Brexit: PM in new battle after Commons vote defeat

Boris Johnson faces a new battle in the Commons after his first vote as PM saw him lose to rebel Tories and opposition MPs who object to a no-deal Brexit.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson suffered a major defeat in Parliament on Tuesday night as rebellious lawmakers voted to seize control of the Brexit agenda. The prime minister immediately said he would call for a new general election.

According to BBC News, Boris Johnson faces a new battle in the Commons after his first vote as PM saw him lose to rebel Tories and opposition MPs who object to a no-deal Brexit.

The Commons voted 328 to 301 to take control of the agenda, allowing them to bring a bill requesting a Brexit delay.

The PM said he would call for a general election if he was forced to request an extension to the 31 October deadline.

MPs will now vote on the Brexit delay bill. If it passes, the vote on whether to hold an election will follow.

Wednesday in the Commons will also see Chancellor Sajid Javid outline the government's spending plans, with the health service, education and the police expected to fare well.

Speaking late on Tuesday to a packed House of Commons, the prime minister said the MPs' bill would "hand control" of Brexit negotiations to the EU and bring "more dither, more delay, more confusion".

He told MPs he had no choice but to press ahead with efforts to call an October election, adding: "The people of this country will have to choose."

The BBC understands the government intends to hold an election on 15 October, two days before a crucial EU summit in Brussels. This is a day later than the BBC was previously reporting.

Jeremy Corbyn said the bill needed to be passed to take the no-deal option completely "off the table" before his party would support the call for a general election.

Shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon said he did not trust Boris Johnson not to call an election for mid-October and then change the date afterwards.

He said the prime minister could "change the date so that during the general election campaign we crash out of the European Union with a no deal".

Under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act, a prime minister must have the backing of at least two-thirds of MPs before a general election can be called outside of the fixed five-year terms.

Downing Street said the 21 Tory MPs who rebelled in Tuesday's vote would have the whip removed, effectively expelling them from the parliamentary party and meaning they could not stand as Conservative candidates in the election.

 

 

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