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What You Should Know About The Brexit Amendments Tabled By MPs

The Commons will vote on a series of amendments to the Government motion on Wednesday evening.

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The Commons will vote on a series of amendments to the Government motion on Wednesday evening.

Guides

What You Should Know About The Brexit Amendments Tabled By MPs

The Commons will vote on a series of amendments to the Government motion on Wednesday evening.

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MPs will be given another chance to vote on the Government’s negotiating strategy for Brexit on Wednesday night.

The Commons will vote on a series of amendments to the Government motion ahead of another “meaningful vote” on Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement next month.

It will be down to Speaker John Bercow which proposals are selected for a vote.

John Bercow

John Bercow (House of Commons/PA)

Any successful amendments will not have the force of law but will carry heavy political weight as a signal to Downing Street and Brussels of what kind of Brexit MPs are likely to approve.

Here’s a look at the key amendments:

Costa

Tory backbencher Alberto Costa is demanding Mrs May seeks a treaty on citizens’ rights after Brexit. Home Secretary Sajid Javid has said the Government backs his amendment.

His amendment, which has the backing of more than 140 MPs from across the House, including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, calls for a separate agreement with the European Union to protect the rights of expats even if there is a no-deal Brexit.

Cooper

Labour former minister Yvette Cooper has tabled an amendment seeking to pin the Prime Minister down to the commitments she made to the Commons on Tuesday.

Mrs May offered MPs a chance to vote to delay Brexit if her deal is rejected again next month, in a move which closely matched demands put forward in a plan by Ms Cooper and Tory Sir Oliver Letwin.

While Sir Oliver said there was now “no need” for the Cooper/Letwin Bill, Ms Cooper said she would lay a cross-party amendment to secure confirmation of the Prime Minister’s commitment.

Spelman/Dromey

Conservative MP Dame Caroline Spelman and Labour’s Jack Dromey, who last month tabled a successful amendment opposing a no-deal Brexit, have tabled an amendment to “pave the way” for the Cooper/Letwin Bill to give MPs the opportunity to extend the two-year Article 50 negotiation process.

Jack Dromey and Caroline Spelman

Jack Dromey and Caroline Spelman last month tabled a successful amendment opposing a no-deal Brexit (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

The pair said they would seek assurances from ministers to secure confirmation of the Prime Minister’s commitments during the debate on Wednesday.

They said if they receive the assurances they will not push the amendment to a vote.

Indicative votes

A second amendment tabled by Dame Caroline and Mr Dromey would require MPs to be given an opportunity to vote on March 19 on a range of alternative Brexit outcomes.

Labour

Jeremy Corbyn’s amendment seeks support for his party’s five Brexit demands.

jeremy corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn (Aaron Chown/PA)

The party is calling for a permanent and comprehensive customs union with the EU; dynamic alignment on rights and protections; commitments on participation in EU agencies and funding programmes; “unambiguous” agreements on the detail of future security arrangements; and close alignment with the single market.

Liberal Democrats have tagged their own amendment on to Mr Corbyn’s proposals, calling for an extension of Article 50 to provide time for a referendum.

Independent Group

MPs from The Independent Group (TIG), with support from the SNP, Liberal Democrats and Plaid Cymru, have tabled an amendment to pave the way for a second referendum.

It would instruct the Prime Minister to table a motion for debate and a decision before March 8, setting out the steps to prepare for a public vote on whether to leave the EU on terms agreed by Parliament or remain a member.

TIG member Chris Leslie said the amendment would require Mrs May to “take the steps needed now so the public could take control and break through the Brexit gridlock”.

Liberal Democrats

Backed by some Labour and Independent MPs, Sir Vince Cable’s party is calling on the Government to create a Brexit Support Fund of at least £7.5 billion to mitigate job losses caused by uncertainty over EU withdrawal, a no-deal Brexit or the PM’s deal.

SNP

The SNP’s amendment requires the PM to immediately rule out a no-deal Brexit “under any and all circumstances” and regardless of exit date.

The party’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford said Parliament must take control and “force the UK Government to do the right thing by immediately ruling out a no-deal Brexit under any and all circumstances”.

Revoke Article 50

An amendment tabled by the SNP’s Angus MacNeil and backed by Father of the House Kenneth Clarke calls on Parliament to bring forward legislation to require Theresa May to halt Brexit by revoking the Article 50 letter informing the European Council of the UK’s intention to leave.

Green

Green MP Caroline Lucas has tabled an amendment, backed by MPs from several parties, calling for environmental protections to be prioritised in future relations with the EU.

Plaid Cymru

An amendment from the Welsh nationalist party calls on the Government to extend the period for Brexit negotiations to the end of 2021.

Keep no deal on the table

An amendment tabled by Tory backbencher John Baron seeks to make clear that an extension to Article 50 “cannot take no deal off the table”.

Harriet Line is Press Association Political Correspondent

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What You Should Know About The Brexit Amendments Tabled By MPs

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