Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

Brexit: House of Lords EU Withdrawal Bill amendment voted down by MPs


In a battle of wills between the prime minister and the House of Commons on Tuesday, it was Theresa May who emerged weakened having been pushed into a series of significant concessions to anti-Brexit Conservative MPs in order to fend off a damaging parliamentary defeat.

The government has avoided a major defeat on its Brexit bill by 324 votes to 298 after a late concession.

The minister also showed a united front with the Prime Minister by denying reports he came close to resigning.

The SNP doesn't have any Lords because of an ideological disagreement with the concept of an unelected upper house - but it does have plenty of MPs in the Commons.

Shortly before MPs began voting, Sandbach praised the government for making "important concessions".

More news: E3 2018: Metro Exodus Gameplay Trailer

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.

Talks with Brussels have stalled over the fraught issue of the Irish border, but both sides are hoping to agree a final deal by October in time for the break on March 29, 2019. The European Union Withdrawal Bill, meant to enact Britain's exit from the bloc, has had a rocky ride through Parliament.

MPs voted down the Lords amendment on "sifting regulations" by a majority of 22.

The government would have to give MPs a vote on the next steps, if parliament rejects the Brexit deal - or if no deal has been reached by the end of November.

It is expected that Tuesday will see MPs decide whether Parliament should have the power to set the Government's negotiating goals if Theresa May's deal with Brussels is voted down.

More news: Trump signs `comprehensive document' with Kim as summit ends

Grieve told MPs: "If we don't achieve a deal at all, the fact is we are going to be facing an vast crisis".

The frontpages of Leave-backing British newspapers said accepting the amendments would betray the 52% who backed Brexit in the seismic 2016 referendum.

After days of frantic lobbying by Conservative officials to try to get the party on board, May renewed appeals for unity over the "meaningful vote", after the government appeared to have secured a compromise to stop a similar rebellion on Wednesday over Britain's trading ties with the EU.

His pro-European colleague Anna Soubry hit back that hardline eurosceptics were seeking to "take us over the cliff of hard Brexit". A paper laying out the U.K. government position, due to be published this month, has been delayed because the Cabinet can not agree on a united stance.

Opposition Labour lawmaker Chuka Umunna had earlier accused Britain's tabloids of intimidation, holding up Tuesday's edition of the eurosceptic Daily Express. It also attacked the unelected nature of the House of Lords (which traditionally scrutinizes laws passed to it by the elected lower chamber), linking it to a perceived attempt to frustrate the Brexit process.

More news: Robbie Williams to perform at World Cup opening ceremony

The change reduces the likelihood that Britain could leave the European Union without a deal if it does not like the divorce terms.

Like this: