Theresa May is urged to delay crunch vote on her Brexit deal AGAIN until she wins enough concessions from Brussels to win over rebel MPs
- Mrs May insisted vote would go ahead next week after being axed in December
- Ministers are expected to urge PM to delay vote in tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting
- Cabinet source said a vote now would ‘crystallise the lack of support for the deal’
Theresa May is being urged to delay the crunch Commons vote on her Brexit deal a second time until she has secured enough concessions from Brussels to win over her mutinous MPs.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister insisted the vote would go ahead next week after it was axed at the last minute in December.
But with dozens of Eurosceptic Tories and her DUP governing partners threatening to join forces with Labour to vote it down, several ministers are expected to use tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting to urge her to delay again.
One said: ‘It was a mistake last month to name the date for a new vote before knowing we had the concessions needed to win it.
Theresa May is being urged to delay the crunch Commons vote on her Brexit deal a second time until she has secured enough concessions from Brussels to win over her mutinous MPs
‘All a vote now would achieve is to crystallise the lack of support for the deal and potentially kill it. If we need more time to negotiate with Brussels then we should delay.
‘I know she’s saying it will go ahead, but she said that last time, too. Parliament would huff and puff, but in the end there is nothing they can do.’
Another Cabinet source said: ‘She was persuaded to pull the vote last time because she recognised that you cannot go ahead with something if you’re facing a landslide defeat. That logic still applies.’
The vote is expected to be held on or around January 15.
The Daily Mail revealed on Saturday that she hoped to offer MPs a ‘double lock’ on her deal to ease fears about the Irish border backstop
Asked if it was ‘definitely’ going ahead this time, she told BBC1’s Andrew Marr Show: ‘Yes, we are going to hold the vote.’
The Daily Mail revealed on Saturday that she hoped to offer MPs a ‘double lock’ on her deal to ease fears about the Irish border backstop.
Jobs are at risk, letter warns Theresa
We are writing to you about the threat leaving the EU without a deal poses to manufacturing.
Leaving without a deal would cause unnecessary economic damage. Trading on World Trade Organisation terms would make manufacturers less competitive and make it difficult to justify producing goods in the UK for export.
Leaving without a deal would make investment in UK manufacturing a real challenge for global firms.
Thousands of jobs across the country will be put at immediate risk.
As a cross-party group of MPs, business leaders and representatives, we are united in our determination that the UK must not crash out of the EU without a deal.
This will involve a Commons amendment giving Parliament the right to serve 12 months’ notice that the UK intended to quit the backstop if Brussels soft-pedalled on a trade deal.
Mrs May is also seeking a written guarantee from the EU that it will conclude a comprehensive trade deal with the UK within 12 months of the end of the Brexit transition – effectively limiting the need for the backstop to no more than a year.
In a third initiative aimed at reassuring Ulster’s DUP, she will offer a guarantee that there will be no divergence between laws in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK during any period in the backstop.
Government sources said further details of the proposals would be released ahead of the start of the Commons debate on the Brexit deal on Wednesday.
But sources admitted the PM had not achieved a breakthrough with Brussels on the scale needed to win over the DUP, whose support is seen as critical in persuading Eurosceptic Tories to drop their opposition.
Nigel Dodds, the DUP’s deputy leader, said yesterday that the backstop – the plan to maintain an open border on the island of Ireland if the UK leaves the EU without a deal – remained the ‘poison’ affecting any vote on the withdrawal agreement in the Commons.
He added: ‘Theresa May still insists that what she has negotiated is a good deal. She should remember that it would already have been consigned to the bin but for her pulling the vote in December.’
Labour chaos on new poll
The Labour split over a second referendum was laid bare yesterday as Jeremy Corbyn’s top team gave opposing views.
Party chairman Ian Lavery said calls for a new poll were ‘disrespectful’ because voters had already opted to leave.
Labour’s policy is to push for a general election if the Prime Minister fails to get her Brexit deal through Parliament. International trade spokesman Barry Gardiner suggested Labour should promise to negotiate a better Brexit deal that could then be put to the public.
However Mr Corbyn, a Eurosceptic, has come under pressure to throw his weight behind a second referendum if Labour cannot force an early election.
Brexit spokesman Sir Keir Starmer and deputy leader Tom Watson have talked up the possibility of a second poll.