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British MPs deal May stinging rebuke on Brexit

British MPs deal May stinging rebuke on Brexit

LONDON: Britain’s government suffered a stinging rebuke from MPs ahead of Tuesday’s momentous Brexit debate, exposing Prime Minister The­r­e­sa May’s lack of support in parliament.

The House of Commons voted 311-293 to censure the government for failing to publish its full legal advice about the divorce deal May struck last month with the European Union.

The outcome forced May’s team to promise to release the full tome ahead of next Tuesday’s vote on the contentious Brexit agreement.

The rebuke underscores the struggles May faces as she tries to keep Britain from crashing out of the world’s largest single market in March without any firm trade arrangements.

The government suffered another blow just one hour later when parliament also voted in favour of an amendment that will give greater decision-making powers to MPs if, as expected, May’s deal is voted down next week.

Downing Street argued that May’s government had a right to receive confidential opinions that were unhampered by political considerations. “The government is upholding an important point of principle,” the prime minister’s spokesman said.

Yet the text’s full publication is unlikely to impact a Brexit deal vote that faces resistance from all sides of a bickering House of Commons.

Published in Dawn, December 5th, 2018

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