Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove addressed the House of Commons on 3rd September 2019.
Thank you very much Mr Speaker. This is the first time that I have appeared at the dispatch box since I moved on from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the superb team of civil servants at that department who do so much to improve the lives of so many across this country, and with your permission, I will make a statement about preparations for our departure from the European Union.
More than three years ago, in the biggest exercise in democracy in our country’s history, the British people voted to leave the EU. But so far this Parliament has failed to honour that instruction. Now our Prime Minister has made clear that we must leave by October 31st. And so we must. Trust in this House depends on it. Trust in our democracy depends on it.
Of course, this Government is determined to secure our departure with a good deal, one that paves the way for a bright future outside the single market and the customs union. And the response the Prime Minister has received from European leaders shows they are ready to move. They want a deal too. And they are moving because the Prime Minister has been clear that matters must be resolved by October 31, if we drift, then the incentive on them to deliver quickly will dissipate. So I hope my colleagues in the House of Commons will give the Prime Minister the time and space he needs to pursue the opening he has secured and get a deal we can all support.
But of course we must be prepared for every eventuality.