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Labour claim late-night Brexit votes could put MPs' safety at risk

2 min read

MPs could be put in danger if they are forced to take part in late-night votes on the Government's flagship Brexit bill, according to Labour.

Opposition Chief Whip Nick Brown made the startling claim as he addressed a meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party.

The Government stunned MPs by announcing that they will be given just 12 hours to debate and vote on 15 House of Lords amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill when it returns to the Commons on 12 June.

The move saw Theresa May accused of "contempt of Parliament" by furious opponents.

Shadow Brexit minister Jenny Chapman said: "This is a shameful decision by the Government. Ministers have spent months delaying Brexit votes in Parliament because they fear defeat. Now they want to railroad through crucial legislation and limit the chance for proper debate and scrutiny."

At the PLP meeting, Nick Brown said MPs should be given more time to consider the crucial legislation.

A Labour source said: "Nick said that he’s gone back with a counter offer for a way of guaranteeing that all the issues are properly debated and voted upon in a way that is fair, proper and democratic.

"He also questioned whether it would even be safe to have votes at 2.30 or 3am with 600-plus MPs trying to get home without any public transport."

Mr Brown also warned there would be "repercussions" if the Government proceeded with its plan to force the bill through in half a day.

A spokesman for the Prime Minister said: "We've been clear all along that there will be time for debate on this topic. It has already been discussed at length in the House of Commons and House of Lords."

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