Groundhog Day for May as UK Brexit bill faces new challenge

Theresa May Dominic Grieve

Britain's House of Lords on Monday rejected Prime Minister Theresa May's version of the BREXIT Bill by a landslide vote.

"I was particularly sorry to see that (Ms Shah) was forced to come and vote here while she was unwell, but the fact that she had to come all the way from Bradford when she was so unwell is clearly a matter for (Ms Vaz's) party".

The PM said more detail on the UK-EU's future relationship will be given soon.

Hailsham said the government's offer not only failed to deliver a promised meaningful vote but was worse. One of the leading Brexiteers, Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, said the Prime minister can now attend the European Union leaders summit next week "with full strength" now that the legislation to the leave the European Union was part of UK Law, according to the BBC.

Before the Commons vote, Dominic Grieve, leader of the would-be rebels - who wanted to ensure MPs had the power to stop the United Kingdom leaving without a deal - said the "sovereignty of Parliament" had been acknowledged.

The main Conservative rebel to the Government, the former attorney general Dominic Grieve MP, was attempting to attach an amendment on to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill which would have allowed Parliament to block the option of a no deal scenario in the Brexit process if the Government could not reach an agreement with the EU.

The government last week agreed to an amendment stating that if there is no deal by January 21 next year, ministers must put a statement to a vote in parliament.

The leader of the Commons has privately voiced concern that ill and heavily pregnant Labour MPs were made to go through the division lobbies to vote in the debate on the European Union withdrawal bill on Wednesday, after she was forced to defend what had happened in the House of Commons.

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The Tory government is so keen to avoid a humiliating defeat that its whips are refusing to help ill and hospitalised Labour MPs take part in the vote, according to various reports.

The result of the vote is expected to be close.

The Guardian reported that Grieve voted against his own amendment following the last minute government concession, but six Conservative MPs voted against the government in the vote.

Phillip Lee, who resigned as a government minister in order to back a strengthened role for Parliament, acknowledged there had been a concerted effort to win over would-be rebels, including the "dark arts" of persuasion in the corridors of power.

Tune in this time next week for exactly the same vote again?

He said the government continued to try to persuade MPs, telling the BBC: "We were always going to get the normal dark arts of Westminster taking place".

MPs will then vote on this statement.

As a crucial Brexit battle comes to a head in the British parliament on Wednesday, MPs are weighing not just their own views but also their personal safety amid increasingly toxic public debate.

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