U.K. Minister Phillip Lee Resigns Ahead of Brexit Bill Showdown

U.K. Minister Phillip Lee Resigns Ahead of Brexit Bill Showdown

However flabbily drafted the clause may be, defeat for the government would send a strong signal that Parliament doesn't back the negotiating goals May is pursuing.

"I understand the difficulties MPs representing constituencies which voted strongly for Leave or Remain have on the EEA amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill".

But Solicitor General Robert Buckland said while talks may "yield fruit" - he could not guarantee a change in policy.

"The people want us to leave the EU".

"Partnership, love dance - don't care what you call it, that's what we will need to avoid any border to Northern Ireland", she said.

May is seeking to overturn 14 of 15 amendments passed by the Lords earlier this year, but has a fight on her hands due to her fragile majority in the 650-seat Commons.

Parliament will vote Tuesday on a key piece of legislation, the E.U. Withdrawal bill, that would transfer European Union laws now on British books into British law after Brexit.

(EurActiv) - Theresa May avoided a humiliating parliamentary defeat to her government's European Union withdrawal bill, but only after appearing to promise rebel MPs an effective block on a "no deal" Brexit.

The victory - by 324 votes to 298 - only came after public haggling between ministers and would-be rebels and a meeting between Mrs May and more than a dozen Tory MPs. Just hours earlier, Downing Street had signalled the prime minister had no intention of accepting Grieve's compromise amendment to the European Union withdrawal bill, tabled by the former attorney general and aimed at ensuring ministers can't "crash out of the European Union by ministerial fiat", as he called it. Pro-Brexit Conservative lawmaker Edward Leigh slammed pro-EU colleagues, saying Parliament must respect the result of the June 2016 voter referendum.

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Politics is often about the big picture, but sometimes it is a festival for pedants. "I trust our PM to honour the undertaking she gave".

"If it were to turn out there was a problem, we will deal with it". He said he would vote against the prime minister. Her commitment to her backbenchers is a promise rather than a legal obligation, which she may negate, or may not be able to fulfil if she is not the prime minister at the time.

However, whatever form it takes it will give parliament a greater say over the final deal in the event that the government either fails to reach an exit deal, or proposes an exit agreement which parliament does not accept. But it's also worth recalling that the wording of his amendment was later deemed so weak that the Lords had to beef it up.

"Anything that undermines the government at home will make negotiations with the European Union more hard", May told a meeting of her cabinet.

"There is no inconsistency here. It is clear we don't just want to have a chat but a proper discussion and negotiation".

During three and a half hours of tense debate on amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill, government whips held whispered conferences with a handful of Tories on the Commons benches.

But the cabinet's anxiety about the nail-biting parliamentary arithmetic increased significantly after the resignation of Bracknell MP Phillip Lee, who left his post on Tuesday morning to free his hand to vote against the government.

However, although the prime minister was spared the complication and embarrassment of defeats of Wednesday, issues like customs are set to be revisited in a few weeks time when more Brexit-related legislation is put to MPs.

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