MPs yesterday voted by 309-298 against a Labour-moved motion that sought to prevent a no-deal Brexit on October 31!
The Labour-led plan was to force a vote to give MPs control of the timetable on 25 June, so MPs would be able to introduce legislation to make leaving the EU without a deal illegal.
The plan exploded in the faces of the movers.
Labour said that if the motion passed, MPs would be able to introduce legislation on June 25th to ban a no-deal scenario at the end of October.
Labour’s Brexit spokesman Sir Keir Starmer, moving the motion, said MPs ‘cannot be bystanders’.
The legislation would make it illegal to leave the EU unless it has the approval of Parliament.
‘We are taking this latest measure to end the uncertainty and protect communities across the country,’ said Starmer.
The motion had cross-party backing, including from one Tory MP – Sir Oliver Letwin – who is supporting Michael Gove in the leadership contest.
It was signed by Jeremy Corbyn, SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford, Lib Dem leader Sir Vince Cable, Change UK leader Anna Soubry, Plaid Cymru Westminster leader Liz Saville-Roberts and former Green Party leader Caroline Lucas.
The resolution requires that ‘Standing Order No 14 (which provides that government business shall have precedence at every sitting save as provided in that order) shall not apply;
b That precedence shall be given to a motion resting to the business of the House in connection with matters related to the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union;
c If more than one motion relating to the business of the House is tabled the Speaker shall decide which motion shall have precedence;
d The speaker shall interrupt proceedings on any business.’
Labour’s shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer, speaking on behalf of Labour leader Corbyn, said that the motion was a ‘safety valve’ designed to ensure Parliament ‘cannot be locked out of the Brexit process’ in the coming months.
It would allow Parliament to push back against a new prime minister ‘foolish enough’ to pursue a no-deal Brexit without Parliament’s consent.
Fear of a massive working class reaction to a sell-out spurred a number of Labour MPs to break ranks with Starmer!