Sunday, 16 December, 2018

Theresa May told to delay Brexit vote

Britain's May launches high-stakes parliamentary debate on Brexit plan UK’s Prime Minister Theresa May to face gruelling Brexit battle this week
Orlando Vargas | 07 December, 2018, 12:43

Following losing three key votes in a devastating day in parliament on Monday, the Prime Minister will now have to give MP's more say on Brexit if her deal is voted down.

She suggested MPs could be "given a role" in deciding whether to activate the backstop, which is created to stop the return of a physical border.

Asked if the DUP was prepared to precipitate a general election, the party's Brexit spokesman Sammy Wilson told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "If it comes to the point where the Government makes, shows, a determination to implement the Withdrawal Agreement with its damaging terms at present, or some future version of it, which is still equally damaging, we will not be supporting the Government".

"It is unfortunate for Government to be in contempt of Parliament, would she agree that it is worse for Parliament to be in contempt of the British people, which is what will happen if we do not deliver on Brexit".

The adjustment to the meaningful vote on the Withdrawal Agreement would mean Parliament would have to approve a decision to trigger the backstop arrangement or extend the transition period beyond December 2020.

"If it can't, then I certainly would welcome the vote being deferred until such time as we can answer that question.' Mrs May's spokesman insisted the vote would go ahead as planned and she was simply 'taking stock" as senior ministers came and went from No.10 yesterday.

The House of Commons leader, Andrea Leadsom, also told parliament the vote would go ahead on December 11.

Last month the Prime Minister delivered a stark ultimatum to MPs - her deal, no deal or no Brexit.

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If Parliament votes against the deal, the risk of a chaotic and costly "no deal" after Brexit next March will rise significantly - and if it can not be quickly renegotiated in Brussels, the United Kingdom may face a snap election or a new Brexit referendum.

Britain's Finance Minister Philip Hammond concurred, saying it is a delusion to think that the government will be able to negotiate a new divorce deal if May's agreement is defeated in a vote in Parliament next week.

"Perhaps the Prime Minister can tell us which paragraphs breach the national interest?"

Theresa May has been given a glimmer of hope over the Brexit deal vote after a group of Tory backbenchers tabled an amendment that would give MPs some control over the controversial Northern Ireland border backstop.

The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), which normally votes with the government under its confidence-and-supply pact, was among parties that voted to force the publication of the legal advice.

"People have a concern of the backstop, that we could be in it indefinitely".

"There are a number of items in the current deal I am not entirely happy with and we need to continue working towards a deal by March 29". But lawmakers who attended the meeting said he did not offer a solution to persuade them to back it.

During the 2016 referendum, Christchurch voters backed leaving the European Union by a majority of 17 per cent, making it the leading pro-Brexit constituency in the Bournemouth conurbation. Another said it was: "Too little, too late". However this is looking increasingly unlikely, with Labour, the SNP and other Tory Brexiters stating publicly that they will not back the December 11 deal.

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