Government considering move on workers' rights to win Brexit deal support

Government considering move on workers' rights to win Brexit deal support

As Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visits Britain on Thursday, Clark also said of Japanese businesses: "We need to resolve this concern, this very real concern that they have of us crashing out on March 29". It states that if May loses the vote next week, she must explain her next steps within three parliamentary sitting days - by the latest, Monday January 21.

The blow to the Prime Minister came less than a day after Conservative rebels defied the orders of their party to push through an amendment created to frustrate a no-deal Brexit.

Lawmakers voted 308-297 on Wednesday in favour of demanding the government come up with an alternative plan within three working days after the January 15 vote, rather than a planned 21-day limit.

The amendment was passed by a votes of 308 to 297 following stormy scenes in which a series of Conservative MPs castigated the Speaker, John Bercow, for allowing the amendment.

Responding to the vote, Brexit minister Stephen Barclay told parliament it was the government's intention to act quickly if it lost Tuesday's vote. "It´s simply not viable, for so many practical reasons", he told the Commons.

Shinzo Abe pledged "total support" for the withdrawal agreement she has negotiated with the European Union, which faces a crunch vote in the Commons on Tuesday.

Leading figures in the People's Vote campaign have said it will be up to Parliament to decide what the question is if there is another referendum.

He pitched Labour's alternative plan for a "sensible Brexit deal" to unite the UK's population, shooing away immediate ideas for a second referendum.

Losing the vote would deepen uncertainty over the future of Brexit, Britain's biggest shift in foreign and trade policy for more than 40 years.


It highlighted that if parliament does not agree with Mrs May then it must immediately outline its plan to avert a no deal and secure British jobs.

He has re-framed the Brexit debate by saying it's "a version" of her deal or - probably - no Brexit, because he thinks parliament would find a way to block a no-deal Brexit and won't be able to rally around an alternative Brexit.

In an effort to assuage MPs concerns, May has lobbied her European counterparts and officials in Brussels to make concessions on the clause.

The withdrawal agreement between the United Kingdom and European Union - covering things like the "divorce bill", expat citizens' rights and a 20-month transition period - will only come into force if MPs back it in a vote. The proposal was first put forward in December to try to win over sceptics, but given a cool reception.

The DUP's Brexit spokesman Sammy Wilson said: "The only thing which could swing the DUP round is if the backstop as it applies to the United Kingdom as a whole or to Northern Ireland specifically were removed from this agreement".

Earlier, in Prime Minister's Questions, Jeremy Corbyn urged Mrs May to accept the will of the House as expressed in Tuesday's vote and rule out a no-deal Brexit.

But a Conservative MP who had been expected to reject the deal, George Freeman, said during Thursday's debate that he would now back it "with a heavy heart" because, he said, the prospect of leaving without a deal was "unconscionable".

"I am committed to getting the best outcome for this country, which is supporting the prime minister's deal".

The de-facto deputy Prime Minister, David Lidington, said the only way to avoid a disruptive no-deal "is for Parliament to endorse and ratify a deal". The government needs 318 votes to get a deal through the 650-seat House of Commons, as seven members of Irish nationalist party Sinn Fein do not sit, four speakers and deputy speakers do not vote and the four tellers are not counted.

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