Theresa May's Brexit deal to face 15 January vote

Wednesday, 09 Jan, 2019

The British government on Tuesday ruled out seeking an extension to the two-year period taking the country out of the European Union as Prime Minister Theresa May continued to seek further concessions from the EU ahead of a crucial parliamentary vote next week on her Brexit deal.

Labour's Yvette Cooper has expressed her delight tonight that the House of Commons voted for an amendment she had tabled to the government's finance bill, declaring on Twitter that it "shows the determination in Parliament to come together to prevent a chaotic & damaging #NoDeal that would hit manufacturing, policing & security".

After the result was announced, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn turned in his seat on the opposition front bench and applauded Ms Cooper, who he beat in the party's 2015 leadership election, giving her a big thumbs up.

"The real question for Members of Parliament who voted to give the public a say through the European referendum in 2016, who voted in large numbers to trigger Article 50, is the outcome of triggering Article 50 is you either have a deal and the EU have been clear that the only deal on the table is the PM's deal".

Britain's embattled Theresa May will make a push this week to persuade rebel lawmakers in her ruling Conservative party to back her contentious Brexit withdrawal agreement.

But parliamentary opposition to her deal remains fierce, with the main sticking point being the safety net "backstop" measure - which would guarantee no hard border is erected on the island of Ireland in the event that post-Brexit trade negotiations between the United Kingdom and the bloc prove unsuccessful. It faces a vote on 15 January.

Britain is due to quit the body in March, but the UK Prime Minister's deal with Brussels needs to be passed by the UK Parliament.

"Today's trial can not possibly duplicate the reality of 4,000 trucks being held at Manston airport in the event of a no-deal Brexit", the RHA's chief executive Richard Burnett said in a statement.

"I'm anxious that we could come to the crunch and parliament wouldn't have the powers to stop it happening, and I think we have a responsibility not to just stand by".

Duff told this website that a "new version" of the political declaration, with "higher legal standing", could assist the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement.

The technical changes to a crucial piece of government legislation were meant to demonstrate to ministers the strength of opposition to a no-deal Brexit in the Commons.

In Brussels, European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas repeated that the Brexit deal would not be reopened.

"The closer we get to March 29 without a deal, the more assets will be transferred and headcount hired locally or relocated", he told City AM. "I think it's those kind of assurances we are happy to give".

May has ruled out another public referendum and the government and businesses have been ramping up preparations for a no-deal exit, with Britain set to leave the European Union at the end of March.

"There are no negotiations, because all we have on the table is what we consider given, acquired and approved", he said.

Many Conservative MPs continue to believe the deal does not represent the Brexit the country voted for, and some are actively calling for Britain to leave with no deal.

"We will not be leaving with no deal", he said.

But Mr Fox, who backs Mrs May's deal, said it would be "irresponsible to tie the government's hands" at this stage by ruling out any options.