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Fri, 10 July 2020

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EXPLAINED: Every single Brexit amendment MPs are voting on tonight

EXPLAINED: Every single Brexit amendment MPs are voting on tonight
3 min read

Days after Theresa May asked the European Union for a Brexit delay, MPs are once again getting a chance to make their voice heard on a way forward. Here are the amendments to the Prime Minister's EU motion that they will vote on at around 10pm tonight.

Corbyn amendment D - Labour demands parliamentary time for MPs to get vote on different Brexit options

This is essentially Labour’s attempt to demand what’s being known as ‘indicative votes’, or the chance for MPs to have their say on a whole host of Brexit options in a bid to break the current parliamentary deadlock.

The amendment notes the two defeats of Theresa May’s own Brexit deal and urges ministers “to provide sufficient parliamentary time this week for this House to find a majority for a different approach”.

Options floated by the opposition frontbench include Labour’s own plan, the backbench Norway-style proposal being talked up by a cross party team of MPs and known as ‘Common Market 2.0’, a customs union with the EU, and a “public vote”. Mr Corbyn said: "It’s time for Parliament to take control of the Brexit process from this failed Prime Minister, and end the chaos and confusion created by the Government’s divisions and incompetence."

Letwin amendment A - Cross-party push to let MPs take control of Brexit through 'indicative votes'

This is the real one to watch tonight. It’s a cross-party push, spearheaded by a team of senior MPs, to make parliamentary room for ‘indicative votes’ - allowing MPs the chance to have their say on a range of different ways forward on Brexit. Signed by leading Tories including former Cabinet ministers Sir Oliver Letwin and Dominic Grieve, as well as Labour committee chairs Hilary Benn and Yvette Cooper, it seeks to scrap all government business in the Commons this Wednesday to make room for a series of votes on different Brexit outcomes.

The chances of the amendment succeeding tonight are high, with Chancellor Philip Hammond this weekend admitting that it was likely to pass. The Government - which has signalled it intends to give Parliament its own version of indicative votes anyway if the bid fails - will be hoping that the prospect of largely-Remain supporting MPs seizing control of the Brexit agenda could spook enough Brexiteers into swinging behind Theresa May’s twice-defeated Brexit deal.

Beckett amendment F - Orders government to consult Parliament on a no-deal Brexit or Article 50 extension

Labour grandee Margaret Beckett has drawn up this amendment which says that if the UK comes within seven days of leaving the EU without a deal then the Government must ask Parliament whether MPs approve a no-deal Brexit or whether they want to go for a further extension of Article 50, thereby delaying Britain’s departure. Signatories include Labour’s George Howarth, the SNP’s Joanna Cherry, and Lib Dem Ed Davey.