Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, challenged the Government in the House of Commons today on the future relationship between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom if no trade deal is agreed with the EU. Mr. Carmichael asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he had made on the impact of the Withdrawal Agreement on the Union.
Speaking in the House, Mr. Carmichael said:
“The chance of the Duchy of Lancaster tells us yesterday that we do not need a deal with the European Union. If he’s right, what will that mean for the future of Northern Ireland in the Union?”
Responding for the Government, Robin Walker MP said:
“I think the point that the Chancellor of is making is that we already have a deal with the European Union. We have left the European Union with a deal and I think that’s good news for Northern Ireland and the whole United Kingdom.”
Reacting afterwards, Mr. Carmichael said:
“The Minister’s response today merely served to highlight the complacency at the heart of Tory thinking on the future of the Union that is the United Kingdom. Michael Gove thinks we do not need a deal with the EU. If he gets his way then there will be a trade border down the Irish Sea and the ties that make up the Union will be loosened further. It begins to look like the Brexit nationalism of the Tories is at least as big a threat to the future of the UK as a unitary state as the Scottish nationalists.”