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British PM fends off Brexit parliamentary defeat

14 June 2018

British Prime Minister Theresa May faces a knife-edge vote in parliament on June 12 on her centrepiece Brexit legislation, despite her last-minute warning that defeat risks undermining her negotiations with Brussels.

"When the Government is able to set out an achievable, clearly defined path, one that has been properly considered, whose implications have been foreseen, and that is rooted in reality and evidence, not dreams and dogma, it should go to the people, once again, to seek their confirmation", he wrote.

74 Labour MPs rebelled to vote against disagreeing with the Lords EEA amendment and 15 rebelled to vote with the Government in agreeing to reject the Lords EEA amendment.

- PM avoids damaging "meaningful vote" defeat through new concessions. Caroline Flint added her voice, saying her constituents have been "insulted" by people who favor the continued free movement of labor.

"If Brexit is worth doing, then it is certainly worth doing well; regardless of how long that takes", he said. "It is, however, irresponsible to proceed as we are".

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A Downing Street source said: "We will get a good Brexit deal that works for everybody in the UK".

Lawmakers supported the government's position to reject amendments to the EU withdrawal bill that challenged May's commitment to leave the bloc's customs union and single market, leaving the overall shape of her Brexit strategy intact that will transform Britain's trading relationships for decades.

Labour's Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer said that the only reason May's government had decided on a climb down was because 'they thought they were going to lose the vote'.

One Tory Leaver said: "We need to know more about what exactly the prime minister has told the rebels".

But, the pro-EU MPs' version of what they were promised appears to differ from what they government says it offered, threatening to reignite the dispute and reviving the possibility of a revolt that would badly damage May's authority.

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"I am confident I can get a deal that allows us to strike our own trade deals while having a border with the European Union which is as frictionless as possible", she said.

Asked on BBC Radio 4's Today programme what would happen under Government plans if MPs voted against the deal eventually secured by Mrs May, Mr Davis said: "If they throw it out, well, they throw it out".

It won over most of the rebels, but was openly mocked by Ken Clarke, a veteran Conservative who has run at least six government departments, who accused the government of using "pathetic" jargon which was "utterly meaningless".

"Grieve's amendment puts that right and in a way Govt could and should accept it". "I am trying to negotiate the best deal for Britain".

Remainers met privately with Theresa May yesterday afternoon, minutes before voting to back the government on the EU Withdrawal Bill after it was felt the Prime Minister had made significant enough concessions.

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She had already agreed to give MPs a vote on the final Brexit deal, but rejecting it could see Britain crash out of the European Union with no agreement. This might convince some wavering "rebels" to back the government in order to save May and prevent Boris Johnson, the current foreign secretary and a leading so-called "Brexiteer", from seeking to replace her.

British PM fends off Brexit parliamentary defeat