Scottish Labour MP resigns from frontbench to back Brexit rebellion

Jun 22, 2018, 12:30
Scottish Labour MP resigns from frontbench to back Brexit rebellion

"The government can not demonstrate the flexibility necessary for a successful deal if its hands are tied midway through that process", Davis said.

The Government is expected to table a compromise amendment on Thursday to her flagship EU Withdrawal Bill, setting out in more detail the terms of the "meaningful vote" promised to MPs on the final Brexit deal.

The concession on a meaningful vote came after intensive horse-trading on the floor of the House of Commons, with chief whip Julian Smith shuttling between Tory backbenchers during debate on Lords amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill.

And around 15-20 pro-EU Tories are understood to have received assurances in a face-to-face discussion with the Prime Minister in her Commons office ahead of the vote. He said he would vote against the prime minister.

The Prime Minister and Brexit Secretary have appealed to rebel backbench MPs to vote with the government on the EU Withdrawal Bill to avoid the risk of undermining negotiations.

With only 10 months left before Britain is due to leave, her government is under pressure from European Union negotiators, businesses wanting clarity, and from many in the country to start taking decisions on its preferred future trading ties. It will be debated on Tuesday.

One former minister who was present at Tuesday's meeting with Mrs May, Stephen Hammond, said he "trusts entirely" the promises made by the PM.

In such an event, he said Parliament should be able to flex its muscles by requiring ministers to come forward with a plan of action, which MPs would be able to debate and vote on.

Party officials have been frantically lobbying to convince lawmakers who have threatened to vote against the government to stay in line, using arguments ranging from the threat of being turfed out by a government led by opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to losing leverage in Brexit talks with the EU.

But with only 10 months left before Britain is due to leave, her government is under pressure from European Union negotiators, businesses wanting clarity, and from many in the country to start taking decisions on its preferred future trading ties.

May set the tone for a tense two days as she warned Tory Remainers that if they defied her and backed Lords amendments to the landmark Brexit legislation it would weaken Britain's hand at the negotiating table.

Morgan said if a compromise amendment did not emerge, rebels could work with the Lords to ensure the changes took place.

In the tense atmosphere where it was not clear which way the vote would go, the government secured its victory only after offering concessions to one of the leaders of a group of Conservative lawmakers who were threatening to vote against May.

Mrs May was responding to a question from Conservative arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg, who said it was vital that any amendment preserved the separation between the roles of Government and Parliament.

Meanwhile, the meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jon Un features on the front of The Times, which reports on the U.S. president's prediction that it could "work out very nicely" for the two countries.

The pro-EU faction got a boost when junior justice minister Phillip Lee resigned Tuesday, saying he could no longer support the government's "irresponsible" plans for Brexit.

An agreement that defused a potential rebellion over handing parliament more control over Britain's exit from the European Union looked in danger of unravelling on Wednesday, when the two camps argued over the shape of a possible compromise on a "meaningful vote". Could she already be paving the way to renege?

The British government has narrowly defeated a bid to give lawmakers more power over how the United Kingdom leaves the European Union - but only after offering concessions to a rebellious House of Commons.

Theresa May has said that Parliament can not be allowed to "overturn the will of the British people" on Brexit.

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