TWO of Barnsley’s MPs sided with the government and backed the Brexit bill this week - but all four voted against rushing it through the House of Commons in three days.

Both MP for Barnsley Central Dan Jarvis and Barnsley East Stephanie Peacock voted for the withdrawal agreement bill, but voted against the proposed timetable which resulted in a blow for Boris Johnson in trying to secure Brexit by Halloween on Thursday.

Mr Jarvis said: “This week I voted for the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill. I did so because I believe Parliament should be given the opportunity to scrutinise this vitally important piece of legislation.

“I voted against the government’s attempt to fast-track it through Parliament with minimal scrutiny. The government should now bring forward an appropriate timetable for the bill and allow MPs the chance to examine it in greater detail. I will use the coming weeks to improve the bill where possible, such as considering amendments on workers’ rights, environmental standards and consumer protections. I was re-elected on a manifesto commitment to respect the 2016 EU referendum result and have taken exceptional and unprecedented steps to ensure Barnsley and South Yorkshire is in the strongest possible position to thrive, whatever Brexit may bring.”

Stephanie Peacock said she had always supported leaving, but with a sensible deal rather than a ‘disastrous no-deal’.

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“That is why I voted for the government’s EU Withdrawal Bill,” she said.

She said the bill allows the possibility of leaving with a decent deal, but falls ‘seriously short’ on key points and also vowed to work to amend the bill to protect workers, consumers and the environment.

“The opportunity to make amendments is only available after the bill’s second reading, so I voted for the bill in order that the Commons has the chance to amend and improve it at the committee stage. This is the government’s chance to compromise, improve their bill, and produce a deal that works for people in Barnsley and has the support of Parliament. If they do so, I will be prepared to vote for the bill at its later stages. If the bill remains as it is, however, I will vote against it.

“I hope that both Parliament and government now take this opportunity.”

MP for Wentworth and Dearne, John Healey and MP for Penistone and Stocksbridge Angela Smith both voted against the bill and the timetable to fast-track it.

Ms Smith said: “This deal negotiated by Boris is even worse than the one negotiated by his predecessor, and in my view would be bad for our economy, bad for our public services, and bad for our environment and I could not support something that would make everyone in Penistone and Stocksbridge poorer.

“I am still of the firm opinion that once Parliament has agreed to the provisions in this bill, the public must have their say in a confirmatory, final say referendum with an option to remain members of the European Union now we all know what Brexit actually means.”

Mr Healey said: “I understand how much people want a resolution to Brexit. We all want to move on and fix the big challenges facing areas like ours from the NHS to schools to wages.

“But the Brexit terms set our relations with Europe for a generation. I didn’t vote for Boris Johnson’s deal because it’s a bad deal. It sells out British workplace rights and jobs, and the NHS. I’ll continue to make the case for Labour’s better Brexit deal with a relationship with Europe that protects British jobs and rights.”