MPs are debating Boris Johnson’s new Brexit deal in the House of Commons in what is the first Saturday sitting of the Commons in 37 years.
It was expected that MPs would vote on the Prime Minister’s new deal this afternoon, however, whether the vote will, in fact, take place has now become uncertainty.
MPs are to debate a proposal from Sir Oliver Letwin which could delay Brexit again until all necessary UK legislation is passed for the departure from the EU. Downing Street has indicated it may postpone the vote on the revised deal if MPs vote for further delay.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson told MPs on Saturday morning, “now is the time to get this thing done”, and he added that there is “a burning desire to get Brexit done”.
The new Brexit deal was agreed by EU leaders at the EU Summit on Thursday after late in the day negotiations between UK and EU officials. However, it is uncertain whether the deal can make it through Parliament – the SNP, Liberal Democrats, Plaid Cymru, the Green Party and the Independent Group for Change have all said they will vote against the deal. The DUP has also said it will vote against the deal, and Labour MPs are expected to do the same.
In order for the deal to pass, Mr Johnson will likely be relying on the support of the vast majority of his Conservative colleagues and some Labour rebels and independent MPs.
If MPs vote to back a delay under the Letwin Amendment, a letter could be sent to the EU requesting an extension by the end of the day – though it is unknown whether the EU would approve such a request.
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