Labour to lead cross-party bid to rule out no-deal Brexit by seizing Commons agenda

Posted On: 
11th June 2019

Labour is to lead a cross-party bid to rule out a no-deal Brexit by seizing control of the Commons agenda.

Keir Starmer said MPs "cannot be bystanders" as some Tory leadership hopefuls consider railing a no-deal brexit through
Credit: 
PA Images

Under the plan, MPs would be given the chance to introduce legislation on 25 June which would rule out the possibility of quitting the EU without a withdrawal agreement in place.

The Commons will vote on the move - which also has the backing of the SNP, Plaid Cymru, the Lib Dems, the Greens and Tory MP Oliver Letwin - on Wednesday.

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Britain is currently scheduled to leave the EU on 31 October, and the question of whether a no-deal Brexit should happen has dominated the Tory leadership race.

Matt Hancock has insisted Parliament would block such an outcome, while others have refused to rule out shutting Parliament down altogether to ensure it happens.

Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer said: “The debate on Brexit in the Tory leadership contest has descended into the disturbing, the ludicrous and the reckless.

“None of the likely candidates for the top job has a credible plan for how to break the deadlock before the end of October.

"Instead, we have witnessed candidates openly advocating a damaging no deal Brexit and even proposing dragging the Queen into politics by asking her to shut down Parliament to achieve this.

“MPs cannot be bystanders while the next Tory Prime Minister tries to crash the UK out of the European Union without a deal and without the consent of the British people.

"That’s why we are taking this latest measure to end the uncertainty and protect communities across the country. 

“My challenge to MPs who disagree either with a no deal Brexit or proroguing Parliament is to back this motion and act in the national interest.”

MPs say the 25 June date would allow them enough time to kick off the process ahead of the announcement of the new Tory leader and PM, expected in late July, and in advance of the summer recess.

Senior Tory figures, including Theresa May, Philip Hammond and leadership hopeful Matt Hancock have each spoken out against forcing a no-deal exit against the wishes of Parliament.