Boris Johnson is facing a Brexit delay of up to three months after MPs derailed his plan to rush a deal through the Commons. Members rejected his timetable for departing the EU by 322 to 308 in a defeat that threatens to doom Mr Johnson’s “do or die” pledge to leave by October 31. The prime minister was compelled by the Benn act to ask for an extension on Saturday after MPs withheld approval for his deal until all the necessary legislation had been passed. He was preparing to appeal last night to President Macron and other EU leaders to reject the extension request.
Brexit was hurled into fresh chaos tonight after Boris Johnson lost a bid to ram his deal past MPs. The humiliated Prime Minister “paused” his Brexit deal after the House of Commons refused to accept a bid to rush it through in three days. Humbled by MPs, the Tory chief finally dropped his hardline pledge to leave on October 31 – and accepted it is now up to EU leaders to decide whether to delay.
Boris Johnson has put Britain on a general election footing after MPs thwarted his “do or die” pledge to leave the EU on Oct 31 by voting for yet another delay. The Prime Minister signalled on Tuesday night that he will scrap plans to get his Brexit deal through Parliament and instead go to the country as early as Nov 28. Downing Street said Parliament “blew its last chance” to get Britain out of the EU with a deal by Halloween when MPs rejected the Government’s tight timetable to get the legislation done in time.
Boris Johnson is set call for a general election if EU leaders grant the UK a Brexit extension until January, a Number 10 source has revealed. The Prime Minister must now wait to hear from the heads of the EU27 after his plans to fast-track legislation through the Commons hit the buffers on Tuesday night. There was anger in Downing Street after MPs rejected Mr Johnson’s plan to push through the Withdrawal Agreement Bill to approve his deal in just three days by 322 votes to 308. The result leaves the PM effectively at the mercy of EU leaders who will decide whether to grant Britain a further extension, and for how long, in order to allow it to leave with a deal.
Labour is ready to vote for a general election as soon as EU27 leaders have signed off on a Brexit extension, despite the desire of some senior party figures to secure a referendum first, the Guardian understands. Labour has twice abstained when the prime minister asked for an election under the terms of the fixed-term parliaments act, which requires a two-thirds majority. But Jeremy Corbyn has repeatedly said that once an extension was in place he would support a poll and a Labour spokesperson confirmed on Wednesday night that remained the party’s position.
BORIS Johnson last night told EU chiefs he will force a snap general election if a new Brexit delay stretches as long as three months. With next week’s October 31 Brexit deadline in disarray, the PM immediately hit the phones to Europe’s leaders. Brussels bosses began considering the length of the new delay — which Parliament asked to run until January 31. Defiant Mr Johnson insisted he would repeat his firm line that “our policy remains that we should not delay, that we should leave the EU on October 31st”.
Boris Johnson will push for a general election if the EU follows Donald Tusk’s advice to grant another Brexit delay, a No. 10 source revealed last night after MPs rejected the Prime Minister’s three-day timetable for his Brexit bill. MPs handed the fate of Brexit back to the EU after they first supported Mr Johnson’s deal but then voted against his plan to crash it through the House of Commons before the weekend. With the PM forced to pause his efforts, Mr Tusk announced that he would urge the 27 EU member states to give Britain more time, expected to run to January 31.
BORIS Johnson warned rebel MPs who effectively voted down his EU Withdrawal Bill plans tonight they had made a NO DEAL more likely. He told Parliament: “The only responsible course of action is to accelerate our preparations for a no deal outcome.” Meanwhile Number 10 has confirmed the Prime Minuster plans to push for a general election if the EU offers another extension to Article 50. Mr Johnson told the House after his defeat: “The Government must take the only responsible course of action which is to accelerate our preparations for a no deal outcome.
Jeremy Corbyn was plunged into Brexit chaos on Tuesday night as 19 rebels defied the whip to back Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal. It comes amid reports that the Labour leader has warned his MPs that they ‘cannot afford’ to turn down another general election offer. The 19 rebels voted for the second reading of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill despite threats of being deselected and thrown out of the party. The Labour leader said the PM’s deal was ‘rotten’ and ordered his MPs to vote against it as he tried to control a pro-Brexit rebellion.
JEREMY CORBYN’S Labour Party is now in meltdown as a number of the party’s MPs face de-selection in preparation for a general election. The latest victims of the party’s culling are Scottish Labour’s Ian Murray and MP for South Shields Emma Lewell-Buck. The Unite union is currently pushing to deselect Mr Murray as a candidate in the next general election, according to the BBC. The MP for Edinburgh South was Labour’s only Scottish MP between 2015 and 2017.
Jeremy Corbyn stepped up his demands for Britain to join a post-Brexit customs union with the European Union amid signs that Boris Johnson is heading for defeat on the issue if debate resumes on his withdrawal plans. The Prime Minister has repeatedly set his face against such a “soft Brexit” outcome on the basis that it would prevent the UK from negotiating trade deals around the world after the country has left the bloc. An amendment calling for a customs union was only rejected by three votes in April and supporters of the plan claim momentum has grown behind the idea in recent weeks.
JEREMY Corbyn told a private meeting of MPs last week that Labour cannot afford to turn down another election request from Boris Johnson. The Labour leader has already ordered his MPs to reject two opportunities to trigger a General Election since the start of last month as part of his attempts to prevent a No Deal Brexit. The PM may try again to get approval for a General Election as part of his bid to break the Brexit deadlock in the coming days. And in a meeting with a group of Labour MPs last week Mr Corbyn he admitted the party would be castigated by their own supporters and voters if they turned down a third request.
Boris Johnson suffered a blow on Tuesday night as the DUP announced that the Prime Minister had lost their respect and voted against his Brexit deal. After a heated debate in the House of Commons, DUP MP Sammy Wilson said: “The Prime Minister has lost my respect. Instead of owning his decision to capitulate on Northern Ireland to get his deal through in a hurry, he is implying that none of us can read the details. “It creates a border in the Irish Sea and the [DUP] will not support it,” added the MP for East Antrim.
British and Irish businesses that trade solely within the UK face a barrage of costs and red tape under Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal, the acting head of HM Revenue & Customs has warned. Addressing the Treasury select committee, Jim Harra confirmed that the new arrangements would “feel like a commercial border” in the Irish Sea, with customs declarations and potential tariffs imposed on goods moving from east to west. He said: “We don’t envisage a significant level of physical checks but that is something that could be required to give effect to EU regulatory standards.”
Leo Varadkar hailed the vote for the Brexit Bill tonight as EU leaders considered whether to back Donald Tusk’s urging for another delay to Britain’s departure. The Irish PM welcomed news that a ‘clear majority’ of MPs had backed Boris Johnson’s deal in a crucial vote. But he said he would now ‘await further developments’ on the ‘need for an extension’, after the House refused Mr Johnson’s bid to fast-track the law in time for October 31.
The British Government will face another multi-billion pound Brexit bill if it cannot complete free trade negotiations with Europe by the middle of 2020, The Telegraph has been told. EU and UK officials are bracing for a painful new financial negotiation as trade experts warn there is very little prospect of clinching a trade deal with the EU before the Brexit deal transition period expires on Dec 31 2020. The new bill, which is expected to exceed the current UK annual contributions of 10bn euros per year, will be the price of extending the Brexit transition period until the end of 2022 in order to complete a Free Trade Agreement with the EU.
British firms selling into Northern Ireland will be hit with a barrage of red tape and higher costs under Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal, government documents confirm. Analysis slipped online late tonight confirms British firms will have to fill out at least two customs forms for goods traded west across the Irish Sea. This will lead to “additional administrative costs” on goods moving from east to west – estimated at around £15 to £56 per customs declaration.
The Speaker should no longer be chairman of the body responsible for running the House of Commons, a former senior clerk has said. Lord Lisvane, who was clerk of the House between 2011 and 2014, said another MP who had experience of managing big organisations should lead the Commons Commission. He said that the Speaker was “over-freighted” by juggling his daily duties with his chairmanship of the commission, which oversees management and administration in Westminster.
JOHN BERCOW should be removed as Speaker immediately after rejecting a meaningful vote on Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal today, Express.co.uk readers have overwhelmingly demanded in an online poll. The Prime Minister had hoped to get the approval of MPs for his plans this afternoon after he abandoned the vote on Saturday when the Commons backed a move forcing him to ask the EU for a further Brexit delay.
EU leaders could be forced to hold the emergency Brexit summit none of them wanted, if reports that President Emmanuel Macron is opposing Donald Tusk’s recommendation that Brexit be delayed for three months are proved correct. The president of the European Council has said that the extension could be granted by written procedure, avoiding an EU summit in Brussels.
European leaders could endorse a new Brexit extension by the end of this week after MPs rejected Boris Johnson’s “do or die” October 31 deadline. Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, confirmed last night he was in favour of offering the UK the three-month extension that has been requested by parliament. However, the extension could end early if a deal was ratified before then.
The EU is poised to accept the prime minister’s request for a fresh Brexit delay after he paused the progress of legislation aimed at ratifying his divorce deal. Boris Johnson took the action after MPs rejected his timetable to pass the Withdrawal Agreement Bill, which is needed to put his Brexit deal into UK law. MPs voted by 322 to 308 to defeat the government’s programme motion for the bill – which set out plans for the legislation to complete its passage through the House of Commons by Thursday night.
The European Union is ready to allow a delay to Brexit if MPs demand more time to debate Boris Johnson’s withdrawal plans, Donald Tusk has indicated. Ahead of a parliamentary battle over the Brexit deal, the European Council president said its response would depend on developments in Westminster. But he signalled that an extension would be granted to avoid Britain heading for a no-deal Brexit on 31 October.
The EU is set to accept the Boris Johnson’s reluctant request for a Brexit delay up to 31 January with the option of leaving earlier after Donald Tusk said he would recommend to heads of state and government that they sign it off without need for a summit. “Following PM’s decision to pause the process of ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement, and in order to avoid a no-deal #Brexit, I will recommend the EU27 accept the UK request for an extension,” Tusk tweeted. “For this I will propose a written procedure.”
The European Union was last night gearing up to offer a Brexit ‘flextension’ until January 31 after MPs voted to put the next move into the hands of Brussels. Once the Commons rejected Boris Johnson‘s timetable to pass the deal, the Prime Minister said he would ‘pause’ the legislation while the EU decides whether to offer an extension – and for how long. It is thought EU leaders will make a decision by Monday. Theoretically, if they were to refuse, Britain could still leave without a deal next Thursday, on October 31.
THE European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator, Guy Verhofstadt, may have let slip the amount of time the EU is willing to offer Britain as an extension after the Prime Minister suffered a critical defeat in the House of Commons on Tuesday evening. Boris Johnson secured a majority in the House of Commons on his Withdrawal Agreement Bill on Tuesday, but just minutes later suffered a huge blow as MPs refused to back his accelerated timetabling plans to try to secure Brexit by October 31. Following the result of the vote, the Prime Minister said he had no option but to put his Brexit legislation on hold, and that he would “speak with member states”.
Michel Barnier has been put in charge of future negotiations with the UK after Brexit, Brussels has announced. The EU’s chief negotiator will head up a new “Task Force for Relations with the UK” that will be responsible for talks on the future relationship. His team will also oversee the finishing the Article 50 process, and any required ‘no-deal’ preparation, a spokesperson for the European Commission said on Tuesday. Mr Barnier is widely seen in Brussels as having run a successful negotiation with the UK. As chief negotiator he kept member states on board with the EU’s strategy, despite British attempts to sow division, by consulting widely and regularly.
MICHEL BARNIER’S three year stint as the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator will soon be coming to an end but he will remain heavily involved with the UK as he looks set to head up a new role leading the second phase of Brexit talks. Michel Barnier became the EU’s chief Brexit negotiation in July 2016, shortly after the EU referendum result and he looks set to continue in a similar role, even after the UK has left the bloc. The French politician will lead a ‘UK Task Force’ in the next European Commission, which will start on December 1 – a month later than planned, according to a Commission official and an EU27 diplomat. The team was originally meant to be called ‘Task Force UK’ before EU officials noted the acronym (TFUK) might be problematic, Politico reported.
Doctors have welcomed a “turning point” in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease after the development of a drug apparently able to slow the condition if it is caught in its earliest stages. It would be the first effective treatment for the biggest single cause of dementia, validating billions of pounds of research and decades of work. Biogen’s drug, aducanumab, would also be one of the most stunning reversals in the history of pharmaceutical development. Like several similar products, it had originally failed in trials.
The first treatment to slow Alzheimer’s disease could soon be available to millions, it was dramatically announced last night. Drugs giant Biogen shook the medical world by unexpectedly releasing results suggesting it has developed the first effective medicine for the disease. After years of high-profile dementia trial failures, experts last night welcomed the ‘transformative discovery’ as a ‘hugely exciting’ breakthrough that could be life changing for dementia patients. Crucially, the company said trial data for drug aducanumab is strong enough to apply for medicine licences in the US, Europe and Japan early next year. That in itself is a huge milestone.
A “GROUNDBREAKING” drug has successfully slowed down Alzheimer’s – and could be available within two years. Trial data shows patients given high doses of aducanumab experienced a “significant” boost to their memory and language skills. Its U.S. maker is now set to apply to regulators for approval for use against Alzheimer’s – giving hope to more than 500,000 Brits with the disease. If given the green light, it will be the world’s first treatment for the brain-wasting disease.
Ministers must consider decriminalising the possession of drugs, MPs have said in a new report that calls for “radical change” to the UK’s approach. The Health and Social Care Committee said the rate of drug-related deaths in the UK had risen to the scale of a public health emergency, and urged that any policy should focus on healthcare, not prosecution, with drug possession for personal use treated as a civil matter and not a crime. Britain has some of the highest drug death rates in Europe.
The government should investigate decriminalising the possession of all illegal drugs in a bid to prevent the rising number of related deaths, a group of MPs has said. The health and social care committee said the level of such deaths in the UK had become a public health “emergency”. It found the UK’s position on drugs was “clearly failing” and called for a “radical new approach” in policy. The government said it had no plans to decriminalise drug possession.