British Justice Minister Phillip Lee Dramatically Resigns over Brexit Handling

British Justice Minister Phillip Lee Dramatically Resigns over Brexit Handling

MPs will vote again on the issue later in the summer.

A Tory Remain rebel has warned Theresa May that "if she f**ks us, she's f**ked, ' after Conservative MPs were given assurances by the prime minister that a compromise Brexit amendment to the 'meaningful vote" will be upheld.

MPs voted by 324 to 298 to reject a House of Lords amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill which would have given MPs the power to tell the Prime Minister to go back and renegotiate the Brexit deal.

However, although the prime minister was spared the complication and embarrassment of defeats of Wednesday, issues like customs are set to be revisited in a few weeks time when more Brexit-related legislation is put to MPs.

"But the message we send to the country through our votes this week is important".

One amendment in danger of not being overturned on Tuesday is on the so-called meaningful vote, which would give parliament the power to decide what to do if it rejects the final Brexit deal.

May said the government would amend the bill to address legislators' concerns, but warned that "I can not countenance Parliament being able to overturn the will of the British people".

Pro-EU lawmakers threatened on Wednesday to withdraw their support for Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit strategy if she does not follow through on concessions they thought they had been promised.

Labour MP Chuka Umunna was among the rebels who defied a three-line whip and voted for the amendment.

Frank Field, a veteran lawmaker from the northwest of England, was his first victim after suggesting the point of the amendment Pennycook was backing was to stop Brexit, then Gareth Snell, who represents Stoke-on-Trent in the Midlands, got the same treatment for making a similar point. The government says leaving the customs union will free the country to strike trade deals around the world.

May's minority Conservative government relies on the support of Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party for a slender working majority in the 650-member Commons.

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This amendment had looked unsafe for the prime minister.

Underlining the fear that some of her Conservatives could vote against the government, May addressed her own lawmakers at a meeting of its 1922 Committee in a last-ditch appeal for them to unite around her plans to leave the EU. "So we are partway through discussions and there is more to come", she said.

He confirmed that ministers will seek to overturn 14 amendments which he said would undermine the objective of the Bill and fail to respect the result of the 2016 referendum.

The European Economic Area amendment seeks to keep Britain in the European single market via membership of the EEA after it has left the EU - also known as the Norway model.

It was Labour divisions that were exposed on Wednesday by votes on the EEA plan.

Corbyn instructed his MPs to abstain on the amendment, meaning they should neither vote for or against it.

Chuka Umunna, a pro-EU colleague, told lawmakers that opposition to immigration should be met "in a Labour way" - as it was when some of the party's working-class base objected to immigrants from the Caribbean and Africa in the 1960s.

Laura Smith resigned from her junior shadow cabinet role in the run-up to the vote.

But five parliamentary private secretaries (PPS) voted in favour of the EEA amendment; Ged Killen, Ellie Reeves, Tonia Antoniazzi, Anna McMorrin and Rosie Duffield, with all but Ms Duffield announcing their resignation before the vote.

"The Labour Party respects the outcome of the European Union referendum and does not support the EEA or Norway model as it is not the right for option for Britain".

However, Labour MPs from Leave-voting seats - like Caroline Flint and Gareth Snell - have warned Corbyn that an EEA-style Brexit would not respect the wishes of Leave voters.

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