Rebels all round as Lords vote to stay in single market

Earlier, peers voted against the government on an amendment that would allow Britain to participate in European Union agencies after leaving the bloc.

But Labour's Lord Alli, who moved the successful amendment, said continued EEA membership was vital to ensure the future profitability of the UK's export business.

A further defeat came when peers voted in favour of amendment calling for increased scrutiny of secondary legislation made by ministers, backing it by 225 votes to 194, majority 31.

'Given the numbers of Conservative MPs now supporting the United Kingdom continuing to participate in the EEA, Labour is looking a gift horse in the mouth, ' he said.

By a majority of just 22, peers backed a cross-party amendment which would remove the exit date bill which is now being debated by the House of Lords at Westminster before returning to the House of Commons. "We simply can not aid and abet this hard, destructive Brexit".

Though all of the changes can be reversed when the legislation returns to the House of Commons, it's not clear there's appetite in the Lower Chamber to do so.

Ex-chancellor Ken Clarke delivered mocking comments to the Foreign Secretary
Ex-chancellor Ken Clarke delivered mocking comments to the Foreign Secretary

The government's Brexit Minister in the House of Lords, Lord Callanan argued against the amendment to seek EEA membership saying it would not deliver control of British borders or laws as the United Kingdom would have to accept freedom of movement and European Union regulations.

The Lords voted for cross-party amendments to allow Britain's continued participation in European Union agencies, and to remove the Brexit date of March 29 2019 from the bill. Conservative peer Charles Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, told lawmakers on Tuesday. Both houses have to agree on the final wording of the bill before it can become law.

And the opposite would kill off the federal government plan to write down the precise time and date of Brexit into regulation, which Mrs Could pledged final yr to stop insurgent MPs from derailing our exit.

Peers are seeking to amend the draft law to remove the fixed timing of Brexit at 11pm on March 29 next year, and to enable future governments to participate in European Union agencies after the United Kingdom leaves the bloc.

He added: "We should give ministers a bit more flexibility to secure and obtain ratification of the best possible deal, which will do the least damage to the economy and the national interest".

Notable Tory rebels included former Cabinet minister Lord Patten of Barnes and former deputy prime minister Lord Heseltine.

  • Rogelio Becker