The historic debate titled ‘Brexit and Prorogation of the UK Parliament’ saw members debate views on the political and moral breakdown of the Westminster Parliament as well as a Welsh National Constitutional Convention to look at future Welsh sovereignty.
The main motion by Rebecca Evans (Welsh Labour, Gower) and Rhun ap Iorweth (Plaid Cymru, Ynys Môn) was agreed. This stated that the proroguing of the Westminster Parliament was a disgrace, that the United Kingdom should in no circumstances leave the EU on a no deal basis; and that neither the 2016 referendum nor the 2017 General Election provide a mandate for a no deal Brexit.
The motion further called on MP’s to use all their means to prevent the UK Government from pursuing a no deal Brexit and to also ensure that the decision on whether or not to leave the EU should go back to the electorate in a second .referendum
None of the ammendments to the main motion were agreed including an ammendment by two members for the establishment of a Welsh constitutional convention to map out what a future independent Wales would look like.
Here are some stand out quotes from the session:
“So, why will you not support a general election so that the people can have their say?” – Andrew R.T. Davies of the Welsh Conservatives to Lynne Neagle of Welsh Labour.
“We still haven’t met the current Boris government..” – Mark Drakeford, Welsh Labour and First Minister, speaking to the chamber.
“Today’s debate is nothing more than a great display of political immaturity” – Paul Davies talking about the debate and the current attempts to stop Brexit, emphasising the need for a general election.
“Wales can do better. We cannot rely on Westminster, so we must start preparing to stand on our own two feet, and we need to take control of Wales.” – Neil McEvoy, Independent, speaking to the chamber.
“It’s not a dictatorship to put the vote to the people, it’s called democracy” – Andrew R.T. Davies of the Welsh Conservatives, speaking to the chamber.
“Nobody voted for a no deal Brexit in 2016” – Joyce Watson, Welsh Labour, speaking to the chamber.
“I believe that the day is coming, and soon, when we will need to leave Westminster behind. But the sunlit glade that will get us out of that forest is wide open ahead of us, and that is an independent Wales.” – Delyth Jewell, Plaid Cymru, speaking to the chamber.
“There is no reason not to do this (start a Welsh constitutional convention) , save an ideological attachment to a union that is dying in front of our eyes.” – Delyth Jewell, Plaid Cymru, speaking to the chamber.
“It’s no time to drive the liberals out of the Conservative Party.” – David Melding, of the Welsh Conservatives, speaking to the chamber.
“This is a message that totally ignores the will of the people of Wales as expressed on 23 June 2016.” – David Rowlands of the Brexit party speaking of those trying to thwart Brexit.
“I’ve always supported independence, not as an end in itself, but as a means to forge a new future and to set a new direction for Wales, and it’s time we had that discussion through a national constitutional convention.” – Rhun ap Iorwerth, Plaid Cymru, speaking to the chamber.
“The plain fact of the matter is that 53 per cent of the people of Wales voted to leave the European Union without qualification in 2016” – Neil Hamilton, UKIP Wales.
“It’s time to rebuild afresh.” – Rhun ap Iorwerth, Plaid Cymru, speaking to the chamber.
At least one Assembly member spent the whole historic session scrawling through online sites. 14 AM’s failed to show up to the debate.
The full session can be seen on Senedd TV here