Andrea Leadsom warns peers over Brexit Bill defeats

Minister tears into unelected peers for trying to ‘undermine the will’ of voters after Lords inflicts 14 defeats on EU Withdrawal Bill to water down Brexit

  • Andrea Leadsom said it is not the job of Lords to overturn will of MPs and voters 
  • Remarks comes after peers inflicted 14 defeats on the Government’s  Brexit Bill 
  • Tory MPs called for reform of the House of Lords  in the wake of the rebellions

Unelected peers should not ‘undermine the will’ of the people who voted for Brexit, a Cabinet minister today said.

The House of Lords has inflicted 14 defeats on the EU Withdrawal Bill in an effort to  water down Brexit.

Leading Tory MPs have called for the House of Lords to be reformed in the wake of their Brexit rebellion.

And today Cabinet minister Andrea Leadsom warned peers it is not their job to undermine the work of the elected House of Commons and will of voters.

Cabinet minister Andrea Leadsom (pictured in the Commons today) warned peers it is not their job to undermine the work of the elected House of Commons and will of voters

Mrs Leadsom, leader of the Commons, told MPs: ‘There is concern…..  

Lords defeats: What happens next?  

The dozen defeats inflicted by peers on the Brexit bill must all be considered by MPs before they are law.

The Lords amendments will be sent to the Commons to be considered in the coming weeks and ministers are expected to order MPs to delete all of them.

Cancelled amendments will then be sent back to the Lords in a process known as ‘parliamentary ping pong’ – but peers are not allowed to just vote them through again unchanged. 

If Rebel Tories join forces with the Opposition to successfully defend any of the Lords amendments, ministers will have to accept them. 

‘What I would say is that what the purpose of the House of Lords isn’t to do is to undermine the will of this House and, very importantly, is not to undermine the will of the majority of people in this country who voted for the United Kingdom to leave the EU.’

the remarks come after leading Tory MPs said the House of Lords in the wake of their Brexit rebellions. 

Iain Duncan Smith, ex leader of the Conservative party, warned there had to be a ‘reckoning’ and a ‘complete and total overhaul’ of the Lords.    

Tory MP Daniel Kawczynski said abolition of the House of Lords should be in his party’s next election manifesto.

‘These unelected Lords, some of whom are still there despite being bankrupt or going to jail, are completely out of control,’ he said. 

‘The time has come to have a root-and-branch reform. These people are now hurting the UK’s negotiating position with Brussels, which is unforgivable.’

Mr Kawczynski said peers had been deliberately trying to overturn the result of the European referendum of June 2016.

Tory peer the Duke of Wellington led a cross-party move to delete the exit date, March 29 2019, from the Bill to give ministers greater flexibility

Mr Duncan Smith, who led the Tories from 2001 to 2003, said: ‘After this is all over, there will have to be a reckoning, a complete and total overhaul of the House of Lords. 

‘That reckoning I’m afraid is one they have brought on themselves. I have believed in reforming the upper chamber for years. 

‘Their behaviour on this bill, to defeat the Government 14 times is to almost rewrite it. 

‘It is unprecedented and displays the enormous arrogance of some of them.’



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