The heated debate was sparked when the Sky News reporter demanded to know why the Brexiteer will not back Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal amid the increased chance of an even softer Brexit. Mr Francois fired back and said: “Because it means we don’t leave the European Union.” In response, the Sky News host claimed Britain is “not leaving anyway”, adding: “They have just voted that you are not leaving. You are having an extension and you have got a no deal off the table.”
Mr Francois replied: “With respect, that is not what they voted for. By four voted. Four.”
But as he attempted to continue the TV host said: “Yes, but it still passed.”
The Tory Brexiteer blasted: “Hang on. They voted that we wouldn’t leave on the 29th March – that we wouldn’t leave without no deal. That’s one thing. You are mixing up a lot of things here, if I may say so.
“With regards to the withdrawal agreement, whatever people think of Members of Parliament, and I’m under no illusions about that, they can read.
“And we have read the withdrawal agreement and we know that means we don’t leave the EU.
“So, if we are given two choices which is stay in the European Union and vote for the Withdrawal Agreement and stay in the European Union.
“We are not going to vote for the withdrawal agreement with it keeps us in the EU. We are just not going to do it.”
Rigby claimed Brexiteers’ options are now “narrowing”. She added: “I just don’t understand why you don’t just take her deal and bank the win.”
Mr Francois fired back: “I think I have tried to explain it. Because it is not a win, it’s a lose. I am not going to bank a lose. I was in the army, I wasn’t trained to lose.”
In a surprise move, the Commons voted 312 to 308 –- a majority of four – in favour of an amendment tabled by Tory former cabinet minister Dame Caroline Spelman.
The amendment, which is not legally binding, was added to a Government motion put forward by the Prime Minister which would have rejected no deal on March 29 but left it on the table for other times.
Mrs May initially gave her party a free vote on the Government motion.
But in a surprise turn of events, after the Spelman amendment won by a wafer-thin majority, Tories were ordered to oppose it and Mrs May voted against her own motion.
However, a number of Tory rebels teamed up with Labour and it was passed by 321 votes to 278.
Speaking afterward, Mrs May said: “The House has today provided a clear majority against leaving without a deal, however, I will repeat what I said before.
“These are about the choices this House faces. The legal default in EU and UK law is that the UK will leave without a deal unless something else is agreed. The onus is now on every one of us in this House to find out what that is.
“The options before us are the same as they always have been.”
The Prime Minister has also proposed the prospect of a third “meaningful vote” on her EU Withdrawal Agreement within the next week.
A Government motion for debate in the House of Commons tomorrow offers to seek a one-off extension delaying Brexit to June 30 if MPs approve the deal negotiated with the EU by next Wednesday.
But the Prime Minister warned if the deal – which has already been twice rejected by massive majorities – is not approved, a longer extension will be needed, requiring Britain to take part in the European Parliament elections in May.
She said: “I do not think that would be the right outcome but the House needs to face up to the consequences of the decisions it has taken.”