MPs have rejected Theresa May’s Brexit motion tonight, as well Labour’s demand for an early ‘meaningful vote’ on her deal.
The defeat of the government’s motion arguably makes it harder for May to secure further concessions from Brussels – throwing even more confusion into the Brexit debate.
Labour’s amendment would have imposed a deadline of 27th February for the government to hold a meaningful vote on their deal, or give MPs control over the Brexit process.
The votes tonight reflected internal divisions within the Labour Party, with four Brexiteer Labour MPs backing the government’s Brexit motion and 41 rebels backing the SNP’s call for a year-long extension of Article 50.
Just three motions were selected for debate by Speaker Bercow. See the full list of votes below.
Amendment A: Meaningful vote by February 27th
The Labour leadership’s amendment to the PM’s Brexit statement would have forced a vote on the withdrawal deal by the 27th February. Failing that, parliament would have been able to determine what happened next.
MPs rejected it by 322 votes to 306.
There were no Labour rebels.
Amendment i: Extending Article 50
Amendment i, tabled by the SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford, demanded that the government extend Article 50 to avoid ‘no deal’. The Lib Dems also backed the amendment.
The amendment would have led to a significant delay to Brexit, requesting an extension of Article 50 to “no fewer than three months from 29 March 2019”.
MPs rejected it by 315 votes to 93.
It was backed by a significant number of Labour MPs.
More Labour MPs voted for the SNP amendment to extend Article 50 than there are SNP MPs: pic.twitter.com/5hqgJMHfny
— Faisal Islam (@faisalislam) February 14, 2019
Full list of the 41 Labour rebels who backed the SNP amendment:
- Debbie Abrahams
- Tonia Antoniazzi
- Luciana Berger
- Ben Bradshaw
- Karen Buck
- Ruth Cadbury
- Ann Clwyd
- Ann Coffey
- Neil Coyle
- Mary Creagh
- Stella Creasy
- Janet Daby
- Geraint Davies
- Rosie Duffield
- Paul Farrelly
- Mike Gapes
- Kate Green
- Helen Hayes
- Meg Hillier
- Dame Margaret Hodge
- Susan Elan Jones
- Ged Killen
- David Lammy
- Chris Leslie
- Anna McMorrin
- Madeleine Moon
- Ian Murray
- Albert Owen
- Barry Sheerman
- Gavin Shuker
- Andy Slaughter
- Angela Smith
- Owen Smith
- Jo Stevens
- Gareth Thomas
- Chuka Umunna
- Keith Vaz
- Catherine West
- Martin Whitfield
- Dr Paul Williams
- Daniel Zeichner
Amendment E: Impact assessment motion (withdrawn)
MPs were due to vote on Remainer Tory MP Anna Soubry’s motion demanding the government publish its no deal impact assessments. It had significant cross-party support.
The amendment stated that, within seven days, the government must “publish in full the most recent official briefing document, relating to business and trade, on the implications of a no-deal Brexit presented to cabinet.”
But the MP withdrew the motion, after Brexit minister Chris Heaton-Harris said he was happy to meet with her, find the information she was seeking and publish it.
Anna Soubry welcomed the offer, noting that she could bring her demand back to parliament if the government did not make good on their offer.
As reported earlier, if Soubry’s amendment had passed, the government would have avoided a fresh vote on its statement.
Government’s Brexit motion
The government’s motion read: “That this House welcomes the Prime Minister’s statement of 12 February 2019; reiterates its support for the approach to leaving the EU expressed by this House on 29 January 2019 and notes that discussions between the UK and the EU on the Northern Ireland backstop are ongoing.”
MPs rejected it by 303 votes to 258.
It was defeated by a majority of 45, resulting in another resounding defeat for the government.
Four Labour MPs backed the government’s Brexit motion:
- Ian Austin
- Kevin Barron
- Jim Fitzpatrick
- John Mann
14 Labour MPs broke the whip to reject the Labour leadership’s Brexit amendment on 29th January, including the four who rebelled on Thursday night.
The PM’s 12th February statement was successfully amended by Labour to take no deal off the table – a move that was unacceptable for the Tory right.
That meant the Tory European Research Group abstained this evening, clearing the way for the government’s defeat.
Theresa May was not in the chamber to respond to the defeat. Jeremy Corbyn said: “It’s surprising that the Prime Minister is not even here to hear the result of the vote.”
Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer said “parliament must decide what happens next”, avoiding mention of a fresh referendum:
The Prime Minister’s Brexit strategy has once again been defeated. She can no longer claim to have a ‘substantial and sustainable majority’ in Parliament.
We can’t go on like this. Parliament must decide what happens next. https://t.co/ts092D1MiT
— Keir Starmer (@Keir_Starmer) February 14, 2019
You can read the full list of amendments including their backers here.
See the full list of Labour rebels from the Brexit votes on the 29th January.
Josiah Mortimer is covering Sienna Rodgers while she is away.