Theresa May suffers second Commons defeat on her Brexit plans in 24 hours

Theresa May’s Brexit plan suffers second Commons defeat in 24 hours

Prime Minister Theresa May in the House of Commons earlier on Wednesday. Image: Parliament TV

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Theresa May's Brexit proposals have received a major setback after she suffered a second defeat in the House of Commons within 24 hours.

MPs backed an amendment demanding the Government return within three sitting days with a new plan if it is defeated in next week's meaningful vote on the Prime Minister's Brexit deal.

The House voted by 308 to 297 in favour of the amendment tabled by the pro-Remain Conservative MP Dominic Grieve with the support of other Tory rebels.

Earlier on Wednesday Speaker John Bercow faced anger from other Conservative MPs for ignoring Commons rules in allowing the vote on the amendment to go ahead.

 

'I'm trying to do the right thing' 

A series of MPs rose to complain that the Government motion should not have been amendable.

But Mr Bercow defended his decision saying: "My understanding is the motion is amendable, I'm clear in my mind about that."

As heckles were heard from the Conservative benches, he said: "I'm trying to do the right thing and make the right judgments.

"That is what I have tried to do and what I will go on doing."

The vote follows after Tuesday night's Commons defeat for the Government on a motion intended to limit its powers to change taxes in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

The passing of Tuesday’s amendment means the Treasury is not allowed to use its tax-changing powers to begin a no-deal exit on March 29 unless it has been approved by a vote by MPs.

The amendment, tabled by Labour's Yvette Cooper, was only passed with a majority of seven. 

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