Brexit: Tory ‘civil war’ intensifies over changes to EU Withdrawal Bill

Theresa May has postponed next week’s crucial debate on the EU Withdrawal Bill after rebellious pro-European MPs demanded hundreds of amendments.

Leader of the House Andrea Leadsom yesterday said that in addition to 300 amendments, MPs have proposed 54 new clauses.

Former Tory attorney-general Dominic Grieve is leading a group of MPs who want to reduce sweeping “Henry VIII powers” that would allow May to alter -related legislation with minimal parliamentary scrutiny.

MPs also want a vote on the final Brexit deal and assurances that devolved powers – transferred from the EU to the UK – will be passed to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The escalating opposition to the flagship Bill means May’s Brexit timetable has been “thrown into chaos” as the “Tory civil war deepens”, Business Insider reports.

Yesterday Labour claimed the legislation wasn’t being put before the House of Commons because May worried that pro-Europe Tory rebels would back the amendments.

“If Theresa May were to suffer a defeat at the hands of Labour and Tory rebels on her critical piece of Brexit legislation, it would once again call into question the credibility of her administration,” The Independent says.

The delay comes as EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier revealed a “disturbing” deadlock in Brexit negotiations, with only a year to go before the 27 EU countries are expected to start ratifying any deal.

 

 

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