Published On: Wed, Sep 4th, 2019

Brexit news: Sir Bill Cash and IDS unveil key point in Remainer bill giving EU control | UK | News

The pair of prominent Brexiteers highlighted a clause in the Remainers’ bill, tabled by Labour MP Hillary Benn, which would allow the to propose an extension to the process until any date other than 31 January – a proposal which the Government would have no choice but to accept under the anti-no deal legislation. The clause would only come into force if a majority of MPs in Parliament voted in favour of such an extension – a condition which Sir Bill Cash claimed to be unlikely to not materialise. 

Blasting opposition MPs over the controversial clause, Sir Bill said: “This is just another example of the kind of obfuscation this bill provides in almost every clause.

“And it’s not just obfuscation, it’s actually driving coach and horses for the way by which we should be governed and the way we have been governed.”

Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith also pointed out the clause would be conditional upon the European Union making a “conditional offer” to the UK in its proposition of a new extension date – a move that would give the EU full control on the proceedings.

He explained: “Also, in Section 3, it assumes that the EU would in some way make a conditional offer.

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“But the EU is in control of whether it makes any kind of offer and conditional or not.

“This bill, therefore, hinges on the EU’s ability or desire to do that which, of course, probably won’t happen.”

The clause read: “If the European Council decides to agree an extension of the period in article 50(3) of the Treaty on European Union ending at 11.00om on 31 October 209, but to a date other than 11.00pm on 31 January 2020, the Prime Minister must, within a period of two days beginning with the end of the day on which the European Council’s decision is made, or before the end of 30 October 2019, whichever is sooner, notify the President of the European Council that the United Kingdom agrees to the proposed extension.”

Tory rebels and opposition MPs again voted against the Government by 327/299 with a majority of 28 to block a no deal scenario.

The ballot is yet another set back for an embattled Mr Johnson in his quest to deliver Brexit “do or die” by October 31, as promised in his speech when he took office as Prime Minister six weeks ago.

Addressing MPs in the Commons on the aftermath of his second parliamentary defeat,  branded the bill “without precedents in the House”.

He claimed the legislation passed by the Commons will force him to “surrender” to the European Union in the Brexit negotiations, which he believes have now effectively ended.

Listing the problems with the legislation, he said: “The House of Commons has passed a bill devised by the leader of the opposition who I see is not in his place. As he is characteristically evasive if not frit.

“It’s a bill that effectively ends the negotiations.

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“A bill that demands an extension until at least next year and perhaps for many more years to come.

“A bill that insists Britain acquiesce to the demands of Brussels and hands control to our partners.

“A bill designed to overturn the biggest democratic vote in our history, the 2016 referendum.

“And it’s, therefore, a bill without precedents in the history of this House, seeking as it does to force the Prime Minister with a pre-drafted letter to surrender in international negotiations.”

MPs will vote on whether to have an early general election later tonight after the Prime Minister table a motion for a snap vote on October 15.

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