TORY PM Theresa May hotfooted off to Brussels yesterday to beg the EU for concessions after ‘postponing’ the vote on her Brexit deal on Monday, after it became clear that she was going to be monumentally defeated.
However, yesterday morning President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Junker made his position crystal clear: ‘The deal we have achieved, is the best deal possible, it is the only deal possible. There is no room whatsoever for renegotiation.’
The European Parliament’s Brexit point man, Guy Verhofstadt, said that with the cancelled vote in London: ‘We have spiralled again into a new mess.’ He added: ‘It is out of the question to renegotiate the backstop. There can be no deal without the backstop. It’s time they make up their mind.
‘I can’t follow any more. After two years of negotiations, the Tory government wants to delay the vote. Just keep in mind that we will never let the Irish down.’
Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn secured an emergency debate on the postponement of the vote on May’s deal in Parliament yesterday afternoon. He said: ‘If the government comes back with nothing but warm words, then she must immediately put her deal to the House. No more delays, no more tricks, let Parliament take control. If not then frankly Mr Speaker, she must go.’
Pete Wishart from the SNP interjected: ‘He is of course, right, this government are an absolute shambles, they have failed the country, they are in contempt of Parliament. Will he not do the right thing now and table a motion of no confidence in this government so we can be shot of them?’
However, Corbyn did not take him up on his offer saying that it was not the ‘appropriate time’. He said: ‘I have tabled this motion today which the member supported the tabling of, we have no confidence in this government. We need to do the appropriate thing at the appropriate time, to have a motion of no confidence in this government in order to get rid of this government.’
Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington said: ‘The point that has been made by the Leader of the opposition is that there is a wish in the House to bring this matter to a head and have a definitive vote.
‘And of course it is a requirement under the EU Withdrawal Act for the meaningful vote to take place before the government is able to recognise any deal with the European Union. The remaining stages of this debate and the votes,’ he insisted to jeers, ‘have not been cancelled but deferred.’