The Prime Minister addressed Britain following yet another tumultuous day in Westminster, telling the public: “It is high time we made a decision”.
PM May took to the podium in Downing Street, telling Britons that the requested Article 50 extension was a matter of “deep, personal regret”, but insisted the indecision in the Commons left her was to blame.
“Of this, I’m absolutely sure: you the public have had enough.
“You’re tired of the infighting. You’re tired of the political games and the arcane procedural rows. Tired of MPs talking of nothing else but Brexit.”
“I agree”, she continued, “I’m on your side”.
Mrs May explained that the extension would allow MPs the time for “one final choice”.
“Do they want to leave the EU with a deal which delivers on the result of the referendum, that takes back control of our money, borders and laws, while protecting jobs and our national security?
“Do they want to leave without a deal, or do they not want to leave at all? Causing potentially irreparable damage to public trust, not just in this generation of politicians, but to our entire democratic process.
“It is high time we made a decision.”
She went on: “So far, Parliament has done everything possible to avoid making a choice.
“Motion after motion, and amendment after amendment has been tabled without Parliament ever deciding what it wants.
“All MPs have been willing to say is what it doesn’t want.”
“I passionately hope MPs will find a way to back the deal I’ve negotiated with the EU […] the very best deal negotiable.”
This morning the Prime Minister sent a letter to the president of the European Council Donald Tusk.
Within that letter she outlined that she wished to extend Article 50 until June 30, with the intention of getting her agreed withdrawal agreement through the Commons in the meantime.
This despite the deal already being rejected twice by MPs, and Speaker John Bercow saying unless there were substantial changes to the agreement he would not allow a third vote.
Mr Tusk held a press conference in Brussels this afternoon saying he believed a short extension to Article 50 would be “possible”, subject to the withdrawal agreement being passed through Parliament.
Mrs May faced onslaught from MPs of all parties throughout the day, however her most harsh critics were from her own benches.
At PMQs Tory backbencher Peter Bone MP told the Prime Minister: “If you continue to ask for a delay to Article 50 you will betray the British people […] It is entirely down to you. History will judge you at this moment.”
As an emergency Brexit debate granted by the Speaker got underway, another Conservative MP got up to offer Mrs May some harsh words.
Former attorney general Dominic Grieve told the PM: “My Right Honourable Friend the Prime Minister came to the dispatch box today at Prime Minister’s Questions”, he began.
“I confess, I think it was the worst moment I have experienced since I came into the House of Commons.
“I have never been more ashamed to be a member of the Conservative party, or to be asked to lend her support.”
Watch Mr Grieve’s comments to the Commons below: