won't have changed so any campaign promises they make to their party will be worthless if they ignore the clear majority in Parliament against a disastrous no deal Brexit. And if they plough ahead regardless, they risk falling at the first hurdle, losing a vote of confidence or failing to get a Queen's Speech through.
“All the talk of suspending Parliament for months is daft. The last time an overmighty leader tried that was in the 17th century, and it led to Charles I losing his head.
“Even a cursory glance at history shows that whenever the executive takes on Parliament, Parliament emerges victorious.
“Whoever the new leader is, they would be better off building a consensus around putting Brexit back to the people than in trying to pick a constitutional fight they will not win. If they work for consensus, they will find many partners on all sides of the House. If they opt for confrontation, they will suffer Mrs May’s fate, but in a matter of months and weeks, not years.”