MPs Back Vote on Stopping No Deal, BoJo Govt Tables Motion to Hold Election

Demonstrators holding EU flags gather in Parliament Square following an anti Brexit, pro-European Union (EU) march in London on March 25, 2017, ahead of the British government's planned triggering of Article 50 next week. Britain will launch the process of leaving the European Union on March 29, setting a historic …
DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

MPs have voted to seize control of the agenda and have a vote on stopping no deal Brexit, with Prime Minister Johnson confirming the government will table a motion to hold a General Election.

10:20pm GMT update: Prime Minister Johnson confirms government will table motion to hold General Election

Prime Minister Johnson said the vote “means parliament is on the brink of wrecking any deal that we might be able to negotiate with Brussels, because tomorrow’s bill would hand control of the negotiations to the EU” meaning further delay and handing more control to the bloc.

“Since I refuse to go along with that plan, we are going to have to make a choice. I don’t want an election, I don’t think the public want an election, but if the House votes for this bill tomorrow, the public is going to have to choose who goes to Brussels on October the 17th to sort this out and take this country forward,” he added, saying a potential Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn would accept whatever Brussels demands “and we would have years more arguments over Brexit”.

Mr Johnson said that if he were not able to negotiate a deal with Brussels, “we will leave anyway on October the 31st”.

Reiterating, the prime minister said: “I don’t want an election, but if MPs vote tomorrow to stop negotiations and compel another pointless delay to Brexit, potentially for years, then that would be the only way to resolve this.

“I can confirm that we are tonight tabling a motion under the Fixed-Term Parliament Act.”

10:10pm GMT update: MPs vote to seize control of Commons agenda, vote on stopping No Deal
MPs have voted to take over House of Commons business on Wednesday and vote on a bill to stop no deal on October 31st and forcing the government to seek an extension of Article 50, delaying Brexit for a third time.

MPs voted for 328 and 301 against the motion to “give backbench MPs control of parliamentary time tomorrow to pass legislation aimed at preventing a no deal Brexit,” with a majority of 17.

The vote followed an emergency debate in response to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s decision to prorogue Parliament for five weeks in the lead up to Brexit day. A response from the government from either Johnson or the leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg is expected after the result.

It has been reported the Prime Minister Johnson would call for a snap election on October 15th — the date revised from the 14th to accommodate a high Jewish holiday — if MPs tried to thwart his Brexit plans.

The prime minister, whilst trying to renegotiate Theresa May’s Brexit treaty with the EU, has vowed to take the UK out of EU on October 31st, “do or die”, with or without a deal.

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Speaker of the House of Commons John Bercow has granted an emergency debate to discuss whether MPs can take control of the lower house’s agenda and vote on a bill that would block a no deal Brexit on October 31st.

On Tuesday night, Remainer Tory Sir Oliver Letwin requested of the Speaker an urgent debate to discuss a motion to further delay Brexit and stop a no deal exit.

The Speaker, who has been accused of pro-Remain bias, said he was “satisfied the matter is proper to be discussed under the terms of Standing Order number 24”, adding that the debate will be held today as first item of public business, starting before 7pm and lasting for up to three hours.

If after debating for three hours the House backs the motion, a vote could be held as early as tomorrow on whether to make it illegal to leave the EU on October 31st without a deal, forcing the government to seek an extension of Article 50.

Downing Street had said the anti-Brexit bill was a “blueprint for legislative purgatory”.

Sources speaking to media earlier in the day said that should Remainer MPs plot to thwart Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Brexit plans, he will call a snap election for October 14th. Even without the threat, a General Election is likely after Philip Lee crossed the floor, defecting from the Tories to the Liberal Democrats and wiping out the government’s majority.

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