Brexit secretary warns rebellious MPs as key vote looms

Brexit news: Jeremy Corbyn faces revolt as five Labour MPs resign | Daily Star

On Tuesday, May averted a potentially devastating defeat by convincing the group - who were prepared to vote her down - to discuss new wording of what it would take for Parliament to grab control of the Brexit process. One said privately on Thursday that they didn't want to risk toppling May at a time when her position is already perilous.

And as May and her government have repeatedly ruled out doing anything which would threaten the integrity of the United Kingdom, then it is hard to see how this won't point towards Britain accepting anything but the softest of soft Brexits.

So the rebels might sit tight until July, when they will have another opportunity to force May to change direction and keep closer ties to the bloc.

What's at stake here is how much power Parliament has in the final phase of Brexit.

The government says the United Kingdom will leave the bloc's customs union, but many businesses fear that will mean tariffs or other barriers to British goods in Europe.

Dr Lee said he could not "look his children in the eye" and support the way Brexit is "currently being delivered".

After the vote, a Brexit department spokesman said: "We have not, and will not, agree to the House of Commons binding the government's hands in the negotiation".

"Our policy is to leave the customs union so that we can conduct our own independent trade policy but it would be appropriate that we have an arrangement in place with the European Union", he said.

However flabbily drafted the clause may be, defeat for the government would send a strong signal that Parliament doesn't back the negotiating goals May is pursuing.

May met with more than a dozen Tory would-be rebels shortly before the vote to reassure them, although exactly what she promised is in dispute.

It was a second win for May after she persuaded rebels in her Conservative party on Tuesday to reject a Lords amendment that would have allowed parliament to block the government from leaving the European Union with no deal.

May has said that no deal is better than a bad deal.

Earlier on Tuesday the government suffered a setback as one minister resigned over what he called the government's plans to "limit" the role of parliament in shaping Brexit.

The most contentious was the bid to give Parliament the power to tell the government what to do if the Brexit deal was voted down or no agreement was reached.

Details of precisely what this will involve could emerge in the coming days when the EU Withdrawal bill is due to return to the House of Lords.

Perhaps the most significant compromise from Mrs May was on what happens if there's no deal.

Two more contentious bills - on trade and customs - are set to be debated before parliament breaks off for its summer recess, and pro-EU rebels are poised for a series of fresh confrontations, including over membership of the customs union.

"Theresa May doesn't need the support of the DUP anymore because she can always rely on Manchester's Jeff Smith to whip the Labour party in line with her".

A third part of Grieve's amendment, which the government has not agreed to discuss and is likely to resist, would hand control of the Brexit negotiations to parliament if an exit deal has not been agreed by February 15 next year. The amendment is signed by 12 Conservatives.

The party's leadership argues that the move would not respect the spirit of the Brexit referendum result and leave Britain with no say over the rules it would have to follow. So the amendment doesn't look likely to pass.

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