Parliament will have 2019 vote on final Brexit deal, Davis offers

15 November, 2017, 01:59 | Author: Martin Tyler
  • Nigel Farage and Michel Barnier

On the eve of the debate, the government made an apparent concession to rebels by promising a separate piece of legislation that would allow parliament to have a binding vote on any Brexit agreement. Lawmakers from both main parties have been pushing for Parliament to have a greater say in the process, with some tabling amendments to the government's Brexit bill that aim to prevent Britain tumbling out of the trading bloc without a deal.

But it triggered an immediate backlash from potential Tory rebels.

The government said it wants an implementation period of around two years after Brexit to stop an economically damaging "cliff-edge" - but insists Britain will be fully out of the EU.

"It is crucial that this meaningful vote takes place well before we leave, that defeat for the Government's legislation will not imply leaving the European Union with no deal, and that Parliament has the same role in the event of a disastrous "no deal" outcome".

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"I can now confirm that once we have reached an agreement we will bring forward a specific piece of primary legislation to implement the agreement".

"Parliament could do nothing at all to shape the nature of that withdrawal agreement".

Brexit Secretary David Davis said the terms of the UK's exit, such as money, citizen rights and any transition must become law via a new Act of Parliament, BBC reported on Monday.

Tory backbencher Heidi Allen branded Mr Davis's plan "pointless" as she also highlighted the Government's intention to alter legislation to state Britain's membership of the European Union will formally end at 11pm on 29 March, 2019.

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The Brexit date of March 29, 2019 is also set to be enshrined in law as part of the withdrawal bill, in a move announced by May last week.

But critics warn the EU Withdrawal Bill - also known as the Repeal Bill - represents a power-grab by ministers, while others see the legislation as a chance to shape May's Brexit policy.

Fellow Conservative MP Antoinette Sandbach similarly labelled the Government's promise "meaningless" should Brexit talks slip beyond March 2019.

He said the bill must be amended "to provide for a proper, not a fake, meaningful vote before any exit day".

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Labour's shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer branded Mr Davis's actions "a significant climbdown from a weak Government on the verge of defeat".

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