MPs to vote on Article 50 extension after rejecting no-deal Brexit

Leroy Wright
March 14, 2019

Some 242 MPs voted for the deal.

There is concern the chaos would spread to markets and supply chains, and others fear it could cause shortages of food and medicines.

If no deal is agreed by March 20, "then it is highly likely the European Council at its meeting the following day would require a clear goal for any extension, not least to determine its length, and any extension beyond 30 June 2019 would require the United Kingdom to hold European Parliament elections in May 2019", Thursday's motion says.

After the vote, Prime Minister Theresa May again urged the MPs to back her Brexit deal with the European Union - already rejected twice in the House - saying that otherwise a lengthy extension of Article 50 will be required.

He said: "I made a promise in the election to call a referendum and I called the referendum".

After briefing her cabinet on the next steps, May is due to face questions in parliament from 12:00 pm (1200 GMT), immediately followed by finance minister Philip Hammond's annual budget update.

Farage - a staunch Brexit supporter - expressed his opposition to the deal, saying it would not support the UK's best interests.

"The party is going to be fundamentally divided over this".

A bill was later tabled advising of a vote on whether to delay Brexit by three months, until June 30.

However, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said May's Brexit vision had been "decisively rejected" and that it was now time for the prime minister to change course.

After losing her voice, May lost her vote.

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MPs also voted against the Malthouse Compromise B amendment which sought to delay Brexit until May 22, by a majority of 210.

An earlier version of the plan was defeated by the largest margin in parliamentary history.

"If the House votes for an extension, the Government will seek to agree to that extension with the European Union and bring forward the necessary legislation to change the exit date commensurate with that extension".

Many fear Brexit will divide the West as it grapples with both the unconventional U.S. presidency of Donald Trump and growing assertiveness from Russian Federation and China, leaving Britain economically weaker and with its security capabilities depleted. A second SNP amendment seeks to add language confirming the Government accepts it can revoke Article 50. Parliament could also consider a second national referendum, effectively asking Britons again if they want to leave the 28-member group. "Or does it want to leave with a deal, but not this deal?" she asked.

"These are unenviable choices but. they must now be faced".

A spokesman for European Council President Donald Tusk, representing EU governments, said Britain would have to provide a "credible justification" for any request for a delay.

EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said the bloc would need to know why Britain wanted to extend talks and it was up to London to find a way out of the deadlock.

"This is very risky territory we are going into with regard to our democracy", he told Reuters.

In the meantime, the pound has a long way to recovery against the dollar - especially since a no-deal Brexit is not fully off the table.

"We could seek to negotiate a different deal, however, the European Union has been clear that the deal on the table is the only deal available". If it passes, the United Kingdom would crash out of the European Union on March 29th with no arrangement with the bloc which would also mean a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland, a scenario that a majority of the MPs oppose.

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