Two Sheffield MPs have voted against a bill to trigger Article 50 by March 2017.
Sheffield Hallam MP Nick Clegg and Penistone and Stocksbridge MP Angela Smith voted No, despite Sheffield voting 51-49 to leave the EU in the June referendum. Sheffield’s four other MPs supported the motion.
Speaking exclusively to JUS News, Ms Smith said: “The motion wasn’t about Brexit – it was about the government’s timetable for parliamentary scrutiny of it’s approach to Brexit and I think many of us felt that the timetable was unrealistic.”
Explaining why she was in the minority of Labour MPs on this vote, she spoke out against the “unhelpful rhetoric from Brexiteers” that has caused MPs to be hesitant to criticise the government for fear that they will be seen to be going against the electorate.
Successor to Nick Clegg as leader of the Liberal Democrats, Tim Farron MP said: “Labour and the Tories are holding hands towards a hard Brexit. There should be democracy throughout this process, not a parliamentary stitch-up that denies the public a say over the final deal.
“It’s clear that only the Liberal Democrats are providing a real opposition to the Conservative Brexit government and striving to keep Britain open, tolerant and united.”
Constituents have reacted on Twitter, with some condemning their actions:
— Kashmire D.S Hawker (@KDSHawker) December 7, 2016
@angelasmithmp Have voted Labour all my life. Would like to know what sort of Brexit you would endorse. Cld not vote for committed Remainer
— John Broom (@barnsleyrunner) December 8, 2016
However, some on Twitter said they supported the actions of their MPs:
— Andy (@Ajouk) December 8, 2016
— Colin Muncie (@ColinM1956) December 8, 2016