Brexit: Theresa May’s latest defeat in parliament

With MP’s still concerned over the risks of a no-deal Brexit, Theresa May’s latest Brexit strategy has been rejected by MP’s. This is the second deal to be rejected by parliament – the previous being defeated by 303 votes to 258.

This has caused increased confusion, as it’s unclear what the UK is trying to actually achieve with the talks with the EU. For example, a number of MP’s supporting Brexit abstained from the vote altogether, after claiming the the deal ruled out a “no-deal Brexit”.

However, other groups of MP’s, especially within the labour party have urged Theresa May to completely rule out the idea of leaving the EU without a deal. This would see trading relations between the UK and EU revert to WTO terms on 29th March and would most likely be chaotic.

Following the last vote in parliament, Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn said that “there is no majority for the Prime Minister’s course of action for dealing with Brexit. The government cannot keep ignoring Parliament.”

Previously, Theresa May re-opened the negotiations with the EU over the Irish backstop arrangement in order to try and agree on arrangements. The idea of a hard border between The Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland was one of the biggest issues for MP’s in the first vote. A deal hasn’t been reached on this yet, though.

A statement issued by the government, however, is more hopeful. It says the following: “The prime minister continues to believe, and the debate itself indicated, that far from objecting to securing changes to the backstop that will allow us to leave with a deal, there was a concern from some Conservative colleagues about taking no deal off the table at this stage.”

“The motion on 29 January remains the only one the House of Commons has passed expressing what it does want, and that is legally binding changes to address concerns about the backstop. The government will continue to pursue this with the EU to ensure we leave on time on 29 March.”

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