March 18 (UPI) — British House Speaker John Bercow blocked Prime Minister Theresa May from asking Members of Parliament to hold another vote on her Brexit deal unless it is fundamentally changed.
Bercow said Monday he would not allow a third “meaningful vote” on “substantially the same” deal MPs already rejected, creating what some ministers called a “constitutional crisis” with 11 days before Britain is set to leave the European Union, the BBC reported.
MPs have twice voted against the withdrawal deal May has negotiated with the E.U. and the government had been considering a third vote to get it through Parliament before Britain is set to leave on March 29.
Bercow cited the guide to parliamentary procedure stating the deal “may not be brought forward again during the same session” until it is “not different in terms of wording, but different in terms of substance.”
“Frankly we could have done without this, but it’s something we’re going to have to negotiate with and deal with,” Solicitor General Robert Buckland said.
Bercow’s decision is likely to force May to seek an extension to article 50, which would delay Britain’s exit from the E.U.
During this time, Britain would look to find a way to break the political stalemate to reach a deal with the E.U. and possibly hold a second referendum on Brexit.
May could also negotiate a “get-out clause” in the extension, allowing Britain to cut the deal short if the Brexit deal is passed before the European parliamentary elections.