UK PM Wins Commons Brexit Vote But Told To Find Concessions

Thursday, 14 Jun, 2018

MPs voted to defeat amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill which were debated in the House of Commons, including amendments which sought to keep Britain in the single market and a customs union with the EU.

May is resisting changes approved by the House of Lords that would soften Britain's exit from the European Union, because she says they will weaken the government's negotiating position.

In a highly charged atmosphere in parliament, lawmakers who oppose the government said they had received death threats and brandished a copy of the Daily Express newspaper, which ran a headline saying: "Ignore the will of the people at your peril".

Compared to the government's proposal, this is a shorter time to respond, and gives parliament a vote to approve the response.

They have an ace up their sleeve as they go into talks with the government: if May reneges on her pledge, pro-EU members of the House of Lords will amend her legislation again.

Before the vote on the Labour amendment, which the party lost by 322 to 240, lawmaker Laura Smith resigned from her junior role in the team "shadowing" the cabinet office and five others left their roles as parliamentary private secretaries. The Lords have proposed amendments to the Bill and now it's up to the Commons to decide which, if any, changes they'll accept.

Five Labour MPs have resigned from frontbench roles in a blow to Jeremy Corbyn over a key Brexit vote, the Labour party has announced.

Talks with rebels will take place over coming days to negotiate a new form of words defining what say parliament will have over the process and will reveal how much ground May has given to the pro-Europeans.

The Labour Party's Chuka Umunna, who backed staying in the European Union, welcomed the concession as the end of the government threatening to allow Britain to crash out of the European Union without a deal.

The government won the first set of votes Tuesday but looked set to face defeat on the issue of whether Parliament should have a "meaningful vote" on the Brexit deal.

Theresa May ultimately persuaded all but two of her MPs to back her in the decisive vote in Westminster on Tuesday - but she increasingly appears little more than a hostage to the warring factions in a bitterly divided Conservative party. As the clock ticked down to the vote, two rebels stood up to say they were satisfied with what the government had offered them.

A Downing Street source said: "We will get a good Brexit deal that works for everybody in the UK".

These should be interesting discussion indeed as, although she had made concessions, May has also said that she will not allow MPs to tie her hands in the Brexit negotiations.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, chair of the influential European Research Group of MPs, urged Mrs May to reject outright Mr Grieve's further call for MPs to effectively take control of negotiations in the last resort if no deal is agreed by February 2019.

The bill will then go back to the Lords on Monday.

So the rebels might sit tight until July, when they will have another opportunity to force May to change direction and keep closer ties to the bloc.

He said Mrs May promised to table amendments in the House of Lords that will address their concerns. After a bumpy week of Brexit spats within her administration and with the EU, May wants to fend off another setback in a long-awaited showdown with restive lawmakers.