Five Labour frontbenchers quit over Brexit vote

14 Juin, 2018, 03:41 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
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Labour MPs had been whipped to abstain on the motion to disagree with the Lords EEA amendment. MPs will vote again on the issue later in the summer.

MPs, ministers and officials all agreed Tuesday that a soft Brexit or even the prospect of no Brexit is greatly increased - so too the prospect of a snap early election before the end of the year.

Davis said giving Parliament power to direct the government's hand in talks would be "an unconstitutional shift which risks undermining our negotiations with the European Union".

Further votes on EU Withdrawal Bill amendments will take place on Wednesday, with no defeats expected for the government after ministers agreed a compromise wording over post-Brexit plans for a "customs arrangement".

Attempts to keep the United Kingdom in the European Economic Area after Brexit have been defeated in the House of Commons, amid a major Labour revolt over the issue. A total of 89 Labour MPs defied Corbyn in the vote on this amendment, making it the party's biggest Brexit rebellion yet.

The key Brexit bill is back in the Commons today and tomorrow for a series of knife-edge votes that will determine the future of the Brexit process.

"I understand the difficulties MPs representing constituencies which voted strongly for Leave or Remain have on the EEA amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill".

The concession seems to be a victory for the Remain camp and last night Tory Brexiteers were concerned the climbdown could damage the prime minister's ability to walk away from the negotiations if the European Union offer was not good enough.

A Tory Remain rebel has warned Theresa May that "if she f**ks us, she's f**ked, ' after Conservative MPs were given assurances by the prime minister that a compromise Brexit amendment to the 'meaningful vote" will be upheld.

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Here are the key amendments which MPs voted on Wednesday evening. But pro-EU Conservative lawmaker Heidi Allen said it was inevitable "we will have to come to a customs union agreement", even if it was given another label. Britain and the EU agree there must be no customs posts or other border infrastructure to impede the free flow of people and goods, but the United Kingdom has not said how that can be achieved if it is outside the customs union.

326 voted against a customs union with EU, while 298 voted for it.

Supporters of this policy argue it would protect British jobs and go some way to preserving the invisible Irish border, while detractors point out it would prevent Britain from signing its own trade deals after it has left the EU.

If May is defeated by a wide margin her position as Prime Minister could be threatened. "It enables parliament to dictate to government its course of action in an global negotiation".

One government official said: "It's not over yet".

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

'The Labour party respects the outcome of the European Union referendum and does not support the EEA or Norway model as it is not the right for option for Britain.

327 MPs voted against the EEA, while 126 voted for it. Majority: 201. The Labour party, the main opposition, is also divided on Brexit.

Laura Smith resigned from her junior shadow cabinet role in the run-up to the vote. If that wasn't bad enough, they rebelled in different directions, with 75 voting for EEA membership, and 15 voting against.

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