MPs reject withdrawal agreement

Brexit LIVE: MPs reject withdrawal agreement

Friday, March 29, 2019

Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement has been defeated a third time by MPs.

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14.40 - Withdrawal agreement defeated for a third time

Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement has been defeated a third time by MPs.

The deal was defeated by 344 votes to 286, a majority of 58.

The Prime Minister had hoped to persuade the Commons to support the deal by warning Conservative Brexiteers that it was the only chance to “guarantee” Brexit.

Despite the support of prominent Leave figures, including Jacob Rees-Mogg and Boris Johnson, the withdrawal agreement did not pass.

Theresa May told MPs that she feared “we are reaching the limit of the process within this house”.

The UK is now set to leave the European Union without a deal on April 12.


14.20 - Theresa May has 'deep personal regret' over Brexit delay

The prime minister has said that she “personally regrets” that the UK is not leaving the European Union today.

Prime Minister Theresa May, concluding the debate, said: "Today should have been the day the UK left the EU - that we are not leaving today is a matter of deep personal regret to me.

"But I remain committed to the UK leaving the EU and that is why I brought this motion to the House today.

"There are those who will say 'the House has rejected every option so far, you'll probably lose so why bother?' - I bother because this is the last opportunity to guarantee Brexit.”



12.30 - Dominic Raab announces support for withdrawal agreement

Former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab has announced he will support the Prime Minister in today's vote. 

Mr Raab resigned from his position in November because he could not support Theresa May's deal. 

He told MPs he still believed the deal to be a bad one, but added: "With the government purporting to take no-deal of the table, we potentially now face a far worse alternative that could revese Brexit and betray our democracy."

Mr Raab joins other prominent Brexiteers, including Iain Duncan-Smith and Boris Johnson, who have indicated their support for the Prime Minister today. 



12.00 - DUP confirms they will vote against the deal

DUP Brexit spokesperson Sammy Wilson has told MPs his party's position has not changed on the deal. 

He told MPs that the DUP would not vote for a deal that threatened Northern Ireland's position within the United Kingdom and betrays the wishes of those who voted to leave. 

He added: "We have gone through a terrorist campaign for 40 years to try and remove us from the UK, and we are not prepared to see our constitutional position being altered by Brussels in a fit of pique against the UK for daring to leave the EU."

Labour Brexiteer Kate Hoey told MPs that if they voted for the deal it would be seen as "not supporting the people of Northern Ireland".


11.30 - IDS swings behind May

Tory Brexiteer and former leader Iain Duncan-Smith has signalled he will vote for Theresa May's deal after previously rejecting it. 

Mr Duncan-Smith told MPs he would now be voting for the deal as it was the "only way" to honour the referendum result. 

He added: "We need to have a moment where we recognise what we need to take hold of is that one element that gets us out, leaves us out, and then shuts down the debate about future referendums, and allows us to take the confidence that under a new leadership we can go forward to change the nature of what is in this process.

"I, therefore, say to my colleagues that for me this is not an easy decision because there is a lot about this Bill that I do not like - and I stand on that position.

"But I do say if we don't send this forward to look at the legislation we will rue that day because we will end up having to accept what I think is a damaging and destructive extension - meaning we will never leave the European Union."


10.30 - Cox urges MPs to support withdrawal agreement 

Attorney General Geoffrey Cox has warned MPs to suppor the withdrawal agreement or risk losing a "legal right" to an extension. 

Mr Cox told the Commons: "If this Withdrawal Agreement is not approved, then that extension will expire on April 11.

"That means that any other extension that this House might desire to be agreed by the union would be at its discretion, subject to the veto of 27 leaders.

"Therefore, by this evening, if the 11pm deadline expires and the agreement has not been approved, that legal right will expire with it.

"This is therefore the last opportunity to take advantage of our legal right."

Mr Cox urged MPs to support the government's motion and bring "certainty" to businesses and individuals.