(AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told Parliament that his new Brexit deal can heal the rift in British politics and unite warring factions.
He used a rare Saturday session to plead with lawmakers to back the new plan.
He says it would “take back control” of Britain’s borders, fishing and trade and preserve the gains of the Good Friday agreement that helped end violence in Northern Ireland.
Johnson faces a close vote on his plan with opposition parties determined to block it.
The Letwin amendment – if passed- does 2 things: invites govt to bring forward legislation AND triggers the Benn Act. If it’s passed and then the final vote is pulled- those two things still happen anyway. Benn has a midnight deadline whatever – and govt bringing leg on Monday.
— Anushka Asthana (@AnushkaAsthana) October 19, 2019
BREAKING: If Letwin passes No 10 will pull the vote pic.twitter.com/RyvdxtV3MT
— Tim Shipman (@ShippersUnbound) October 19, 2019
But his plan to get Parliament to approve his Brexit deal with the European Union has been thrown into doubt.
Lawmakers will first vote on whether to withhold approval until legislation to implement the agreement has been passed. That would bring another law into play that would force Johnson to seek a Brexit delay from the European Union.
House of Commons Speaker John Bercow said would he would allow a vote on an amendment that essentially puts the vote on the deal off until another day.
Those behind the amendment say it will remove the risk that the UK could leave the bloc without a deal on Oct. 31 because the law is not in place.
If Letwin amendment renders today’s vote meaningless, Number 10 will go even harder on the message that this is an obstructionist parliament that only backs ‘dither and delay’
— James Forsyth (@JGForsyth) October 19, 2019
Hear Letwin was calling Lord Pannick from No10 when he went in there for talks. Senior Tory: ‘This isn't Letwin's amendment, it's Pannick's amendment, Pannick is the organ grinder – Letwin's just the useful idiot.'
— Harry Cole (@MrHarryCole) October 19, 2019