May loses vote on Brexit legal advice

May loses vote on Brexit legal advice

MPs are debating whether the Prime Minister failed to comply with a binding Commons vote that required the government to publish attorney general Geoffrey Cox's full legal advice on Mrs May's Brexit deal.

In the wake of the vote, Leader of the House of Commons, Andrea Leadsom, said the government would provide the full advice to the Parliament on Wednesday, despite earlier arguing it would imperil its negotiating position in Brussels in future discussions on the post-Brexit relationship and trade deal.

They hope this will allow parliament to express its support for alternative approaches - and prevent the government either hurtling towards a no-deal Brexit without the backing of MPs, or imposing a plan B of its own devising.

The move came as Theresa May prepared to sell her Brexit agreement to MPs at the start of five days of debate on the agreement struck with the EU.

The vote was passed by a majority of 22 in the House of Commons on Tuesday.

"Never before has the House of Commons found Ministers in contempt of Parliament".

This is a far greater concern for No 10 than sanctioning of the government or a minister for contempt, which helps explain why the prime minister has deployed leading Brexiteers Mr Cox and Michael Gove, the environment secretary, in the past two days to try and sell her imperfect deal to Brexiteer MPs.

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The Government said after the vote that it would now publish the full advice. Opposition parties say their representatives will vote against the deal, and so have dozens of lawmakers from May's Conservative Party. But defeat would increase the chances of a "no-deal" exit, which could mean chaos for Britain's economy and businesses, and put May under fierce pressure to resign.

May is battling to persuade lawmakers to support the divorce agreement she has sealed with the European Union when the House of Commons votes on December 11.

In yet another blow to Theresa May's Brexit plans, MPs voted on Tuesday in favour of getting a "meaningful vote" if the Prime Minister's proposals are voted down.

It lost that vote by 311 votes to 307.

Sky sources have been told that Mr Cox's legal advice concludes that the European Court of Justice would not in practice force the United Kingdom to stay in the backstop against its will if a case was brought by the government.

Subsequently, Cable returned to levels near that of mid-2017 around 1.2676 and is poised to close below 1.27 for the first time in four months.

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