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This is what MPs are voting on in the latest Brexit showdown

Politics | Published:

Speaker John Bercow has selected four amendments but not all of them will necessarily be pushed to a vote

Brexit

MPs are being asked to vote on a motion tabled by Theresa May which would authorise the Prime Minister to seek an extension of the two-year Article 50 negotiations, delaying Brexit beyond March 29.

Mrs May’s motion says that if the House of Commons has approved her Withdrawal Agreement and the framework for the future UK/EU relationship by March 20, she will seek a one-off extension until June 30 to allow time for the necessary legislation to be passed.

Mrs May has granted Conservative MPs a free vote.

If her deal fails to win Commons support, the motion warns it is “highly likely” the EU will require the UK to set out a “clear purpose” before granting any extension and that any delay beyond June 30 will involve Britain taking part in May’s elections to the European Parliament.

Speaker John Bercow has selected four amendments – and one amendment to an amendment – for debate, but not all of them will necessarily be pushed to a vote at 5pm.

Commons Speaker John Bercow
Commons Speaker John Bercow (House of Commons/PA)

The selected amendments, in the order in which they will be voted on, are:

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– Second referendum

Tabled by Independent Group MP Sarah Wollaston and backed by members of the new grouping, Liberal Democrats and a handful from other parties, this amendment seeks an Article 50 extension to stage a second referendum with Remain and Parliament’s preferred Brexit option on the ballot paper.

Sarah Wollaston
Sarah Wollaston (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Indicative votes

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Tabled by a cross-party group led by Labour’s Hilary Benn and Yvette Cooper and Tory Sir Oliver Letwin, this would allow Parliament to take control of business in the Commons on March 20 to force a series of indicative votes to establish MPs’ preferred option for Brexit.

An amendment to the “indicative votes” plan, tabled by Labour’s Lucy Powell,  would limit to June 30 any extension of Brexit talks to discuss Parliament’s preferred option.

Labour

Labour’s amendment notes that Parliament has “decisively” rejected both Mrs May’s deal and no deal and calls for a delay to Brexit “to provide parliamentary time for this House to find a majority for a different approach”.

Jeremy Corbyn
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn (House of Commons/PA)

– Block the “meaningful vote”

An amendment tabled by Labour’s Chris Bryant challenges Theresa May’s right under parliamentary rules to bring her Withdrawal Agreement back before the Commons for a third “meaningful vote”, after it was rejected by a majority of 230 in January and 149 this week.

The vote on Mrs May’s proposals will take place at the end of the sequence, with MPs voting on the PM’s motion “as amended” if any of the amendments have secured a majority.

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