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UK BREXIT  Empty Re: UK BREXIT

Post  Admin on Thu 05 Dec 2019, 12:39 pm

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7758955/Four-Brexit-Party-MEPs-set-QUIT-urge-voters-Boris-Johnson.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
Jacob Rees-Mogg's sister will QUIT the Brexit Party today with three other MEPs and urge voters to back Boris Johnson as Nigel Farage faces huge revolt
Four Brexit Party MEPs are set to quit this morning and urge voters to back Tories
John Longworth and Annunziata Rees-Mogg are among the group resigning
Move comes just a week before election and as Nigel Farage faces BBC grilling 
By JAMES TAPSFIELD, MAILONLINE POLITICAL EDITOR
PUBLISHED: 09:32, 5 December 2019 | UPDATED: 10:32, 5 December 2019
View comments
Nigel Farage voiced fury today as he faced a Brexit Party mutiny today with four MEPs set to quit and urge voters to back Boris Johnson at the election.

The dramatic resignations are set to be announced with just a week to go before polling day - and just before Mr Farage records a high-profile interview with the BBC's Andrew Neil. 

Party sources told MailOnline they expected John Longworth, the former British Chambers of Commerce chief, to deliver the blow alongside Annunziata Rees-Mogg.

Lance Forman and Lucy Harris are also set to resign, although all four will continue to sit as independent MEPs. Mr Longworth had the whip removed yesterday for allegedly voting in favour of Mr Johnson's divorce package in the European Parliament. 

Mr Farage said he was 'disappointed' and dismissed the idea that the Brexit Party was risking a Jeremy Corbyn government. A spokesman also pointed to close ties between the rebels and senior Tories - including Ms Rees-Mogg's brother Jacob.   

The news will fuel fears of a complete meltdown, with deep splits over whether to go all-out against the Tories on December 12 or endorse the PM's deal with the EU. 

Nigel Farage is facing a Brexit Party mutiny today with four MEPs set to quit and urge voters to back Boris Johnson at the election +2
Nigel Farage is facing a Brexit Party mutiny today with four MEPs set to quit and urge voters to back Boris Johnson at the election

Party sources told MailOnline they expected John Longworth, the former British Chambers of Commerce chief, to deliver the blow alongside Annunziata Rees-Mogg (pictured)
Mr Longworth had the whip removed yesterday for allegedly voting in favour of Mr Johnson’s divorce package in the European Parliament
Brexit Party sources told MailOnline they expected John Longworth (right), the former British Chambers of Commerce chief, to deliver the blow alongside Annunziata Rees-Mogg (left)

Mr Farage said: 'We are disappointed that four of our MEPs don't seem to understand that we both saved the Conservative party from large scale losses to the Liberal Democrats in the South and South West of England but we are also hammering the Labour Leave vote in its traditional heartlands making it much easier for the Conservatives to win many of those seats. 

'The only vote on the Leave side that is currently being split is in areas such as Barnsley, the South Wales Valleys, Doncaster and Hartlepool where there is a risk that the Tories will split our vote.'  

A Brexit Party spokesman added: 'We also note that one of the MEPs is the sister of a Cabinet Minister, another has a partner who works in the office of the same Cabinet Minister and yet another is a personal friend of both Boris Johnson and Michael Gove. 

The awkward moment Hugh Grant is confronted over Labour...
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'In the case of John Longworth, who was for years the firmest advocate of WTO withdrawal that we have ever met, he underwent a metamorphosis into being a supporter of the new EU treaty following two days of meetings in London.'

Mr Johnson today renewed his commitment to get Brexit done, saying he would stick to the January 31 departure date and the transition period will not last beyond 2020. 

The Brexit Party opposes the deal in principle and has ordered all MEPs to vote against it, claiming it is not 'real Brexit'.

Mr Longworth is a member of a committee which was yesterday ordered to vote in secret in the European Parliament in Brussels.

But he has refused to say which way he cast his ballot on the issue. 

Mr Farage dramatically pulled candidates from more than 300 seats that were won by the Conservatives in 2017, saying he did not want to split the Eurosceptic vote and hand victory to Labour.

But he insisted the party will still fight Labour constituencies, arguing they are best placed to win in Leave-leaning Northern heartlands.     

Mr Johnson (pictured on ITV's Peston last night) has renewed his commitment to get Brexit done, saying he would stick to the January 31 departure date and the transition period will not last beyond 2020 +2
Mr Johnson (pictured on ITV's Peston last night) has renewed his commitment to get Brexit done, saying he would stick to the January 31 departure date and the transition period will not last beyond 2020
Share or comment on this article: Four Brexit Party MEPs are set to QUIT and urge voters to back Boris Johnson
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Post  Admin on Wed 09 Oct 2019, 9:07 pm

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7554999/EU-Parliament-chief-met-John-Bercow-discuss-shared-desire-avoid-No-Deal.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ico=taboola_feed_desktop_femail
Fury as EU Parliament chief reveals he met Commons Speaker John Bercow to discuss their 'shared' desire to to avoid No Deal Brexit
EU Parliament president David Sassoli revealed he met John Bercow for talks
The MEP said they 'shared an awareness' that a No Deal Brexit would be bad 
Nigel Farage accused Speaker of working with the EU to 'prevent a clean break' 
By JAMES TAPSFIELD, POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 16:07, 9 October 2019 | UPDATED: 16:28, 9 October 2019
Speaker John Bercow faced allegations of 'plotting' today after it emerged he met the EU parliament chief to discuss their 'shared' desire to avoid No Deal.

David Sassoli revealed he held talks with Mr Bercow in London this morning, telling MEPs they were on the 'same wavelength'.

Mr Sassoli said the pair agreed that the UK and EU Parliaments must have a key role in 'managing' the Brexit process.

'We share an awareness that a chaotic exit of the UK from the EU would work to the detriment of citizens on both sides,' he said.

But the news sparked anger from Eurosceptics including Nigel Farage, who said it was a 'disgrace' that the president and the Speaker had 'agreed to work to prevent a clean break Brexit'.

'What right does the Speaker have to do this?' he demanded. 

Speaker John Bercow (pictured in the Commons last night' faced allegations of 'plotting' today after it emerged he met the senior MEP to discuss their 'shared' desire to avoid No Deal +3
Speaker John Bercow (pictured in the Commons last night' faced allegations of 'plotting' today after it emerged he met the senior MEP to discuss their 'shared' desire to avoid No Deal
or Mr Bercow contrasted with Mr Sassoli's description of his meeting with Boris Johnson in No10 last night. 

He said those discussions had reinforced his view that 'not much progress' was being made.  

John Bercow blasted as a 'verbal playground bully' as NINE MPs line up to replace him
John Bercow was branded a 'verbal playground bully' today as MPs lined up to take his place as Commons Speaker.

Nine senior parliamentarians took pot shots at the controversial parliamentary gatekeeper as they too part in a special hustings ahead of an election for the role.

Mr Bercow, who has infuriated Brexiteers over his interventionist policy over Brexit, and been at the heart of a bullying controversy, is to step down at the end of the month after a decade in the chair.

Tory MP Shailesh Vara said he believed Mr Bercow had 'tarnished the role of Speaker with his biasness' over Brexit and described him as a 'verbal playground bully'.

Mr Vara said Mr Bercow 'loses all authority to lecture to MPs as to how they should behave when his own behaviour is in question'.

He added: 'So I think that the speaker should always be courteous and polite, authoritative yes, but not demeaning to his colleagues.' 

The election of the next Commons Speaker will take place on November 4, after Mr Bercow - who has held the office since 2009 - takes the chair for the final time on October 31. 

The candidates were asked if they thought Mr Bercow 'behaved well' back at the time of the initial prorogation period, and whether they would have handled it any differently.

The now-overturned prorogation saw farcical scenes in the Commons chamber in the early hours of the morning 

Labour former minister Chris Bryant said he hated the 'chaos in the chamber', adding: 'I didn't think that did us any favours. I thought it was crazy that we were doing it at 2 o'clock in the morning or whatever it was.' 

Tory Sir Henry Bellingham added: 'I think the Speaker rose to the occasion in his own way but I think he shouldn't have shown disbelief.'

Labour's Harriet Harman, the longest serving female MP said: 'I think the public were appalled by what they saw on television and I completely agree with them.' 

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, the favourite to replace Mr Bercow, said: 'We have to get the public to put their trust back in Parliament.'

He added: 'We don't need to be a bear pit.'

The Speaker is meant to be an impartial referee of debates, but Mr Bercow has repeatedly been 'creative' with the rules to frustrate the government - saying his duty was to champion MPs against the executive.

Theresa May's Brexit plans were thwarted partly as a result of his intervention, and last month a rebel law was passed ordering the PM to beg the EU for a Brexit 
MORE or Mr Bercow contrasted with Mr Sassoli's description of his meeting with Boris Johnson in No10 last night. 

He said those discussions had reinforced his view that 'not much progress' was being made.  

John Bercow blasted as a 'verbal playground bully' as NINE MPs line up to replace him
John Bercow was branded a 'verbal playground bully' today as MPs lined up to take his place as Commons Speaker.

Nine senior parliamentarians took pot shots at the controversial parliamentary gatekeeper as they too part in a special hustings ahead of an election for the role.

Mr Bercow, who has infuriated Brexiteers over his interventionist policy over Brexit, and been at the heart of a bullying controversy, is to step down at the end of the month after a decade in the chair.

Tory MP Shailesh Vara said he believed Mr Bercow had 'tarnished the role of Speaker with his biasness' over Brexit and described him as a 'verbal playground bully'.

Mr Vara said Mr Bercow 'loses all authority to lecture to MPs as to how they should behave when his own behaviour is in question'.

He added: 'So I think that the speaker should always be courteous and polite, authoritative yes, but not demeaning to his colleagues.' 

The election of the next Commons Speaker will take place on November 4, after Mr Bercow - who has held the office since 2009 - takes the chair for the final time on October 31. 

The candidates were asked if they thought Mr Bercow 'behaved well' back at the time of the initial prorogation period, and whether they would have handled it any differently.

The now-overturned prorogation saw farcical scenes in the Commons chamber in the early hours of the morning 

Labour former minister Chris Bryant said he hated the 'chaos in the chamber', adding: 'I didn't think that did us any favours. I thought it was crazy that we were doing it at 2 o'clock in the morning or whatever it was.' 

Tory Sir Henry Bellingham added: 'I think the Speaker rose to the occasion in his own way but I think he shouldn't have shown disbelief.'

Labour's Harriet Harman, the longest serving female MP said: 'I think the public were appalled by what they saw on television and I completely agree with them.' 

Sir Lindsay Hoyle, the favourite to replace Mr Bercow, said: 'We have to get the public to put their trust back in Parliament.'

He added: 'We don't need to be a bear pit.'

The Speaker is meant to be an impartial referee of debates, but Mr Bercow has repeatedly been 'creative' with the rules to frustrate the government - saying his duty was to champion MPs against the executive.

Theresa May's Brexit plans were thwarted partly as a result of his intervention, and last month a rebel law was passed ordering the PM to beg the EU for a Brexit
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UK BREXIT  Empty Re: UK BREXIT

Post  Admin on Mon 27 May 2019, 12:31 pm

EU election day: tens of millions turn out to vote in battle between “populists” and “globalists”
By Christine Douglass-Williams on May 26, 2019 11:50 am
EU election day: tens of millions turn out to vote in battle between “populists” and “globalists”
“Tens of millions of Europeans in 21 countries are voting Sunday [today] in the European Parliamentary election in a continent-wide battle between euroskeptic populists and proponents of closer EU unity.” French leader Emmanuel Macron “whose country has been rocked in recent months by the populist yellow vest movement, has called the elections ‘the most important […]
MORE https://www.jihadwatch.org/2019/05/eu-election-day-tens-of-millions-turn-out-to-vote-in-battle-between-populists-and-globalists
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UK BREXIT  Empty Re: UK BREXIT

Post  Admin on Sun 26 May 2019, 11:22 pm

LIVE UPDATES: Brexit Party storming to victory in European elections Joe RobertsSunday 26 May 2019 10:28 pm Share this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messenger 724 SHARES The results are coming in across the country (Picture: AP) The Brexit Party is storming to victory on what promises to be a landslide European elections for Nigel Farage. Labour and the Tories are preparing themselves for a disastrous night as Remain and Leave voters turn away to other parties with clearer messages on Brexit. The pro-EU Liberal Democrats have also piled on votes, indicating that the deep divisions exposed by the Brexit referendum continue to dominate British politics. With Theresa May heading for the exit, the vote will be an indication of the scale of the challenge facing her successor. ADVERTISING Tonight will see 70 MEP seats declared across 12 regions for the European Parliament, including three more from Northern Ireland.


Read more: https://metro.co.uk/2019/05/26/live-updates-european-elections-results-happen-9694903/?utm_source=pushly?ito=cbshare

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MetroUK | Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MetroUK/
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UK BREXIT  Empty Re: UK BREXIT

Post  Admin on Wed 22 May 2019, 9:04 pm

Growing calls for Theresa May to resign amid anger at new Brexit bill Jen MillsWednesday 22 May 2019 5:40 pm Share this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messenger The prime minister is facing increased calls to resign amid anger at her new plan for Brexit. Many MPs in her own party are angry with her ‘new deal’, which she announced in a speech yesterday evening. Changes to the Withdrawal Agreement Bill included giving MPs a vote on whether to hold a second referendum. Critics say it could open the door to a customs union, keeping us much more closely tied to the EU than they would like. Tim Loughton MP told the BBC he had submitted a letter of no confidence in Theresa May for the first time. ‘I’ve never put in a letter of no confidence in a leader of the Conservative Party in my 22 years here but frankly this has got to be resolved,’ he said. The prime minister faced a tough PMQs today (Picture: PA) ‘I can see no way out of the impasse we’re in at the moment on Brexit and I’m afraid I can’t see any way out with Theresa May leading it. We need a new leader very quickly, with a new fresh approach to try and break through this impasse.’ He said he hoped the rules would change to allow a new challenge to Theresa May’s leadership. Meanwhile, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has asked to see Prime Minister Theresa May, the political editors of the Times and the BBC reported. Parliamentary Twitter has gone into overdrive with rumours that she might step down as early as this evening. However, a Downing Street spokesman told Metro.co.uk there were no plans for her to make a statement tonight. ‘I don’t think so at the moment,’ she said. ‘I’ve not heard of one. It comes after MPs piled on the pressure for her to leave. Hanging on for now (Picture: Getty) Tory moderate Tom Tugendhat said the only chance of delivering an orderly Brexit was for May ‘to go – and without delay.’ ‘She must announce her resignation after Thursday’s European elections. And the Conservative Party must fast track the leadership process to replace her,’ he wrote in the Financial Times. In PMQs today, May received a flurry of criticism and hostile questions as she implored lawmakers to support her new bill aimed at delivering Brexit in June. If Parliament rejected her deal, she said, ‘all we have before us is division and deadlock.’ May survived a no-confidence vote among Conservative lawmakers in December, leaving her safe from challenge for 12 months under current party rules. She has said she will announce a timetable for her departure once Parliament has voted on her Brexit bill. But with defeat of that bill looking highly likely, a growing number of Conservatives are pressing her to cancel the vote and quit even sooner. Brexit-backing MP Nigel Evans said he would urge the party committee that oversees leadership contests to change the rules when it meets Wednesday so that May can face a new challenge within days. ‘There is a growing discontent with the way Theresa May has handled this,’ Evans said. ‘Let’s have somebody who has a clean sheet and will be able to reboot the (Brexit) negotiations.’ Pressure is only set to increase after the European elections, with the Tory party expected to suffer big losses at the hands of the Brexit Party. Pro-EU parties such as the Lib Dems and the Greens are also expected to take votes from the two main parties. The election is being held Thursday in Britain, but results won’t be announced until all 28 EU countries have finished voting late on Sunday.


Read more: https://metro.co.uk/2019/05/22/growing-calls-theresa-may-resign-amid-anger-new-brexit-bill-9654260/?ico=pushly-notifcation-small&utm_source=pushly?ito=cbshare
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UK BREXIT  Empty BREXIT PROPHESY END TIMES

Post  Admin on Sun 19 May 2019, 5:57 pm

BREXIT
 https://www.mdpi.com/2077-1444/9/12/396/htm
Religions 2018, 9(12), 396; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9120396
Article
Brexit, Babylon and Prophecy: Semiotics of the End Times
Steve Knowles
Theology and Religious Studies Department, University of Chester, Chester CH1 4BJ, UK
Received: 29 October 2018 / Accepted: 28 November 2018 / Published: 3 December 2018
Abstract: This article examines the predilection some Christian premillennialist preachers and teachers have with the semiotic association of geopolitics and biblical prophecy concerning the end times. This was epitomised in the run up to the United Kingdom’s referendum on continued membership of the European Union in June 2016. Since its inception, many premillennialists have interpreted the European Union as the place where the Antichrist emerges. Material objects associated with the European Union such as architecture, sculptures, currency and even posters, have been routinely highlighted as providing clear signs of the coming eschaton. Prophetic links between the European Union and satanic agencies, purported to be behind the ambition for an expanding European confederacy, ensured that many premillennialists voted to leave the European Union or were advised to do so in light of such prophetic signifiers. Utilising Webb Keane’s notion of representational economies, I argue that a premillennialist representational economy drives the search for signs in the everyday, and specifically those associated with the European Union. In this case, such semiotic promiscuity ratified the need to leave the European Union.
Keywords: Brexit; prophecy; premillennialism; European Union; semiotics; Webb Keane


1. Introduction
When Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, gave his post-Brexit statement in an attempt to calm nerves in the immediate aftermath of a seismic shift in European politics, his speech addressed the sense of uncertainty that hovered over the United Kingdom (UK). He spoke of a trinity of uncertainties that affected the economy: geo-political, economic and policy. All of them fed into what he described as “living in times of considerable uncertainty”1. The context for the governor’s statement was the UK economy and the interim fiscal policies related to leaving the European Union. It was an attempt to calm the financial markets and a tactic designed to send out the ‘right signs’ that would encourage confidence in the UK economy.
For many social commentators, cultural uncertainty in Western society is not new but has been an underlying theme, particularly over the last 70 years: since the end of the Second World War. Uncertainty and contingency are the hallmarks of living in what has been termed late modernity2.
Not everyone, however, views such developments with the kind of caution often associated with sociological analysis on the late modern condition. For Christian fundamentalists who hold to a premillennialist3 apocalyptic eschatology, that same uncertainty is interpreted in an entirely different fashion. Whereas, uncertainty has become a consistently applied trope for describing the flux of everyday life in Western society, premillennialists paradoxically seek to find assurance and stability in that very same turbulent and unsettled climate. Indeed, the trinity of uncertainties Carney referred to are actually understood as the ‘right signs’ from a premillennialist perspective because they point to the ‘end times’4.
Signs are extremely important for premillennialists. Interpreted through the prophetic texts of the Bible, they act as a barometer for the proximity of Christ’s return5. Catastrophic events in the form of terrorist attacks, international financial collapse, tsunamis and mass immigration are some of the more significant indicators, or signs, that point to the world being in the end times6. That said, not all signs of the end times are as exceptional as some of those listed above. There are indicators to be found in the quotidian and mundane objects and symbols of society that the end times are upon us. This paper focuses on some of these examples in relation to a larger prophetic narrative within the premillennialist apocalyptic eschatological narrative framework—the European Union. I examine how material things such as architecture, posters and sculptures are part of a system of signs that form what the anthropologist Webb Keane refers to as a ‘representational economy’ of, in this case, the premillennialist prophecy narrative framework7. Moreover, the materiality of such examples is vitally important because acknowledging “[a] materialized study of religion begins with the assumption that things, their use, their valuation, and their appeal are not something added to a religion but inextricable from it”8. It is particularly apparent in the study that follows that without signs, symbols, and tangible material reference points, prophecy would be mostly redundant.
Drawing on data gathered from leading premillennialist figures in print and open access digital media, I argue that the premillennialist apocalyptic ideology—sustained by a predilection for the semiotic association of geopolitics and biblical prophecy—ultimately contributed to the rejection, by UK premillennialists, of continued membership of the EU in the referendum held in June 2016. Using Keane’s notion of representational economy and associated semiotic concepts, two examples will be considered which have become focal points for the premillennialist rejection of the EU9.


2. Key Aspects of Premillennial Apocalyptic Eschatology
Premillennialist pastors and teachers in the UK took a close interest in the build up to the EU referendum. In sermons up and down the country they were providing what they saw as the biblical case for leaving the EU10. Principally, this is because the EU, in the premillennialist prophetic narrative framework, is associated with the emergence of the Antichrist foretold in the Bible. Prophecies concerning what is referred to as the revived Roman Empire have a strong correlation with the contemporary union of nation-states in Europe, and the European Union is understood to be the fulfilment of such prophetic conjecture.
Premillennialists are defined by their interest in the end times with the term referring to Christ’s return (Second Advent) and his subsequent one thousand year reign over all the earth11. The premillennialists who are the focus of this paper are known as pretribulation premillennialists12. Most adhere to what they describe in the vernacular as a ‘plain’ reading of the biblical text, common among fundamentalist groups13. This is not the same as a literal interpretation of the text, though it is often conflated with it.
The doctrine of the ‘secret rapture’ is key to their eschatological framework14. This is the expectation of an any-moment and imminent return of Christ15 to take all believers—living and dead—away from the world. The event of the rapture is the harbinger for numerous catastrophic events which take place during a seven-year period known as the Great Tribulation. Christ removes Christians from the earth (in the rapture) leaving only Jews and non-Christians behind16. During this time the Antichrist emerges initially heralding world peace, signs a covenant with Israel and forms a government. However, the peace does not last and within this short period cataclysmic events unfold including world wars, famine, and natural disasters which culminate at the end of the seven years in the Battle of Armageddon17. Christ then returns triumphant, defeats Satan and establishes a one-thousand-year reign of peace. After the millennium Christ judges all of humanity and establishes a new heaven and new earth18.


Key Biblical Texts
The primary biblical texts used to support the links between the EU and the Antichrist are the books of Daniel and Revelation. In Daniel chapter 2, Daniel interprets the dream of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The dream centres upon a statue made of five different components19, and is initially interpreted as referring to four world powers and their fate. The feet of iron and clay which emerge from the fourth, or old Roman Empire, are what Bible prophecy teachers regard as representing the revived Roman Empire—the fifth empire—from which the Antichrist emerges in the end times. The ten toes of the feet of the statue are made from iron and clay: two materials that do not readily meld together and hence, are inherently weak. Contemporary (pretribulational) premillennialists believe this signifies the current, perilous state of the contemporary European Union, which is purported to be the revived Roman Empire. The clay is understood to represent democracy, whilst the iron is totalitarian rule20.
Similarly, in Daniel chapter 7 there is the description of one of Daniel’s dreams in which a beast with ten horns arises. The horns represent ten kings (nations) who form a union and from these ten nations will arise one individual who will have control over them21. The individual is the Antichrist, who, in gaining authority over the ten will oust and overthrow three of them. The ten horns and the ten toes are identified as the Antichrist’s confederacy which culminates in eventual world domination. This is often linked with Revelation 13 where a beast emerges from the sea with ten horns, which are purported to correspond to the ten toes of the statue in Daniel chapter 2, as well as the ten horns of the beast of the alleged Roman Empire in Daniel chapter 7. It is this prophetic hermeneutic that drives the expectations of many premillennialists. Thus, any treaty, collaboration or union among European nations has often been treated with, on the one hand deep suspicion and on the other, a barely tempered excitement due to belief that biblical prophecy is being fulfilled22. Indeed, the re-forming of the revived Roman Empire in the guise of the EU is generally understood to be the second most important fulfilment of prophecy after the founding of the modern state of Israel in 1948.




3. A Premillennialist Representational Economy of the Prophetic
Keane’s notion of representational economies is central to this analysis as it provides a framework within which we can think about “the dynamic interconnections among different modes of signification at play within a particular historical and social formation”23. Further, “The idea of representational economy is meant to situate words, things and persons (along with other agentive beings such as spirits) dynamically within the same world with one another”24. It is a way of identifying the assumptions that particular communities or groups might have about certain goods or objects and how they then understand and interpret them within that setting. Closely linked to the notion of representational economy is that of semiotic ideology. “The different elements of a representational economy are subject to different causal logics and temporalities”25, and governed by semiotic ideologies, which are the “background assumptions about what signs are and how they function in the world”26. Keane notes:
By semiotic ideology I mean people’s background assumptions about what signs are and how they function in the world. Such assumptions help determine, for instance, what people will consider the likely role that intentions play in the signification to be, what kinds of possible agent exist to which acts of signification might be imputed, whether signs are arbitrary or necessarily linked to their objects, and so forth27.
They are formed between agentive subjects and the object which is acted upon by the agent. Thus, in this context, semiotic ideologies are the result of reflections on that which comprises the premillennialist prophetic representational economy. It is a form of guidance and a way of organizing the semiotic forms that are part of that specific economy of signs.
Another important aspect is the notion of indexicality in relation to representational economies. Indexicality refers to the connections and configurations of signs with one another. An index is something that points to/signifies or infers the signified, that which is the object. The work of the philosopher Charles S. Pierce is influential on Keane’s understanding of semiotics. Pierce describes indexicality in the following way:
A weathercock is an indication, or index, of the direction of the wind; because, in the first place, it really takes the self-same direction of the wind, so that there is a real connection between them, and in the second place, we are so constituted that when we see a weathercock pointing in a certain direction it draws our attention to that direction, and when we see the weathercock veering with the wind, we are forced by the law of the mind to think that direction is connected to the wind28.
We will see that there are material objects that are signs which point to the end times and which indicate, or provide indexes for its imminence. They act as weathercocks indicating the proximity of, and from where the Antichrist will emerge—pointing to the apocalyptic events which follow. Importantly, “the action of indices depends upon association by contiguity, and not upon association by resemblance or upon intellectual operations”29. Indexes, which at first sight, have no apparent connection with apocalyptic ideology actually signal its presence.


Demonic Materiality and Signs of the End Times


Within this prophetic representational economy, there exists the binary distinction between good and evil: the God of the Bible and Satan, who has a temporary hold and influence on this world. The objects that are recognised as being of a prophetic nature, as signifiers, are not always necessarily representative of divine intervention or activity; on the contrary, the symbols and material examples analysed here are what I describe as instances of demonic materialism.
As alluded to earlier, the notion of a revived Roman Empire dominates contemporary premillennialist prophetic conjecture and it is from here—symbolically as well as geographically—that the Antichrist emerges. The Antichrist then goes on to manipulate and influence political affairs in Europe and further afield. Prior to his unveiling, for premillennialists, his potency and scheming is readily tangible in terms of an ongoing spiritual warfare against Christianity and the diffusion of widespread political turmoil in Europe itself. The representational economy that constitutes the prophetic premillennialist apocalyptic eschatological framework includes both the divine and the demonic; however, what is important in terms of deciphering the imminence of the end times is the rise of what is perceived to be demonic activity and influence and how it is signified.
Keane notes that “where belief is crucial it must take material form…Ideas are not transmitted telepathically. They must be exteriorised in some way, for example, in words, gestures, objects or practices”30. Keane’s observations are important for understanding the relationship of belief in prophecy to the recognisable material manifestations that affirm the prophetic. Prophecy is about signs. They point to future events, the coming to pass of which are discernible in material things, in bricks and mortar, in steel and glass, in currency and in cotton flags. Demonic activity is readily identified, evidenced and exteriorised in the concrete objects of the material to which we now turn.




4. Manifestations of Demonic Materiality


From a premillennialist perspective, there has always been suspicion regarding the EU, due, as we have seen, to their particular understanding and interpretation of prophetic texts in the Bible. In its early iterations, in 1949 just after the Second World War, Paul-Henri Spaak, former Prime Minister of Belgium and acknowledged as one of the original founders of the EU, was reported to have said:
We do not want another committee. We have too many already. What we want is a man of sufficient stature to hold the allegiance of all people, and to lift us out of the economic morass in which we are sinking. Send us such a man and, be he god or the devil, we will receive him31.
This quotation has been used many times by premillennialists to emphasise the ulterior motives that lie behind the scenes of EU officialdom. However, I have been unable to find evidence of Spaak having actually uttered the quote attributed to him, which, it seems, has developed into something of an urban myth within premillennialist prophetic discourse. Regardless of their legitimacy, these words have served to generate what Richard Landes has termed “semiotic arousal”32. Indeed, in this context, ‘semiotic promiscuity’ would seem to be a more suitable description for the intensification of prophetic sign searching since Spaak allegedly uttered those words.
Consequently, numerous signs have been identified which together provide evidence that the EU is the prophesied revived Roman Empire. Among them are: the Louise Weiss building in Strasbourg, France—home of the European parliament; the currency of the EU—the Euro; the sculptures outside the European Union buildings in Strasbourg and Brussels—The Removal of Europa and Europa Riding the Bull, the flag of the EU and even the EU anthem. There are more but the focus will be limited to architecture and sculptures.


4.1. Louise Weiss Building in Strasbourg
When the Louise Weiss building in Strasbourg, France—home of the European parliament—was completed in 1999, its structure caused something of a stir. Designed by Paris-based architects Architecture Studio Europe, and constructed at a cost of some 470 million euros, the centrepiece consists of a 60m tower that intentionally appears to be unfinished on the eastern side. The rationale for the design was to signify the fact that no eastern European country had joined the EU at the time of completion; it symbolised the unrealised dream of a unified Europe.
The building’s purpose as the new home of the European parliament ensured scrutiny of the design from some unexpected quarters. Among them were conspiracists from various anti-globalisation movements and religious fundamentalist groups. Premillennialists, who belong to the latter category, did not buy in to the official narrative of why the tower was designed in such fashion. On the contrary, many believed that the structure was actually modelled on the painting, The Tower of Babel (1563), by the Dutch renaissance painter Pieter Bruegel (1525–1569). The significance of this is not so much in the similarity that the Louise Weiss building might have to Bruegel’s depiction of Babel per se; rather, it is the identification of the EU parliament building with Babel (Babylon)33 and what that represents that is purported to be symbolic of a more sinister influence. What compounded this theory was that 7 years earlier, in 1992, the European Council34 had circulated a poster depicting an image very similar to Bruegel’s Tower of Babel complete with a construction crane inside the perimeter signifying the continuing construction of the tower. The maxim that accompanied it was “Europe: Many Tongues One Voice”. The poster caused outrage among Christian groups and it was quickly removed from public circulation, allegedly due to their complaints35.
The reasons for the outrage generated by the image can be traced back to the way many Christians understand the story of the Tower of Babel found in Genesis chapter 11. The narrative describes the “whole world as having one language and a common speech” (11:1), who decide to build a city with a tower that “reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves and not be scattered over the face of the earth” (11:3–4). The story describes how God, seeing the ambition of the people, scatters all the people and their language, resulting in them no longer being able to understand each other36. From a premillennialist perspective, this has been interpreted to serve as a warning to humanity not to challenge God. However, the European Council poster was seen as a maleficent example of Europe setting itself up against God. Alan Franklin, UK-based journalist-turned Bible prophecy teacher noted that the poster “appears to be an attempt to reverse God’s judgement on Babel”37.
The maxim accompanying the image confirmed to premillennialists that the EU was trying to provide a platform to challenge God. “Europe: Many Tongues One Voice”, although appearing to be an inversion of the original, is interpreted as actually attempting to re-create the notion of ‘speaking as one’. Again, Franklin notes the array of interpreters employed in the EU parliament buildings and suggests that one voice or understanding is being created by other means with the same result38. David Hathaway, itinerant speaker and founder of Eurovision Mission to Europe asked, “is the EU the spiritual development of the original Babel, and is the EU attempting to build what God once destroyed?”39
In terms of semiotic ideology, within this economy of signs, Babel/Babylon represents rebellion against God and symbolises a marginalisation of worship of the one ‘true’ God. Thus, in light of the suspicions highlighted above, the construction of the Louise Weiss tower signifies a conjoining of EU agency along with, but under, demonic influence. In the context of the criticism with which the 1992 poster was met, it was absurd, in the mind of premillennialists that the design of the physical building went ahead replicating the form of Bruegel’s original. However, on the other hand, it fits with the prophetic narrative framework. It is part of the paradoxical nature of the premillennialist prophetic representational economy. It signifies that the EU is an instrument of more sinister powers: namely those that are satanic. Hathaway claims that not only does Louise Weiss building represent the Tower of Babel externally, the interior resembles that of the Colosseum in Rome. The significance of this should not go unnoticed and it is something to which we will return.
The notion that Babel/Babylon represents a system of government raised in opposition to God is not only significant in the representational economy of premillennialist prophecy narrative framework but highlights how such economies often interact with others in any given social context. The representational economy of international European politics identifies the Louise Weiss building in a very different way to that of premillennialist Christians. The tower is occupied by the offices of civil servants. It is a place where the European parliament meet every month in the cosmopolitan city of Strasbourg, France. For MEPs it is a place to debate the minutiae of EU policy. As well as a place of business, it is open to the general public to view and has cafeterias and refreshment areas. On the other hand, within the premillennialist representational economy, the building represents all that is wrong with the EU. Its design epitomises a flagrant revolt against God and thus is inspired by Satan. Importantly, due to its geographical location (i.e., the headquarters of European politics) it fulfils biblical prophecy.


4.2. The Woman and the Beast


UK BREXIT  Beast_12UK BREXIT  Babylo10




Outside the Winston Churchill EU building on Avenue du President Schuman, Strasbourg, is a sculpture of a woman riding on a bull entitled The Removal of Europa40. The statue represents the ancient Greek myth of the abduction of Europa by Zeus, and was a gift from Crete to the European Parliament in 2005. The association of Europe with the symbolism of a woman and a bull (beast) has a long history. Europe takes its name from Europa and this symbolism can be found adorned on many artefacts associated with the continent of Europe and, more recently, the European Union. As well as this statue, there is a similar one outside the Justus Lipsius building in Brussels—Europa Riding the Bull. Another example is located inside the Paul Henri Spaak EU building in Brussels where the glass facade inside the dome is covered with a 150 square meter large ceramic mural called Miti del Mediterraneo, which portrays the abduction of Europa and other elements of Greek mythology41. As well as appearing together on the Greek and Italian two Euro coin, the images of Europa and of the bull appear separately on various EU documents. For example, the bull features on EU residency permits, and the new Europa series of bank notes features an image of Europa42.
For EU officials, adopting such symbolism might be regarded as mundane and non-controversial in the secular environment of the political representational economy of the EU: it is symbolism that links the old Europe with the building of a new, stronger and united Europe. There is a quite different perspective when understood within the representational economy of premillennialist prophecy. The semiotic ideology governing the functional qualities and meanings of signs within the prophetic representational economy reflect very different connections in terms of what Europa and the bull actually denote.
Tony Pierce, a leading British premillennialist teacher and contributor to Prophetic Witness43 magazine, notes:
The EU has adopted symbols straight out of the Book of Revelation. Outside the Council of Europe building in Brussels there stands a statue of Europa (a woman) being carried off by a bull, a picture of the Greek myth of the Rape of Europa. In other words, it is a woman riding a beast. Revelation 17.1–6 sees a woman riding the beast as the symbol of false religion allied to the antichrist political power, persecuting true believers in Jesus44.
The semiotic ideology, the assumptions guiding how such signifiers should be interpreted, connects the physical presence of the sculpture with the symbolism found in the texts of the book of Revelation and specifically chapter 17. What is significant is the association of the woman riding the beast as a symbol of ‘false religion’ who, in turn, is allied to the Antichrist. The reference is generally understood in this economy of signs as the ‘apostate church’ (Rev 17). The woman depicted here is identified as a harlot (v.1). In verse 5 her full title is given: “Mystery Babylon the Great, Mother of Harlots, and of the abominations of the earth”. The clues to what church this might symbolise are found at the end of the chapter. Verse 18 states, “The woman you saw is the great city that rules over the kings of the earth”. Many premillennialists believe this to refer to the city of Rome: the hub of Europe which dominated the known world at the time that Revelation was written. Furthermore, the connection is made that the church associated with Rome is the Roman Catholic Church and its dominant position as a world religion.
In a sermon delivered two weeks prior to the UK referendum, David Moore, a Baptist minister in the UK claimed that the woman in Revelation 17 represents the Roman Catholic Church and her global influence. He stated,
When you think about spiritual entities, religious organisations that have this extent of presence, that has this amount of political sway, that has this degree of prosperity, that practices a religion that presents itself as Christianity but actually in practice is blasphemous and abominable, there is only one religion on earth that fits the bill … I’m speaking to you about Roman Catholicism45.
If more evidence were needed that the Roman Catholic Church represented the apostate church, Moore identified a further link in the colours described in Revelation 17:4. The woman is described as “dressed in purple and scarlet…” Moore was quick to point out that
Even the colouring [of the woman] here, the purple and the scarlet. Google the Holy See. Have a look at the images that come up. You’ll see them sitting there and you will find them arrayed in two colours: purple and scarlet.
Moore finds clear connections between the woman (the harlot) and the Roman Catholic Church. It is a view that is common within the representational economy of premillennialist prophecy. Pastor Ken Davidson of Donaghcloney Elim Church, Northern Ireland, in a passionately delivered pro-Brexit sermon, emphasised the link between the description in Rev 17:4 of the colour of the attire the woman wears, and the vestments of the Roman Catholic Church; even displaying a picture of them46.
The symbolism of the woman fits with the premillennialist view of Roman Catholicism, and it is no coincidence that this and the symbolism that adorns high profile architecture and artefacts of the EU resonates so strongly with that found in Bible prophecy. Indeed, as Joseph Webster, in his insightful study of Protestants in a Scottish fishing village, notes that it is ‘Godincidence’ that replaces coincidence47. However, it is the demonic that has temporary influence over the world with the EU being the cradle of the Antichrist.
Davidson, also, among many other examples of what he deemed to be Roman Catholic collusion with the machinations of the EU named some of the leading euro bureaucrats: Jean Claude Junker, Donald Tusk, Frans Timmermans, Martin Schulz, Mario Draghi and Federica Mogherini as all being Jesuits48. The point being made with such a lengthy list is that the EU is controlled by a Jesuit (Roman Catholic) cabal. For Davidson, it was part of a conspiratorial attempt to continue to wrestle power away from nation-state members under the guise of the EU. The connections and links that are evident demonstrate what I argue is a demonic lineage that premillennialists trace from the chapters of the book of Revelation through to the contemporary political administration of the EU. The Roman Catholic Church embodies the spirit of the Antichrist and its clandestine influence is a subjugating factor in EU politics49.


5. Prophetic Material Objects and Signifiers
In the representational economy of premillennial prophecy signs are important. Without signs, symbols and indicators there is no clue as to whether or not prophecy is being fulfilled; no indication as to the proximity of Christ’s return. Moreover, without the accompanying semiotic ideologies to assert themselves on material goods and products they do not actually affirm anything. Within this ‘economy’ the material objects, goods etc. are subject to scrutiny through the semiotic ideologies underpinned by the assumptions and influences of premillennialist apocalyptic eschatology.
The examples analysed here are part of a bigger picture in terms of the way material objects index the end times. They are part of the prophetic end time narrative focussed upon Europe and the formation of the European Union and what that represents—setting the scene for the Antichrist. The prophetic is not just about divine activity or action. The demonic is just as important for discerning the signs of the times. The devil is in the detail and it is within the detail of objects such as sculptures, posters, architecture, and the colour of garments that demonic influence is identified. It is such details that point beyond those objects themselves to the propinquity of the coming apocalypse: “The very materiality of objects is inseparable from their capacity to signify”50. The power of these material objects is made all the more potent by their connection, their indexicality to one another and what they point to beyond themselves. Semiotic ideologies allow for the objectification of signs to be identified as such and then traced in terms of what they signify; they manifest further points of signification.
What is evident from analysis of those objects is that there is a common denominator that demonstrates both commonality and also a processual linkage between the material signs. That signifier is Babylon. If, in the words of the New Testament scholar Ernst Käsemann, “apocalyptic [ism] was the mother of all Christian theology”51, then Babylon might be regarded as the mother of all apocalyptic signifiers in terms of its importance in this representational economy. Babylon, if not explicitly symbolised, lurks in the shadows of the representational economy of premillennial prophecy.
Starting with The Tower of Babel, this serves first as a symbol of rebellion against God. In Peircean semiotics, a symbol need not have any connection between what it is ontologically, and what it signifies. What it signifies is culturally learned. For Pierce, “a symbol…fulfils its function regardless of any similarity or analogy with its object and equally regardless of any factual connection”52. Thus, in this sense, a tower reaching up to the heavens symbolically denotes a rejection of God. This understanding has, through instruction and repetition, become a normative myth within the Christian tradition and is the root, or origin, of the processual linkages to the material objects that point beyond themselves to the end times.
The Louise Weiss building is both an icon and an index signifying and representing contemporary Babylon (Babel). It is an icon of the Tower of Babel in terms of imagined similarity, in accord with Pierce’s understanding. In premillennialist discourse such iconicity signifies that same rebellion manifest in the original myth. As well as being an iconic object it has indexical qualities, inasmuch as it points to something beyond itself: the proximity of the end times and the notion that the arrival of the Antichrist is close at hand. It has meaning beyond its ontological status and its concrete materiality as a European Union parliamentary building; however, it is also precisely because it is an EU structure that it is an object of demonic materiality, and an object that signifies such presence.
The symbolic nature of the statues of Europa riding the bull (beast) outside prominent EU buildings indexically points to demonic activity. Europa signifies what premillennialists believe to be the apostate church. Linked to ‘Mystery Babylon’ in Revelation, Europa and the beast signify the Roman Catholic church and invoke powerful symbolism that is interpreted as Roman Catholicism, as counterfeit Christianity in the service of Satan that has infiltrated the hierarchy of the EU.




6. Conclusions
What does this all have to do with the referendum on whether the UK should leave the EU? The semiotic ideology that lies within the representational economy of premillennial prophecy interprets European confederacy as the fulfilment of the prophetic texts found in Daniel and Revelation. It is here we find text and contemporary context together generate, in the words of Richard Landes, “semiotic arousal” (Landes 2011, p. 14). The symbolism adopted by the EU serves to affirm and ratify this understanding. This being the case, premillennialist pastors, teachers and leaders were compelled to recommend to their congregations and followers to ‘leave’ and vote for ‘Brexit’53. To vote to remain was tantamount to rebelling against God and side with a union that sought to align itself with Satan and the emerging Antichrist. To leave was purposely to distance oneself from the machinations of the EU, as well as to disassociate ‘true’ believers from the apostate church—Roman Catholicism—Mystery Babylon, the harlot (Europa) and the cabal of Jesuits, who in the echelons of power within the EU, are deemed to be working toward complete control of European nation-states. In the words of Alan Franklin:
The Bible teaches that the Revived Roman Empire of the end times will be a creation of Satan, and out of it will come his representative, the Antichrist. The fact that the formation of the European Union has major spiritual implications is reflected in the religious symbols that the Union has adopted in the form of its flag, its anthem, its architecture, and its basic logo54.
For premillennialists, Brexit was a necessary rejection of an end time empire that signifies through accretion a lineage of material products pointing to demonic powers that emerge in the end times and produce the Antichrist.
Funding
This research received no external funding.


Conflicts of Interest
The author declares no conflicts of interest.
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Post  Admin on Tue 23 Apr 2019, 3:27 pm

YOU WANT TO STAY IN EU?
Brunei defends death by stoning for gay sex in letter to EU
Kingdom’s mission to trade bloc calls for tolerance and understanding over penal code
about 22 hours ago
Daniel Boffey Brussels
The sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, has ruled the former British colony since 1967. Photograph: EPA/STR
Brunei has written to the European Parliament defending its decision to start imposing death by stoning as a punishment for gay sex, claiming convictions would be rare as it required two men of “high moral standing piety” to be witnesses.

In a four-page letter to MEPs, the kingdom’s mission to the European Union calls for “tolerance, respect, understanding” with regard to the country’s desire to preserve its traditional values and “family lineage”.

The new penal code, which also provides for amputation in the case of thieves and whipping for people wearing clothes associated with the opposite sex, was brought in on April 3rd, despite international condemnation.

But in a letter to MEPs, the kingdom claims the outcry is due to a misconception that it wanted to clarify.

“The criminalisation of adultery and sodomy is to safeguard the sanctity of family lineage and marriage to individual Muslims, particularly women,” the kingdom says.

“The penal sentences of hadd – stoning to death and amputation, imposed for offences of theft, robbery, adultery and sodomy – have extremely high evidentiary threshold, requiring no less than two or four men of high moral standing and piety as witnesses – to the exclusion of every form of circumstantial evidence.”

Brunei, a British colony until 1984, said this was “coupled with a very high standard of proof of ‘no doubt at all’ for all aspects, which goes further than the common-law standard of ‘beyond reasonable doubt’”.

Such is the required “standards of piety of the male witness” that the kingdom writes that it is “extremely difficult to find one in this day and age, to the extent that convictions of hadd may solely rest on confessions of the offender”. Confessions, the kingdom adds, may be retracted.

Whipping
In regard to whipping, if that is deemed by sharia courts to be the appropriate punishment, the kingdom says this will be administered only by those of the same gender as those convicted.

“The offender must be clothed, whipping must be with moderate force without lifting his hand over his head, shall not result in the laceration of the skin nor the breaking of bones and shall not be inflicted on the face, head, stomach, chest or private parts.”

The letter was sent before a vote last week in which MEPs backed a resolution by a show of hands strongly condemning “the entry into force of the retrograde sharia penal code”.

The parliament also called on the EU to consider asset freezes, visa bans and the blacklisting of nine hotels owned by Brunei Investment Agency, including the Dorchester in London, the Beverly Hills hotel and the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles. Celebrities including Elton John and George Clooney have called for the hotels to be boycotted.

The sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah, is one of the world’s richest leaders with a personal wealth of about $20 billion (€17.75 billion). He has ruled since 1967.

Homosexuality has been illegal since the country broke from British rule, but before the recent move to a more conservative interpretation of Islam it was punishable by jail.

Britain, France, Germany and the UN are among those who have condemned the hardening of the kingdom’s laws. – Guardian News and Media 2019
MORE https://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/asia-pacific/brunei-defends-death-by-stoning-for-gay-sex-in-letter-to-eu-1.3868378?fbclid=IwAR0zed0BgwBYK3c5xnvHkyf53mDmWa61ylWaTumPHt19fp7P-FcwgFxcZmE
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Post  Admin on Wed 10 Apr 2019, 10:57 pm

Brexit 'delayed to Halloween': EU leaders 'agree to postpone Britain's exit until 31 October' after hardliner Macron digs in and humiliates Theresa May at marathon summit after she asked for a short extension until June
EU leaders had been leaning towards a long Brexit delay, dashing Mrs May's hopes of leaving by summer
But France's Macron dug in for a shorter delay - closer to the June 30 date Mrs May actually wants
October 31 - Halloween - would be a compromise between the two, with a review taking place in June
EU official had said Macron was being 'annoying and 'it will take hours before we pull him down from his tree' 
Theresa May spent a little over an hour in a question and answer session with EU leaders in Brussels
She has asked for a delay until June 30 but EU is  expected to impose nine months to a year instead 
Federalist French president said he did not want Brexit to get in the way 'carrying out a European rebirth'
He had appeared to wink as he arrived at the emergency summit of EU leaders after flexing his muscles 
Donald Tusk and Angela Merkel have warned him against humiliating Britain to avoid a poisonous relationship 
PM was resigned to longer period if EU leaders demanded it - to the fury of hardline Brexiteers at home
Macron wants UK to lose EU voting rights on budgets and trade with 'good behaviour' checks every quarter  
By DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT and MARTIN ROBINSON CHIEF REPORTER and TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 09:10, 10 April 2019 | UPDATED: 23:41, 10 April 2019
Theresa May has reportedly been handed a humiliating Halloween Brexit nightmare with EU leaders agreeing to delay the UK’s departure until October 31 at a crunch summit tonight.
The six-month extension would be accompanied by a review in June, according to a Reuters source, dashing the hopes of the Prime Minister, who had begged them to postpone our departure only until the end of that month.
The date is seen as a compromise between the majority of the EU 27 leaders who wanted to delay Brexit until the end of the year or March 202, and France's Emmanuel Macron, who emerged as a vocal opponent to a long extension.  
Reuters had quoted a diplomatic source who said Mr Macron wants to actually offer Mrs May roughly what she wants, telling his counterparts a delay past June 30 would undermine the EU.
The source suggested the French were being 'annoying, just posturing to show how important and powerful they are'.
They added: 'He is in a bit of a schizophrenic situation - (his) domestic audience demands that he is tough on Britain for historic reasons.
On the other hand, France is among the most-hit in any no-deal Brexit. It will take hours before we pull him down from his tree.'
Sources suggested that as many as 17 of the 27 had wanted a much longer delay. But the October 31 date would be a rough half-way compromise between the two.
The Prime Minister spent a little more than an hour this evening in a question and answer session at the emergency meeting before being kicked out while they decide the UK's fate over a lavish seafood dinner. 
She addressed the European Council session in the Belgian capital after president Macron had warned her that he was 'impatient' and that a long Brexit delay was not guaranteed.
He appeared to wink today as he arrived in the EU's core - after being urged not to 'humiliate' the Prime Minister. 
He was set to demand the UK is subjected to a number of punitive conditions with a Christmas deadline to finally quit the trade bloc, but also raised the spectre of a no-deal Brexit, possibly on Friday.
Speaking to reporters ahead of the start of the emergency meeting of national leaders he warned that 'nothing is settled', including a long delay, and he was 'impatient' to hear what Mrs May had to say.
'We must understand today why this request, what is the political project which justifies it and what are the clear proposals?' he said. 
'It is 34 months since the British referendum, and the key for us is that we are able to pursue the European project in a coherent way.
'I believe deeply that we are carrying out a European rebirth, and I don't want the subject of Brexit to get in the way of that.'   
MORE https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6906321/President-Macrons-ambitions-embarrass-UK-year-long-Brexit-delay.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
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Post  Admin on Sun 07 Apr 2019, 5:38 pm

Forget the 'end is nigh' scaremongering – Britain is officially ready for no-deal Brexit
CHRIS HEATON-HARRIS
Follow  5 APRIL 2019 • 10:00PM
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/04/05/forget-end-nigh-scaremongering-britain-officially-ready-no/?fbclid=IwAR0KOHRVm8YWQYWlDPVCO9onIu2-w3pWQbwWlGd3YNFMAUxPTLQtHIs1P18
 A driver looks on next to stopped trucks on the A16 highway, trying to make their way to the Channel Tunnel, near Calais, northern France, on March 14, 2019, before embarking on a shuttle to Britain. - French customs officials striking for better pay and more staff, for the extra work expected with Brexit, turned down an offer of 14 million euros from the government on March 13, 2019, saying it was not enough. They began their protest on March 4, 2019, to press their demands for higher pay and demonstrate what will happen if greater controls are put in place if Britain leaves the European Union, leading to queues of several kilometres (miles) long
CREDIT:  DENIS CHARLET/ AFP
 
So why do MPs want to take it off the table?
On Wednesday I resigned from Government. My role as a minister in the Brexit department, helping to coordinate our preparations for if the UK needed to leave the EU without a negotiated deal, had been made irrelevant by decisions in Government.

Our preparations for this eventuality were very well advanced. Hundreds of civil servants had been working for over two years to ensure we would be ready; but parliamentarians and others who are doing everything they can to stop Brexit needed to maintain a narrative that leaving without a deal would be a “disaster” for jobs and our economy.

Most of these “end of the world is nigh” stories originate in the...
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Post  Admin on Mon 01 Apr 2019, 12:12 am

Brexit Betrayal Day: Parliament Rejects Theresa May’s Last Ditch Fight For EU-Approved ‘Deal’
212
GettyImages-1133492138Getty Images
OLIVER JJ LANE29 Mar 20191,879
25:31
Britain’s House of Commons has voted to reject Theresa May’s so-called Withdrawal Agreement just hours before the nation was supposed to leave the European Union, with or without a deal — a deadline betrayed this week by Parliament after they voted to postpone Brexit months or even years into the future.
Britain’s lawmakers have already voted against the settlement the Prime Minister agreed with the European Union twice, and the government was blocked from bringing it to Parliament again. Yet by splitting the deal into two pieces, the ‘Brexit in name only‘ apparently comes before Parliament again as a different vote in spirit only.

Read the latest updates below — refresh your browser to see more
UPDATE 1830 — Nigel speaks to the rally
Nigel Farage has struck an optimistic note on this day of Brexit betrayal, telling the Parliament square rally:
I can’t think of any time in history, where a greater betrayal of a democratic vote has ever happened in the Western world, and they can tonight over there content themselves because they think they’re winning. But that’s because they live in the Westminster bubble. We’re the real people of this country, and we know that the referendum was the first of many great victories.
We will get our country back, we will get out independence back, we will get out pride and self-respect back. We are going to win!
MORE https://www.breitbart.com/europe/2019/03/29/brexit-betrayal-day-parliament-votes-on-theresa-mays-last-ditch-fight-for-eu-approved-deal/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_term=daily&utm_content=links&utm_campaign=20190329#
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Post  Admin on Sat 30 Mar 2019, 1:42 pm

Britain is plunged into more chaos as May LOSES Brexit vote by 344 to 286: PM hints at election as she admits she fears 'MPs are reaching the limits of the process' after 28 hardcore Tory Brexiteers cost her victory
Theresa May's deal faced a make-or-break vote and will warn not to vote for it would be a 'betrayal' of public   
Her withdrawal agreement received 286 votes from MPs but 344 were against it - a deficit of 58 votes
34 Tory rebels - 28 Brexiteers and six remainers - while only five Labour MPs sided with the PM in Commons
Boris Johnson had thrown his weight behind the deal - but hardcore Brexiteers said no to 'surrender' to EU 
ERG leader Steve Baker said: 'The deal will not pass. It's time for Theresa May to make way for a new leader'
Prime Minister could be forced to call a General Election as early as next week as UK heads for softer Brexit
Her official spokesman also did not deny Mrs May could bring her deal back for a fourth vote before April 12
By MARTIN ROBINSON, CHIEF REPORTER and TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 09:51, 29 March 2019 | UPDATED: 18:49, 29 March 2019
Theresa May's Brexit is in tatters today - and Tory rebels are already calling on her to quit - after her deal was defeated in the Commons by 58 votes.
The Prime Minister has now hinted she will consider calling a general election after the 'grave' result and said: 'I fear we are reaching the limits of the process in this House.' 
Mrs May had begged the Commons 'with all her heart' to back her deal but her motion was rejected by 344 votes to 286 - a majority of 58.
If the 28 hardcore Tory Brexiteers who deserted her today had backed the deal the PM would have only been two votes short of victory, and the momentum would have been with her. Many accused the hardcore anti-EU MPs, who have dubbed themselves Spartans, of losing the very thing they have been fighting for through their intransigence.   
Six Conservative remain rebels and 10 DUP MPs also refused to side with Mrs May - while only five Labour MPs were willing to defy Jeremy Corbyn.

Britain now faces at least two more weeks of chaos as MPs on Monday start to try and force a soft Brexit in 'indicative votes'.

They will try and arrive at a majority for one option, most likely a customs union and a second referendum, before passing laws to force it on the PM.

But at the same time May is expected to use that looming threat to win backing for her deal by before Britain is due to leave the EU on April 12.

The Prime Minister has signalled she is not willing to take Britain out without a deal, and if no agreement is reached by April 12 will likely agree to a long delay.

Her comments hinting at an election could mean she would then step down to allow a new Tory leader to take over following a 12-week leadership contest and then possibly call an election. Or she could call snap election within six weeks if two-thirds of MPs back her.

No 10 has warned a third defeat meant up to five years trapped inside the EU and European Council president Donald Tusk has now called an emergency summit of leaders in Brussels on April 10 to discuss the implications of the vote. 

That will infuriate the 28 hardcore Brexiteer Tory rebels who voted against her including Mark Francois, Steve Baker and Suella Braverman. The other six rebels are remainers including Dominic Grieve and Boris Johnson's brother Jo.

Hinting at a general election three years early, Theresa May told the Commons: 'I fear we are reaching the limits of this process in this House. This House has rejected no-deal. It has rejected no Brexit. On Wednesday it rejected all the variations of the deal on the table, and today it has rejected approving the Withdrawal Agreement alone and continuing a process on the future'.

Afterwards her official spokesman refused three times to deny that a general election is now on the table. He also did not deny Mrs May could bring her deal back for a fourth vote before April 12.

As the result came in thousands of pro-Brexit protesters gathered in Parliament Square chanting 'disgrace', 'shame on you' and 'we want Brexit now' at the culmination of a 270-mile march from Sunderland that started a fortnight ago.  

Theresa May heads back to Downing Street after her deal was defeated for a third time and hinted that a general election is an option +44
READ MORE Britain is plunged into more chaos as May LOSES Brexit vote by 344 to 286: PM hints at election as she admits she fears 'MPs are reaching the limits of the process' after 28 hardcore Tory Brexiteers cost her victory
Theresa May's deal faced a make-or-break vote and will warn not to vote for it would be a 'betrayal' of public   
Her withdrawal agreement received 286 votes from MPs but 344 were against it - a deficit of 58 votes
34 Tory rebels - 28 Brexiteers and six remainers - while only five Labour MPs sided with the PM in Commons
Boris Johnson had thrown his weight behind the deal - but hardcore Brexiteers said no to 'surrender' to EU 
ERG leader Steve Baker said: 'The deal will not pass. It's time for Theresa May to make way for a new leader'
Prime Minister could be forced to call a General Election as early as next week as UK heads for softer Brexit
Her official spokesman also did not deny Mrs May could bring her deal back for a fourth vote before April 12
By MARTIN ROBINSON, CHIEF REPORTER and TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 09:51, 29 March 2019 | UPDATED: 18:49, 29 March 2019
Theresa May's Brexit is in tatters today - and Tory rebels are already calling on her to quit - after her deal was defeated in the Commons by 58 votes.

The Prime Minister has now hinted she will consider calling a general election after the 'grave' result and said: 'I fear we are reaching the limits of the process in this House.' 

Mrs May had begged the Commons 'with all her heart' to back her deal but her motion was rejected by 344 votes to 286 - a majority of 58.

If the 28 hardcore Tory Brexiteers who deserted her today had backed the deal the PM would have only been two votes short of victory, and the momentum would have been with her. Many accused the hardcore anti-EU MPs, who have dubbed themselves Spartans, of losing the very thing they have been fighting for through their intransigence.   
Six Conservative remain rebels and 10 DUP MPs also refused to side with Mrs May - while only five Labour MPs were willing to defy Jeremy Corbyn.
Britain now faces at least two more weeks of chaos as MPs on Monday start to try and force a soft Brexit in 'indicative votes'.

They will try and arrive at a majority for one option, most likely a customs union and a second referendum, before passing laws to force it on the PM.
But at the same time May is expected to use that looming threat to win backing for her deal by before Britain is due to leave the EU on April 12.

The Prime Minister has signalled she is not willing to take Britain out without a deal, and if no agreement is reached by April 12 will likely agree to a long delay.
Her comments hinting at an election could mean she would then step down to allow a new Tory leader to take over following a 12-week leadership contest and then possibly call an election. Or she could call snap election within six weeks if two-thirds of MPs back her.

No 10 has warned a third defeat meant up to five years trapped inside the EU and European Council president Donald Tusk has now called an emergency summit of leaders in Brussels on April 10 to discuss the implications of the vote. 
That will infuriate the 28 hardcore Brexiteer Tory rebels who voted against her including Mark Francois, Steve Baker and Suella Braverman. The other six rebels are remainers including Dominic Grieve and Boris Johnson's brother Jo.

Hinting at a general election three years early, Theresa May told the Commons: 'I fear we are reaching the limits of this process in this House. This House has rejected no-deal. It has rejected no Brexit. On Wednesday it rejected all the variations of the deal on the table, and today it has rejected approving the Withdrawal Agreement alone and continuing a process on the future'.

Afterwards her official spokesman refused three times to deny that a general election is now on the table. He also did not deny Mrs May could bring her deal back for a fourth vote before April 12.
As the result came in thousands of pro-Brexit protesters gathered in Parliament Square chanting 'disgrace', 'shame on you' and 'we want Brexit now' at the culmination of a 270-mile march from Sunderland that started a fortnight ago.  
Theresa May heads back to Downing Street after her deal was defeated for a third time and hinted that a general election is an option +44
READ MORE https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6864069/Geoffrey-Cox-tells-MPs-today-chance-deliver-Brexit-ahead.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small


3rd time no charm: MPs reject Theresa May’s Brexit withdrawal agreement
Published time: 29 Mar, 2019 14:42
Edited time: 30 Mar, 2019 08:48
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3rd time no charm: MPs reject Theresa May’s Brexit withdrawal agreement
British MPs have rejected Theresa May’s Brexit withdrawal agreement despite its separation from the rest of the deal. It’s the third humiliating defeat for the prime minister on what was supposed to be the day Britain left the EU.
The MPs voted down the agreement 344-286 – with a margin of 58 votes. May apparently failed to convince enough Conservative rebels, and the DUP said it would not vote for her deal, be it the full text or only the withdrawal part.

Following the vote, Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn and the SNP’s Ian Blackford called on May to accept the will of parliament and to resign. Both called for a general election to be held.
MORE https://www.rt.com/uk/455077-theresa-may-withdrawal-vote-fails/?utm_source=browser&utm_medium=push_notifications&utm_campaign=push_notifications
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Post  Admin on Thu 28 Mar 2019, 12:49 am

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6853827/Explained-tomorrows-key-votes-work-Brexit-options-MPs-decide-on.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
MPs are planning to seize control of the parliamentary timetable again
They have between revoking article 50, no deal and others to choose between
Politicians tabled 16 different plans and John Bercow is likely to pick six to 10
Votes will start at 7pm using a new ballot paper system with results around 9pm
MPs can back as many or as few of the proposals as they like in tonight's contest 
By TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 22:38, 26 March 2019 | UPDATED: 17:03, 27 March 2019

View comments

MPs are in control of Brexit today after seizing the Commons order paper for the first time in modern history - and have within a matter of hours devised a new system to vote on the nation's future.

There will be 'indicative votes' on up to 16 different plans for Brexit from 7pm tonight - just two days before Britain was originally due to leave the EU.

MPs will vote on eight different plans - ranging from cancelling Brexit altogether to leaving with No Deal on April 12 - in a desperate scramble to find a consensus.  

The results are due around 9pm and will almost certainly be contradictory - and it is very possible MPs support no plans at all. 

The details of the process have been drawn up in a matter of hours after rebels finally won control of the Commons late on Monday night.

Yesterday there was still no decision even on what colour the ballots will be - the normal pink for ballot box Commons votes or something different. It was ruled today the papers will be green. 

Once handed their papers MPs will be asked to vote yes or no to each plan. They can support as many as they like. The votes are public like any other division so it is impossible to rig the choice.  

After 7.30pm, Commons clerks will scramble to count the votes all at once - a process expected to take at least an hour and potentially longer. 

The landmark moment amid the Brexit chaos began soon after PMQs - and must start by 2pm.

The first phase will be an arcane debate on the exact rules for tonight's votes, including almost certainly a last ditch effort to call the whole thing off.

At around 3pm, Speaker John Bercow will select from the 16 draft proposals which ones will actually be voted on. He is expected to choose six to 10 ideas for a debate that will run until 7pm. 

Unlike a normal Commons vote, the House will then be suspended for the brand new procedure. MPs will have 30 minutes to fill in a ballot paper before voting in a box in the No lobby. 

During the count, MPs will also debate and vote changing British law to reflect exit on Friday has been cancelled. 

Mrs May has said she will not necessarily be bound by the results - particularly if they are 'undeliverable' by the EU.  

May 'on the brink of naming exit date': PM could announce...

'I WILL back May's deal': Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg...
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The Brexit options that MPs are poised to vote on tonight: 

Revoke Article 50

Put forward by SNP's Joanna Cherry and backed by 33 MPs including Conservative former attorney general Dominic Grieve, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable, Labour's Ben Bradshaw and all 11 members of The Independent Group. 


It demands that if no deal has been agreed on the day before Brexit that MPs will get the chance to cancel the UK's notice to Brussels it would leave the EU.

Britain is allowed to unilaterally cancel Article 50 and stay a member on its current terms, according to a ruling of the European Court. It would bring an end to the existing negotiations - but would not legally rule them being restarted. 

Second referendum

Tabled by Labour ex-foreign secretary Margaret Beckett to build on proposals from Labour MPs Peter Kyle and Phil Wilson.

It states that MPs will not sanction leaving the EU unless it has been put to the electorate for a 'confirmatory vote'.

A significant evolution of the plan is it would put any deal agreed by the Government to a public vote and not just Mrs May's plan. 

Customs union 

Tabled by veteran Conservative Europhile Ken Clarke, backed by Labour's Yvette Cooper, Helen Goodman and chair of the Commons Exiting the EU Committee Hilary Benn and Tory former ministers Sir Oliver Letwin and Sarah Newton. 

There is a further customs union amendment tabled by Labour's Gareth Snell and other Labour leavers. 

It demands that ministers negotiate a new 'permanent and comprehensive UK-wide customs union with the EU" which would prevent the country being able to strike its own trade deals but make it easier for goods to move between the UK and Europe. 

Labour's plan

Proposed by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

It includes a comprehensive customs union but with a UK say on future trade deals and close alignment with the single market.

The plan also demands matching new EU rights and protections; participation in EU agencies and funding programmes; and agreement on future security arrangements, including access to the European Arrest Warrant.

No deal 

Proposed by Eurosceptic Tory MP John Baron.

Tabled a motion demanding 'the UK will leave the EU on 12 April 2019' without a deal. However, a No Deal Brexit has already been rejected twice by MPs.

It would instruct the Government to abandon efforts to secure its deal and inform the EU it did not want a long extension to Article 50 either, in line with last week's EU Council. Both sides would then have a fortnight to make final preparations.  

Common Market 2.0   


Tabled by Conservatives Nick Boles, Robert Halfon and Andrew Percy and Labour's Stephen Kinnock, Lucy Powell and Diana Johnson.

The motion proposes UK membership of the European Free Trade Association and European Economic Area.

It allows continued participation in the single market and a 'comprehensive customs arrangement' with the EU after Brexit. It would be very similar to current membership.

The idea is this would remain in place until the agreement of a wider trade deal which guarantees frictionless movement of goods and an open border in Ireland.

Malthouse Compromise 

This is a cross-party proposal calls for Theresa May's Withdrawal Agreement to be implemented with the controversial 'backstop' for the Irish border replaced by alternative arrangements.

Backed by Conservatives from both the Leave and Remain wings of the party, including Nicky Morgan, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Damian Green, Steve Baker and Sir Graham Brady, as well as the DUP's Nigel Dodds and Labour Brexiteer Kate Hoey.

The proposals have already been rejected by the EU.

Single Market 

Tory former minister George Eustice - who quit as agriculture minister this month to fight for Brexit - proposes remaining within the EEA and rejoining EFTA, but remaining outside a customs union with the EU.

The motion was also signed by Conservative MPs including former minister Nicky Morgan and head of the Brexit Delivery Group Simon Hart.

The idea would keep the UK in the European Economic Area (EEA), but unlike the Common Market 2.0 plan would not involve a customs arrangement. It is similar to Norway's deal.
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Post  Admin on Thu 21 Mar 2019, 4:17 pm

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6829683/Juncker-signals-Theresa-win-vote-deal-EU-grants-Brexit-delay.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
May asks the EU for a Brexit extension until June 30 as she says delay is a 'matter of personal regret' and demands MPs 'get on with it' and back her deal before voters lose all trust in Parliament
The European Council President made the statement after speaking to Theresa May this afternoon
It came after French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Paris might block an extension to Article 50 
Told politicians in Paris Mrs May needs to make a strong case in Brussels tomorrow or leave without a deal
European Commission wants UK gone before EU elections on May 23 or kept in the EU for nine more months 
EC president Juncker earlier warned PM suggested 'we will probably have to meet again next week'
By DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT and TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE and JOE MIDDLETON FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 09:07, 20 March 2019 | UPDATED: 07:29, 21 March 2019
Theresa May has confirmed this evening she is asking the EU for a Brexit extension until June 30 and implored MPs to back her deal before voters lose faith in Parliament.

In an abrupt statement inside No.10 Theresa May said it was a matter of 'great personal regret' the country would not be leaving the EU on time with a deal on March 29.
The Prime Minister also attacked MPs for failing to make headway with Brexit and said it was 'high time' politicians made a decision.

Today's summit in Brussels now looks certain to set the stage for an historic and pivotal week in British politics as the Brexit endgame goes right down to the wire.
If no delay or deal is agreed with the EU before Friday, the law says Britain will leave without a deal - despite years of dire warnings about its impact on Britain.
If May's deal fails, the EU has not ruled out offering a longer delay but this would likely come with preconditions such as a second referendum. Alternatively they could choose to let the UK crash out of the bloc.
In a direct appeal to the nation and a clear warning shot to squabbling politicians, Mrs May said: 'Of this, I am absolutely sure. You the public have had enough. 
'You are tired of the infighting, you're tired of the political games and the arcane procedural rows, tired of MPs talking about nothing else but Brexit when you have real concerns about our children's schools, our National Health Service, knife crime.
'You want this stage of the Brexit process to be over and done with. I agree. I am on your side. It is now time for MPs to decide.'
Mrs May again ruled out a second referendum and argued she would not seek a lengthier extension to the Brexit exit as the country would then have to fight European elections, something she said would be 'bitter' and 'divisive' for the country.
Video playing bottom right...
Prime Minister Theresa May making a statement about Brexit in Downing Street this evening. She confirmed Britain will not be leaving the EU on March 29 and Mrs May will seek an extension on the the UK's Brexit withdrawal until June 30

Donald Tusk made a short speech in Brussels today after speaking to Theresa May by telephone and following talks with EU leaders over the past week
Theresa May (pictured tonight leaving Downing Street) has today admitted she has asked the EU to delay Brexit - having said 108 times Britain would leave on March 29
A smiling Michael Gove leads a charge of Brexiteer cabinet ministers leaving Downing Street including Chris Grayling, Liam Fox, Penny Mordaunt, Andrea Leadsom and Liz Truss (left to right) today after being summoned by Theresa May

In the Commons at PMQs today (pictured) Theresa May condemned MPs for 'navel gazing' over Europe and said their refusal to pass the deal was to blame for delay 
Mrs May came under fire from both sides of the Commons as she scrambled to shore up both her own political future and Britain's exit from the EU 
She added: 'So far, Parliament has done everything possible to avoid making a choice.

'Motion after motion and amendment after amendment has been tabled without Parliament ever deciding what it wants.

'All MPs have been willing to say is what they do not want.

'I passionately hope MPs will find a way to back the deal I've negotiated with the EU, a deal that delivers on the result of the referendum and is the very best deal negotiable.

'And I will continue to work night and day to secure the support of my colleagues, the DUP and others for this deal.

'But I am not prepared to delay Brexit any further than the 30th of June.'

The Prime Minister's speech in full
The Prime Minister blamed for MPs for the country's Brexit chaos this evening

The Prime Minister addressed the nation from Downing Street on Wednesday night. Here is what she said:

'Nearly three years have passed since the public voted to leave the European Union.

'It was the biggest democratic exercise in our country's history.

'I came to office on a promise to deliver on that verdict.

'In March 2017 I triggered the Article 50 process for the UK to exit the EU and Parliament supported it overwhelmingly.

'Two years on, MPs have been unable to agree on a way to implement the UK's withdrawal.

'As a result, we will now not leave on time with a deal on the 29th of March.

'This delay is a matter of great personal regret for me.

'And of this I am absolutely sure: You, the public, have had enough.

'You're tired of the infighting, you're tired of the political games and the arcane procedural rows, tired of MPs talking about nothing else but Brexit when you have real concerns about our children's schools, our National Health Service, knife crime.

'You want this stage of the Brexit process to be over and done with. I agree. I am on your side.

'It is now time for MPs to decide.

'So, today, I have written to Donald Tusk the President of the European Council to request a short extension of Article 50 up to the 30th of June to give MPs the time to make a final choice.

'Do they want to leave the EU with a deal which delivers on the result of the referendum, that takes control of our money borders and laws while protecting jobs and our national security?

'Do they want to leave without a deal, or do they not want to leave at all causing potentially irreparable damage to public trust not just in this generation of politicians but to our entire democratic process?

'It is high time we made a decision.

'So far, Parliament has done everything possible to avoid making a choice.

'Motion after motion and amendment after amendment has been tabled without Parliament ever deciding what it wants.

'All MPs have been willing to say is what they do not want.

'I passionately hope MPs will find a way to back the deal I've negotiated with the EU, a deal that delivers on the result of the referendum and is the very best deal negotiable.

'And I will continue to work night and day to secure the support of my colleagues, the DUP and others for this deal.

'But I am not prepared to delay Brexit any further than the 30th of June.

'Some argue that I'm making the wrong choice and I should ask for a longer extension to the end of the year or beyond to give more time for politicians to argue over the way forward.

'That would mean asking you to vote in European elections nearly three years after our country decided to leave.

'What kind of message would that send? And just how bitter and divisive would that election campaign be at a time when the country desperately needs bringing back together.

'Some have suggested holding a second referendum.

'I don't believe that's what you want and it is not what I want.

'We asked you the question already and you've given us your answer.

'Now you want us to get on with it.

'And that is what I am determined to do.'

Meanwhile Jeremy Corbyn pulled out of talks with other opposition party leaders and the Prime Minister earlier this evening after members of the breakaway Independent Group turned up to the meeting.

Chuka Umunna, the Independent Group spokesman, said it was 'extraordinary behaviour in a national crisis' by the Labour leader.

Government sources last night indicated Mrs May would make a third – and probably final – attempt to persuade MPs to approve her deal next week, possibly as soon as Monday.

 Ministers still hope they can win the backing of the DUP and persuade more moderate Eurosceptics to back the deal. But they have all but abandoned hope of persuading the two dozen Brexit hardliners holding out for No Deal.

Instead they are focusing on Labour MPs, particularly those in Leave-supporting areas, who they believe might reluctantly back Mrs May’s plan rather than allow the UK to crash out next week.

Last night some MPs suggested her comments could backfire, with one warning they could spark attacks on MPs.

Speaking in Brussels today Mr Tusk said: 'In the light of the consultations that I have conducted over the past days, I believe that a short extension would be possible.

'But it would be conditional on a positive vote on the Withdrawal Agreement in the House of Commons. 'The question remains open as to the duration of such an extension.'

Eurosceptic Cabinet ministers were pictured leaving Downing Street in a seemingly jovial mood before Tusk's announcement amid claims some had threatened to resign last night if Mrs May had pushed for a delay of nine-months. 

Their rebellion yesterday forced the PM to shelve plans to ask for a longer delay, while the Commons is seemingly still deadlocked with no majority for a deal.    

Mr Tusk added: 'If the leaders approve my recommendations and there is a positive vote in the House of Commons next week, we can finalise and formalise the decision on extension in the written procedure.

'However, if there is such a need, I will not hesitate to invite the members of the European Council for a meeting to Brussels next week.'

In a major headache for May Speaker John Bercow said on Monday she could not put the same meaningful vote to MPs again after they rejected it twice, limiting her room for maneuver as she tries to break the constitutional deadlock.

Eurosceptics including Michael Gove, Andrea Leadsom, Liam Fox, Liz Truss and Penny Mordaunt all left Downing Street together amid claims some had threatened to resign last night if Mrs May had pushed for a delay of nine-months. 

The PM has also invited the leaders of the opposition parties including Jeremy Corbyn to discuss her Brexit delay at a 6pm meeting in Downing Street before heading back to Parliament to address her backbenchers and urge them to vote for her divorce. 

But Remainers were less upbeat, with Tory former attorney general Dominic Grieve QC warning the Government's credibility 'is running out'.

He said: 'When ... the Prime Minister came to the despatch box today at PMQs, I confess I think it was the worst moment I have experienced since I came into the House of Commons. 

'I have never felt more ashamed to be a member of the Conservative Party or to be asked to lend her support.'

He added: 'We really are, I'm sorry to say this, at the 11th hour and 59th minute, the Government's credibility is running out, trust in it is running out and unless ... the Prime Minister by some great exertion of will, and she has plenty of will and plenty of robustness, stands up and starts doing something different, we are going to spiral down into oblivion and the worst part of it all is that we will deserve it.'

Some MPs reacted with frustration on Twitter after the Prime Minister announced she would attempt to extend Article 50 until June 30 and proposed a third meaningful vote on her Brexit deal.

Labour's former minister Yvette Cooper said Mrs May was 'in the worst state of denial'.

'Truly shocking,' she tweeted.

'This is a Prime Minister in the worst state of denial, refusing to listen to anyone, just still doing the same thing again and again, no plan B, heading stubbornly towards the cliff edge.'

Former Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron claimed Parliament is 'dancing to the tune of extremists' rather than listening to ordinary people.

'And there's the problem in a nutshell - the PM listens to (Brexiteer Tory MP Peter) Bone not Britain. We are dancing to the tune of extremists, not listening to the people.

Mrs May last night abandoned her plan to ask the EU for a nine-month Brexit delay or longer after furious Brexiteer cabinet ministers threatened to quit and told her the Tory party would only accept a wait until June. 

This morning she spoke to Mr Juncker who reportedly told her that the EU would only consider a shorter extension until May 22 to avoid Britain having to take part in European elections - or the delay will have to be up to two years.   

The PM has now published the letter sent to Donald Tusk today, which says Britain needs a delay until June 30 to pass and legislate for her deal - and it also blasts Commons Speaker John Bercow for making it 'impossible' to hold a third meaningful vote on her deal before the summit. 

She appealed for the EU Council – which includes the leaders of all EU states – to formally adopt the three extra documents agreed with Mr Juncker last week to pass Mr Bercow's ruling on a new vote being on a 'substantially different' purpose. 

Mrs May's letter said: 'If the motion is passed, I am confident that Parliament will proceed to ratify the deal constructively. But this will clearly not be completed before March 29, 2019.'

Admitting the timetable was 'uncertain' she said: 'I am therefore writing to inform the European Council that the UK is seeking an extension to the Article 50 until June 30 2019.' 

But that prompted France to warn it might block any request by Theresa May to delay Brexit unless she can give EU leaders 'guarantees' that it will lead to MPs passing a withdrawal deal.

So Brexit has come to this: As May pleads for a three month Brexit delay this is what happens next 
What is May asking for at the summit tomorrow? 

The Prime Minister wants the EU Council to rubberstamp the extra three documents she agreed with the EU Commission on the backstop last week.

She hopes this, combined with new promises at home on a role for the Northern Ireland Assembly, will be enough to convince John Bercow to allow a third vote on her deal.

Mrs May will ask the EU to give her a three month extension to deliver the deal with these commitments. 

Will she get it? 

Probably - but only on condition MPs pass the deal next week.

Donald Tusk announced today a short extension was 'possible' but that the details still needed to be hammered out.

There are tricky issues:  

First, the bloc only wants a short extension to run until May 23 - the date of European Parliament elections in the UK. It will insist Britain is out of the bloc if it has no MEPs. 

Second, it has said there must be a clear reason for delay. This could be time to implement the agreed deal or time for an election or referendum that might set a new path for Brexit.  

How is Brexit delayed, if the EU agrees? 

To change the law, the Government would have to get a law change through Parliament.

This can be done with a Statutory Instrument - a simple short piece of law - that tweaks the EU Withdrawal Act 2018 to change the current date to something else.

In an emergency, it could likely be got through the Commons and Lords in two days - and conceivably a single day assuming there were votes to win procedural changes.

What happens if Brussels says No? 

This unlocks a number of possible scenarios. 

First, Mrs May could come home and try and get her deal agreed by MPs anyway.

Second, she could accept her deal is dead and invite MPs to choose a different course.

Third, the Prime Minister could say Britain now has no choice but to leave the EU with no deal.  

Will there be a second EU summit if there are no conclusions tomorrow?  

Possibly. If the EU sends Mrs May home to come up with a concrete plan, they could agree to an emergency second summit next week. 

Organised EU summits is difficult - it requires 28 national leaders to turn up - but the EU is eager for Britain to leave with a deal. 

It means if Mrs May can get her deal through, leaders might reconvene to green light a short delay at the 11th hour. If she gets a Commons vote on an alternative plan, such as a referendum, she could ask them to meet again for a longer delay. 

Will there be a third meaningful vote and if so when?  

Mrs May has told the EU she wants a third vote 'as soon as possible' if they agree to give her a delay. 

This now looks certain to be early next week - if Speaker John Bercow agrees. He has insisted a new motion must be 'substantially' different.   

Mr Bercow alone will make this ruling and it is impossible to predict.  

What happens if the deal is defeated again?  

This also unlocks a number of possible consequences.

First, given the proximity of exit day a third defeat next week would dramatically raise the risk of a No Deal Brexit on Friday. This could easily trigger a vote of no confidence in the Government - forcing pro-EU Tories to choose between voting with Jeremy Corbyn or accepting No Deal.

Second, Mrs May has said if MPs continue rejecting the deal they will have to choose an alternative path. The Government would probably hold an indicative vote on the various options and hope for a longer delay at the last minute.

Third, Mrs May could simply resign and hand the mess over to someone else in acknowledgement her flagship policy has fallen to historic failure.

Fourth, if she already has a delay agreed by Brussels she could keep pressing on in the hope something comes up.    
This is Theresa May's letter to Donald Tusk begging for a delay and asking them for help to ensure her deal can be voted on for a third time after John Bercow made it 'impossible' not

Brexit or bust! Smiling Brexiteer Cabinet rebels leave No 10...

HENRY DEEDES sees the European Union's maddening man Michel...

So Brexit has come to this: As May pleads for a three month...
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Jeremy Corbyn will go to Brussels TOMORROW to meet Michel Barnier hours before Theresa May faces EU leaders to ask for a Brexit delay  
Mr Corbyn will meet Michel Barnier tomorrow morning, giving him an opportunity to put across his Brexit views hours before Mrs May faces the EU27 leaders at what is likely to be a stormy European Council meeting 

Jeremy Corbyn will meet the EU's chief Brexit negotiator tomorrow just hours before Theresa May faces European leaders.

In a development that will pour fresh pressure on the Prime Minister the opposition leader will met Michel Barnier in Brussels on Thursday morning, the Guardian reported.

The meeting will give Mr Corbyn a chance to put forward Labour's alternative Brexit plan and also discuss the possibility of a second referendum taking place.

Mr Corbyn yesterday met with the Westminster leaders of the other opposition parties to discuss a new vote, which resulted in a request to swing behind a referendum and stop 'prevaricating'.

But he also later met with MPs who support a soft Brexit that would keep Britain closely aligned with the EU, potentially including retaining freedom of movement.

Mr Barnier yesterday tore into Theresa May's attempt to keep her delay options open by suggesting she must present leaders this week with a clear idea how the UK wants to stay in.

Michel Barnier told reporters today that any longer extension to Article 50 would only be considered if there was 'a new political process' in the UK to justify it.

At a Brussels press conference Mr Barnier stressed that it was ultimately a decision for EU27 leaders at the European Council meeting on Thursday, he said: 'The EU authorities want to know what the underlying political process which would be the grounds for that extension would be - political process within the House of Commons or in the general political debate in the UK.'

Mr Barnier added: 'It is our duty to ask whether this extension would be useful because an extension will be something which would extend uncertainty, and uncertainty costs.'
He added: 'What would be the purpose and outcome? How could we be sure that at the end of a possible extension we are not back in the same situation as today?'
Foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told the parliament in Paris that Mrs May would need to make an incredibly strong case at a meeting of EU leaders in Brussels on Thursday.

The Prime Minister revealed in the Commons this afternoon that she had written to the EU to ask for an extension to allow more time to pass a deal.
Mr Le Drian told French MPs: 'A situation in which Mrs May would not be able to present to the European Council sufficient guarantees about the credibility of her strategy would lead to the extension request being dismissed and opting for a no-deal exit.'

The Brexit delay has split Mrs May's cabinet with pro-Brexit ministers in triumphant mood while outraged Remainer ministers today said it was Mrs May's 'most craven surrender to the hardliners yet'. The plan she is pursuing was branded 'downright reckless' by her deputy David Lidington just a week ago. 

Announcing she was seeking an extension to Article 50 to June 30, Mrs May told the Commons: 'The Government intends to bring forward proposals for a third meaningful vote.
'If that vote is passed the extension will give the House time to consider the Withdrawal Agreement Bill. If not, the House will have to decide how to proceed'.

Hinting at her own departure of her deal falls and Britain seeks a longer delay she added: 'As Prime Minister I am not prepared to delay Brexit any further than June 30'. 

The Prime Minister strongly suggested the UK will leave without a deal if her deal is not agreed at the end of her planned extension in June.

At PMQs, Tory MP Richard Drax asked: 'If this extension happens what guarantee can you give the British people that by the end of June if we still do not have a deal we honour that referendum result and we leave?'

Mrs May replied: 'If it's the case there is an extension this does not actually take no-deal off the table. It leaves that as a point at the end of that extension.
'I believe it is time we actually delivered on the vote of the British people in 2016.

'As Prime Minister as far as I'm concerned there will be no delay in delivering Brexit beyond June 30.'

Afterwards a No 10 spokesman refused to deny the Prime Minister was threatening to resign if Brexit was going to be delayed beyond June 30.

She said: 'I think it is important that the Prime Minister sends a clear signal about her view on the right way forward. She does not believe a long extension is the right thing to do. What you should infer (from the PM's words) is her determination to get this over the line'.

Jeremy Corbyn said the UK is 'now in the midst of a full-scale national crisis' and called on Theresa May to meet with him to discuss his Brexit proposals.

At Prime Minister's Questions in the Commons the Labour leader said 'incompetence, failure and intransigence from the Prime Minister and her Government have brought us to this point'.

He said with her deal and no-deal both rejected, Mrs May has 'no plan', while he is meeting with other parties and EU leaders to come up with an alternative.

Mr Corbyn asked: 'This is a national crisis. Will the Prime Minister meet me today to discuss our proposals as a way forward to get out of this crisis?'

Mrs May said it was a 'bit rich' for him to invite her for talks when he for 'days and days he refused to meet me'. She added that she was 'always happy to meet members from across this House to discuss Europe'.

Mr Tusk a more conciliatory message in a tweet sent after his speech on Brexit in which he said a delay hinged on a deal being passed by MPs next week +18
Mr Tusk a more conciliatory message in a tweet sent after his speech on Brexit in which he said a delay hinged on a deal being passed by MPs next week

Jean-Yves Le Drian made the warning about Mrs May's chances of getting a Brexit deal in the French parliament today (pictured) +18
 Jean-Yves Le Drian made the warning about Mrs May's chances of getting a Brexit deal in the French parliament today (pictured)

EU bureaucrats earlier demanded the Prime Minister's attempt to delay Brexit until summer be scuppered, saying the UK must leave by late May or stay tied to Europe until the end of the year.

Delaying Brexit is 'betraying the British people' Theresa May is told by TORY backbench Brexiteer Peter Bone who warns her that 'history will judge you at this moment' 
Peter Bone regularly rises to question the Prime Minister at PMQs. The Wellingborough MP is a long term and devout Tory Brexiteer

Theresa May was accused of 'betraying the British people' by seeking a delay to Brexit by one of her own senior backbenchers today.

Hardcore Tory Brexiteer Peter Bone warned his party leader that 'history will judge you at this moment' in a pointed exchange during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons.

The 66-year-old Wellingborough MP's intervention came minutes after Mrs May had confirmed she was asking the EU to delay Brexit until the end of June in order to get a Brexit deal past MPs.

He said: 'If you continue to apply for an extension to Article 50 you will be betraying the British people. If you don't, you will be honouring their instruction.

'Prime Minister, it is entirely down to you. History will judge you at this moment. Prime Minister, which is it to be?'

He also claimed that Mrs May had committed to a March 29 Brexit 108 times in the House of Commons while Prime Minister. 

Mrs May replied: 'I am saying that I think we should look again at being able to leave with a negotiated deal but in order to do that we need time for this Parliament to ratify a deal, and in order to do that we need an extension until June 30.'

As Theresa May rose to tell MPs she has requested Brexit be postponed to June 30, the European Commission said that she should face a 'binary choice' of delaying for less than two months or for a full nine months.

The shorter extension to before May 23 - when European elections are due to be held- was revealed in a briefing note for EU leaders meeting Mrs May at Thursday's European Council meeting, seen by Reuters.

'Any extension offered to the United Kingdom should either last until 23 May 2019 or should be significantly longer and require European elections,' the document said. 

'This is the only way of protecting the functioning of the EU institutions and their ability to take decisions.' 

Mrs May moments earlier had confirmed she had written to European Council president Donald Tusk requesting a delay until June 30. 

A senior official in President Emmanuel Macron's office said on Wednesday that France took note of Mrs May's decision to send the Brexit divorce deal to a third vote in Parliament.

'If the deal is rejected, it would pave the way for the undesirable outcome of a no-deal,' the official said.

'A technical extension could be envisaged to complete legislative work in case of a deal. That's what Mrs May is asking for and will be discussed tomorrow at the European Council.' 

It came after the Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker this morning warned that a decision on an extension to Article 50 might not even happen this week.

He suggested that an emergency summit might be needed next week - potentially just hours before Brexit day - because EU leaders might not approve an extension without a withdrawal deal passed by MPs.  

He said that Mrs May 'must bring approval of the negotiated deal and she must bring clear ideas on timing' to the European Council in Brussels tomorrow or face a humiliating rejection.

Mr Juncker told German broadcaster Deutschlandfunk that the remaining 27 members states' hands were tied until the political indecision in London was resolved.

Mr Juncker (right) greeting European Union chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier today in Brussels. Both men have played a hard line on Britain's prospects of winning an extension to Article 50 from the EU

MAY PREPARES TO GIVE 'STORMONT LOCK' CONCESSION TO D.U.P.
By Jack Doyle, Associate Editor, for the Daily Mail

Theresa May is preparing to offer significant Brexit concessions to the DUP to win their support for her deal, it emerged last night.

In the coming days, the Prime Minister is expected to promise legislation for a ‘Stormont Lock’ – named after the parliament building in Belfast. It would give the Ulster assembly a veto over the decision to enter the backstop if Britain and the EU failed to strike a post-Brexit free trade deal. The lock could also guarantee that any Brussels regulations applied to Northern Ireland would be extended to the whole of the UK – to prevent the need for regulatory checks on goods passing between Great Britain and the province.

In her letter to Donald Tusk, the PM highlighted ‘further domestic proposals’ which would ‘protect our internal market given the concerns expressed about the backstop’. The guarantee would be written into British law rather than the Withdrawal Agreement, which the EU has refused to reopen.

The assembly has been suspended since 2017 following a bitter row between the DUP and Sinn Fein.

The support of the DUP would give Mrs May a huge boost. As well as securing ten votes from DUP MPs, it would also encourage several of the hardline Brexiteers to back her.

'My impression is ... that this week at the European Council there will be no decision, but that we will probably have to meet again next week, because Mrs May doesn't have agreement to anything, either in her Cabinet or in Parliament,' Mr Juncker added.

'As long as we don't know what Britain could say yes to, we can't reach a decision.'

Asked about indications from Downing Street that Mrs May will request a short extension, Mr Juncker told DRF: 'Those months would have to produce, as an end result, an agreement from the British Parliament to the (Agreement) text which is before them.

'If that doesn't happen, and if Great Britain does not leave at the end of March, then we are, I am sorry to say, in the hands of God. And I think even God sometimes reaches a limit to his patience.'  

A European Commission spokesman told the daily press conference in Brussels today that President Juncker had just received a phone call from Theresa May about Article 50.

He said: 'She informed him of the latest state of play around the Article 50 process and consulted the president on how best to approach the European Council. Discussions are ongoing.'

The spokesman added 'nearly all foreseen contingency measures are approved' for a no-deal scenario, with only two outstanding, which are short-term visas and the EU budget for 2019.

In the same interview Mr Juncker insisted that the deal negotiated over two years with Brussels was the remaining members states' final offer.

'Nothing more can be done, we've reached the end of the road,' he said.

'If other scenarios are being discussed, we'd need a new road.'

His interview was the latest attempt by the EU to ramp up the pressure on Mrs May ahead of Thursday's summit in Brussels. 

Andrea Leadsom accused Cabinet Remainers of frustrating Brexit, and hinted she could quit (pictured leaving the meeting on Tuesday) +18
Mrs May's decision to ask for a shorter delay is being seen as a victory for Brexiteers including Penny Mordaunt +18
Andrea Leadsom accused Cabinet Remainers of frustrating Brexit, and hinted she could quit (pictured leaving the meeting on Tuesday)

Speaker John Bercow's bombshell intervention on Monday puts a barricade in Theresa May's path to holding a third meaningful vote on her Brexit deal next week 

 it will only be a short extension. It's absolutely essential we're out of the EU before the European elections'.

She also said John Bercow's ruling to prevent a third vote on Mrs May's deal is 'subordinate to the views of parliament' and said: 'He needs to remain impartial. I've had some questions about it'.
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Post  Admin on Thu 14 Mar 2019, 8:54 pm

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6809979/MPs-vote-AGAINST-second-referendum-time.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
MPs vote 334-85 AGAINST second referendum (for now) as Remainers prepare to seize control and drive Britain toward a soft Brexit as May faces third night of defeat
Speaker John Bercow has selected four amendments to Theresa May's motion on delaying Brexit tonight 
MPs have voted to reject a second referendum after the Labour Party and People's Vote deserted the move  
The most significant amendment is to stage 'indicative' votes on what kind of Brexit Parliament would back   
The votes are all part of a crucial build up to the EU Council next week when May will ask for a delay to Brexit  
Donald Tusk will urge EU leaders to agree a 'long extension' to Article 50 to give Britain time to 'rethink'
By TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE and DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 17:16, 14 March 2019 | UPDATED: 17:28, 14 March 2019
MPs tonight voted against a second referendum on Brexit for the first time as Remain MPs prepare to seize control of the agenda to push Britain to a soft Brexit.
A proposal by the Independent Group to demand a new public vote on Brexit has failed after Labour and even the official People's Vote campaign deserted the move.
The bid for a second referendum was crushed 334 to 85 in a blow to the hopes of campaigners who want a new vote.  
But the Commons is voting now on a more damaging plan to seize control of the Commons agenda next week with the aim of taking over the Brexit process.


https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6809979/MPs-vote-AGAINST-second-referendum-time.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
MPs vote to DELAY Brexit: May WINS Commons showdown and will try to force her deal through a THIRD time next week before asking Brussels to extend Article 50
Speaker John Bercow has selected four amendments to Theresa May's motion on delaying Brexit tonight 
MPs have voted to reject a second referendum after the Labour Party and People's Vote deserted the move  
The most significant amendment is to stage 'indicative' votes on what kind of Brexit Parliament would back   
The votes are all part of a crucial build up to the EU Council next week when May will ask for a delay to Brexit  
Donald Tusk will urge EU leaders to agree a 'long extension' to Article 50 to give Britain time to 'rethink'
By TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE and DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 17:16, 14 March 2019 | UPDATED: 18:45, 14 March 2019
Brexit is set to be delayed from March 29 after MPs voted 412 to 202 in favour of extending Article 50 tonight.

Theresa May appears certain to have a third attempt to get her Brexit deal agreed by MPs early next week but whatever happens will ask the EU for more time at a summit next Thursday.

If her deal does finally get agreed by MPs she will ask for a three month extension and if it does not will seek to agree a longer delay - potentially of up to two years. All EU countries must agree unanimously and could attach conditions. 

After a shattering week of defeat and embarrassment tonight, the Prime Minister won a series of votes tonight to underline her strategy. But she did not escape without deep new splits in her Cabinet after Mrs May was forced to give Tories a free vote on delay. 

The Government defeated by 314 to 312 a cross party amendment from Labour's Hilary Benn and Yvette Cooper with Tory Oliver Letwin wanted to cancel Government business next Wednesday. The PM only won because six Labour and four Independent MPs voted against the Remainer plot. 

Mrs May then won a vote on delaying Brexit beyond March 29 412 to 202. Any delay will still have to be agreed by the European Union.   

MPs earlier voted against a second referendum - crushing it 334 to 85 in the first Commons contest on the idea. 

Talks ahead of the third meaningful vote are focused on using the 1969 Vienna Convention to tweak legal advice - but few think Mrs May can bring 75 rebels back to the fold and over turn Tuesday night's shattering 149-vote defeat.

Brexiteer rebels are incandescent with the Government after Remain ministers abstained last night to let a motion ruling out No Deal forever pass by 43 votes. 

Last night, the Prime Minister told Parliament she must have clarity on what it will support before she meets EU leaders in Brussels next Thursday. 

Mrs May has said if MPs have backed a deal she will ask for a short technical extension that postpones Brexit to the end of June. If they want a more fundamental change of tack she will ask for much more time.

EU leaders must agree unanimously on the terms of delay - and Britain will not get a vote on the decision at the summit.  
Theresa May appears certain to have a third attempt to get her Brexit deal agreed by MPs early next week but whatever happens will ask the EU for more time at a summit next Thursday 

Tory ministers gathered in Downing Street this afternoon for a 'political Cabinet' - a meeting without Civil Servants to discuss the party political ramifications of the Brexit crisis. It is first first time several ministers (including from left Amber Rudd, Greg Clark and David Gauke today) defied orders and abstained on a vote to rule out No Deal last night 

As he opened today's debate on delaying Article 50, Cabinet Office minister David Lidington said MPs would be allowed to choose their preferred Brexit option if they rejected a deal and short extension of the Brexit process in favour of a long extension.

How would indicative votes work?  
Remain MPs are poised to seize control of the Commons agenda today and stage 'indicative votes' on the different Brexit options. 

The idea is to take all viable versions of a Brexit and pit them against each to find the most popular. To qualify as viable, an idea needs backing from at least 25 MPs drawn from five parties.

The amendment tabled today does not specify exactly how the votes work. 

Two possibilities are:  

Normal Commons procedure asks MPs to vote Aye or No to a question. This could be used on a succession of different possibilities - but raises the risk of MPs rejecting everything and causing more chaos.
Veteran Tory MP Ken Clarke has previously suggested using a ballot paper featuring all viable plans and telling MPs to rank them. This would create a best supported plan - but would not prove it commanded a simple majority of MPs. 
He said: 'We basically have two options.

'First, if the House approved a meaningful vote by March 20 and agreed a timetable for the EU Withdrawal Agreement Bill, we could expect the European Union to agree to a short technical extension to allow the necessary legislation to be carried through.

'If that proves, for whatever reason, not to be possible we would be faced with the prospect of choosing only a long extension, during which the House would need to face up to the choices in front of it and the consequences of the decisions that it has taken.

'But the Government recognises the House will require time to consider the potential ways forward in such a scenario.

'In such a scenario the Government, having consulted the usual channels at that time, would facilitate a process in the two weeks after the March European Council to allow the House to seek a majority on the way forward.' 

Ahead of the votes, a People's Vote campaign spokesman said: 'We do not think today is the right time to test the will of the House on the case for a new public vote.

'Instead, this is the time for Parliament to declare it wants an extension of Article 50 so that, after two-and-a-half years of vexed negotiations, our political leaders can finally decide on what Brexit means.' 

In a desperate effort to avoid a third night of humiliating defeat, Theresa May's deputy David Lidington (pictured today in the Commons) promised MPs the Govenrment would stage its own indicative votes after next week's EU summit if the Brexit deal fails again +31
In a desperate effort to avoid a third night of humiliating defeat, Theresa May's deputy David Lidington (pictured today in the Commons) promised MPs the Govenrment would stage its own indicative votes after next week's EU summit if the Brexit deal fails again 

Mark Francois was furious at the Speaker over his amendment selection for today's vote +31
A plan to stage 'indicative votes' on what kind of alternative Brexit Parliament might support was chosen by Speaker John Bercow today ahead of the latest round of votes at 5pm +31
A plan to stage 'indicative votes' on what kind of alternative Brexit Parliament might support was chosen by Speaker John Bercow today ahead of the latest round of votes at 5pm. Mr Bercow faced fury from Brexiteer Mark Francois after he ignored an amendment seeking to block a second referendum on Brexit 

What are the amendments in front of MPs as they debate how to delay Brexit?
MPs are debating how and when to delay Brexit today - and there are four amendments to Theresa May's proposal of seeking a short delay if MPs pass the deal before the EU Council and a longer delay if they back something else. 

Votes will begin at 5pm tonight and will pave the way for how long Brexit is delayed after March 29. 

Amendment I (Yvette Cooper and Oliver Letwin) to seize control of the Commons and stage indicative votes on Brexit next week 

Tabled by a cross-party group of pro-EU MPs, the Yvette Cooper and Oliver Letwin plan says MPs should be given control of the Commons agenda to stage indicative votes. It would set all the options and force MPs to decide   

Amendment H (TIG) to delay Brexit for for a second referendum

Tabled by Independent Group MP Sarah Wollaston and backed by members of the new grouping, Liberal Democrats and a handful from other parties, this amendment seeks an Article 50 extension to stage a second referendum with Remain and Parliament's preferred Brexit option on the ballot paper. 


Amendment E (Labour) to delay Brexit to give Parliament time to choose a Brexit 

Labour's amendment notes that Parliament has "decisively" rejected both Mrs May's deal and no deal and calls for a delay to Brexit "to provide parliamentary time for this House to find a majority for a different approach". 

Amendment J (Labour's Chris Bryant) to block a third meaningful vote 

Labour MP Chris Bryant's amendment says Theresa May should be blocked from bringing her deal back for a third approval vote next week. 

This morning EU Council President Donald Tusk said he will urge EU leaders to agree a 'long extension' to Article 50 - delaying Brexit by up to two years to give the UK time to 'rethink' - if Mrs May's deal is voted down a third time.  

Speaker John Bercow is accused of showing bias over Brexit AGAIN 

Speaker John Bercow was accused of bias today after rejecting a Brexiteer-led amendment aimed at killing off a second referendum.

Essex MP Bernard Jenkin suggested Mr Bercow was showing pro-Remain bias: 'What are we to conclude from your own views on these matters?'  

The Speaker said: 'He's not to conclude anything from that'. 

The row broke out when Tory Brexiteer Mark Francois and others were upset the Speaker hadn't selected a motion to rule out a second referendum signed by 127 MPs from across the Commons.

A number of other Brexiteer MPs including Jacob Rees-Mogg also expressed fury at Mr Bercow's decision not to select amendment B, which sought to reject a second Brexit referendum.

Deputy chairman of the ERG bloc of Eurosceptic Tories, Mark Francois said it was signed by '127 members of this house including the entirety of the DUP, 13 members of the Labour Party, and one independent to boot' as well as more than 100 Conservatives. 

Mr Bercow hit back, saying that 'members do have to take the rough with the smooth', adding that while it is true the number of signatories is important it is 'not the only factor'. 

In December Commons leader Andrea Leadsom accused John Bercow of bias over Brexit after he hammered the Government for cancelling a showdown vote on the deal.

Mr Bercow, who must be strictly independent as he oversees Commons debates, revealed he voted for remain in the EU referendum.

The admission, made during a talk he gave to students last year, sparked a storm of criticism as many said he should have kept his views secret given his role. 

And in January he was accused of anti-Brexit bias after helping secure a major Government defeat in the Commons. 

The row broke out after he tore up parliamentary procedures and over-ruled his own officials to permit a vote designed to tie Downing Street's hands. His decision led to a stand-up row behind the scenes with Tory chief whip Julian Smith, who accused him of trying to frustrate Brexit.

In extraordinary scenes at Westminster, Conservative MPs confronted Mr Bercow, branding him 'no longer neutral' and 'out of order'. A Cabinet minister accused him of 'degrading' his office.

The President of the European Council's intervention on Twitter this morning will bolster claims that the UK would not leave the EU until 2021 unless Mrs May can persuade the DUP and Brexiteers to back her divorce deal - because some in the EU want to play 'hardball' and push for a delay of two years. 

Ireland's Foreign Minister Simon Coveney said today the EU is likely to offer Britain a 21-month delay to Brexit while Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said: 'What I hope now is things that had been ruled out can be reconsidered such as the customs union and the single market'.

The PM's deal will be put to another vote next week, just 15 days before the country is due to leave the EU on 29 March, after MPs including a 'gang of four' rebellious Cabinet members helped to vote to permanently rule out No Deal Brexit. 

May told the Commons that is she loses a third time she will forced to ask Brussels for a long delay to Britain's departure from the EU at a summit on Thursday. 

Today Chancellor Philip Hammond hinted that Attorney General Geoffrey Cox could revisit his legal advice on whether Britain would be trapped in the Irish backstop 'indefinitely' - giving Brexiteers and the DUP a reason to climbdown and back May's deal. 

But members of the Tory Brexit group ERG have already refused to budge with MP Steve Baker saying 'come what may we will continue to vote down the deal' while Mark Francois insists Mrs May's deal is 'not a win - it's a lose', adding: 'I was in the Army I wasn't trained to lose'. 

Mrs May's tattered authority faces being drained away even further tonight after a cross party group of Remain MPs led by Tory Oliver Letwin and Labour's Yvette Cooper tabled an amendment to tonight's vote on delaying Brexit that would set up indicative votes on what MPs do want.

If the plan passes tonight, MPs would seize control of the Commons agenda next week to stage the debate and votes in an unprecedented collapse of ministerial power. 

Making it clear that only Theresa May quitting could restore order former Tory minister George Freeman said: 'This chaos can't continue.

'Something has to give. If, to get the votes for that, the PM has to promise that she will go after the Withdrawal Treaty is secure, to allow a new leader to reunite the country and oversee the next stage, she should'.

The DUP is said to have held talks with ministers last night and Tory Simon Clarke - sho has so far voted against the PM's deal admitting he and other Eurosceptics could vote for the deal 'with a gun to my head' - a nod to the fact that a harder Brexit is slipping away. 

And piling more pressure on European Council President Donald Tusk said he 'will appeal to the EU27 to be open to a long extension if the UK finds it necessary to rethink its Brexit strategy and build consensus around it.'

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Donald Tusk's intervention on Twitter this morning will bolster claims that the UK would not leave the EU until 2021
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Donald Tusk  today revealed he will urge EU


Last night, amid chaotic scenes, MPs voted twice against No Deal as a raft of pro-EU ministers abandoned the PM in a crucial vote and abstained. In the main division, MPs voted 321 to 278 to rule out No Deal. 

The Prime Minister then set a deadline of next Wednesday for MPs to pass her deal or face the prospect of a long extension to Britain's membership of the EU.

People's Vote campaign refuses to back second referendum bid 
The People's Vote campaign came out against a bid for a second referendum today.

MPs will vote directly on a new public vote for the first time tonight after Independent Group MP Sarah Wollaston tabled an amendment to Theresa May's motion on delaying Brexit. 

But People's Vote admitted its supporters would divide in favour, against and abstention tonight. 

A spokesman said: 'We do not think today is the right time to test the will of the House on the case for a new public vote.

'Instead, this is the time for Parliament to declare it wants an extension of Article 50 so that, after two-and-a-half years of vexed negotiations, our political leaders can finally decide on what Brexit means.'

Her comments imply No10 is planning for one last heave in a desperate bid to get the deal over the line.

It comes as Attorney General Geoffrey Cox was said to be considering additions to his legal advice on Mrs May's deal in a way that could persuade both Brexiteer Tories and the PM's DUP allies to back the proposal.

Chief whip Julian Smith help meetings with the DUP to discuss Brexit yesterday, amid widespread speculation Mr Cox could highlight a new way of the UK leaving the controversial Irish backstop - if it is seen to undermine the Good Friday Agreement.

The advice was not included in his formal letter to the Prime Minister this week. But it was mentioned briefly during exchanges on Tuesday night between Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay and leading Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg, who is also said to be interested in the idea.

One senior Tory Eurosceptic told the Mail they believed the fresh advice would help reassure the DUP - and Tory Brexiteers - that the backstop was not permanent, removing the fear that the UK could be trapped in a customs union against its will.

'I think that would be enough to get it over the line,' the MP said.

The Cabinet discussed the possibility of reviving the deal yesterday, although Mrs May is said to have given no indication of her plans.

The new defeats prompted Mrs May to tell MPs they have a week to agree her Brexit deal or face delaying the country's exit from the EU - potentially for years.

Tonight the Commons will vote on whether to ask EU leaders for an extension to Article 50, but Brussels has indicated it will not automatically agree to the request.  

With a new 'meaningful vote' looming - just 24 hours after the ailing PM lost the second one by 149 votes - deep splits began to emerge among Brexit hardliners.

The leaders of the European Research Group Jacob Rees-Mogg, Steve Baker and Mark Francois vowed to fight on for a No Deal and defeat Mrs May's deal for a third time.

The 37 Tories who turned on Brexit and the PM
The 12 Conservative cabinet members and ministers who abstained: 

Solicitor General Robert Buckland, Foreign Office minister Alistair Burt, Business Secretary Greg Clark, Defence minister Tobias Ellwood, Justice Secretary David Gauke, Business minister Richard Harrington, Health minister Stephen Hammond, Culture minister Margot James, Education minister Anne Milton, Scottish Secretary David Mundell, Business minister Claire Perry and Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd. 

The 18 other Tory MPs who abstained

Bim Afolami, Alberto Costa,  Stephen Crabb, Vicky Ford, Mike Freer, Richard Graham, Damian Green,  Sir Oliver Heald, Peter Heaton-Jones, Simon Hoare, Nigel Huddleston, Joe Johnson, Dame Eleanor Laing, Jeremy Lefroy, Victoria Prentis, Keith Simpson, Dame Caroline Spelman,  Sir Gary Streeter, 

The 17 Conservatives who voted against the PM: 

Guto Bebb (Aberconwy), Richard Benyon (Newbury), Nick Boles (Grantham and Stamford), Kenneth Clarke (Rushcliffe), Jonathan Djanogly (Huntingdon), George Freeman (Mid Norfolk), Justine Greening (Putney), Dominic Grieve (Beaconsfield), Sam Gyimah (East Surrey), Phillip Lee (Bracknell), Oliver Letwin (West Dorset), Paul Masterton (East Renfrewshire), Sarah Newton (Truro and Falmouth), Mark Pawsey (Rugby), Antoinette Sandbach (Eddisbury), Nicholas Soames (Mid Sussex), Edward Vaizey (Wantage).

After the votes, Mrs May warned the Commons it must 'face up to the consequences' of its votes over the past two days. MPs crushed her Brexit deal in a second so-called meaningful vote last night.  

She said if her deal is not successful at a third meaningful vote, the EU would demand a long extension and Britain would have to take part in the European Parliament elections on May 23. 

Mrs May said 'the options before us are the same as they always have been' despite MPs voting to reject a no-deal Brexit.

Amid open rebellion against Mrs May, Truro and Falmouth MP Sarah Newton resigned as a minister at the Department for Work and Pensions, after defying the whips to vote for the cross-party proposal.   

So what happens now? May plots vote on Brexit delay after No Deal showdown  
The Government's defeat and apparent lack of control over events paves the way for a dramatic series of votes tomorrow that could play a pivotal role in determining when the UK leaves the European Union.

How it unfolds will greatly affect what, if any, bargaining power the Prime Minister has when she goes to the European Council in Brussels to ask for a delay to Brexit on March 21.

Mrs May will set out two scenarios.

Firstly, if they pass a Brexit deal before the meeting of EU leaders in the Belgian capital, she will ask for a three-month extension to June 30 to allow it to be ratified by member states.

But if they do not manage to pass a deal before March 21 it sets out clearly that she will be forced to ask for a longer extension to look at alternatives, potentially for years.

Implicit in this is a threat to Brexiteers to get behind her deal at the third time of asking, or deal with the alternative. 

Amid chaotic scenes, MPs first voted 312 to 308 in defiance of the Tory whips' attempt to quash the plan to scrap No Deal for good. Mrs May had wanted to only rule it out on March 29 but keep it on the table as a bargaining tool in further talks. 

Then, on a procedural second vote MPs voted 321 to 278 to confirm their original plan - defying a Government three line whip to block the rebel proposal at the second attempt.

The second defeat for the Government was worse because a raft of ministers - including Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd, Business Secretary Greg Clark and Justice Secretary David Gauke - abstained rather than vote against ruling out No Deal.

At least eight ministers refused to vote with the Prime Minister on her plans for No Deal - but Downing Street signalled they would not be fired unless they actively voted against.

The Commons also rejected a Brexiteer plan to try and secure radical 11th hour concessions from Brussels ahead of a delayed No Deal on May 22. MPs voted by a landslide 374 to 164 against the plan. 

The immediate consequence is MPs will tomorrow vote on a motion about delaying Brexit. Mrs May will outline two choices in a debate tomorrow.

First she will say a short delay to June 30 could be agreed at next week's EU Council - but only if they have passed the deal in a third 'meaningful vote' - which would have to be agreed by the end of next week.

If MPs refuse to do this, they must endorse an alternative Brexit plan and accept a much longer delay. The EU has hinted at a two year delay. 

Speaking after the result was read out, the Prime Minister said: 'The House has today provided a clear majority against leaving without a deal, however I will repeat what I said before.

'These are about the choices this House faces. The legal default in EU and UK law is that the UK will leave without a deal unless something else is agreed. The onus is now on every one of us in this House to find out what that is.

'The options before us are the same as they always have been.'

MORE https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6809979/MPs-vote-AGAINST-second-referendum-time.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
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Post  Admin on Thu 14 Mar 2019, 1:43 pm

'The potential is unlimited!' Donald Trump wades into the middle of the Brexit crisis with an early-morning tweet talking up a 'large scale trade deal' with Britain after we leave the EU
The president sent the tweet at 7.22am Washington time 
It came at a critical time for Brexit as MPs are set to debate a delay to departure
Came after an earlier row about US food imports like chlorinated chicken
British farmers want to keep the current high safety and welfare standards 
By DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 12:04, 14 March 2019 | UPDATED: 13:01, 14 March 2019
Donald Trump has waded yet again into Brexit, saying he was looking forward to talks on a ‘large scale trade deal’ with the UK, adding ‘the potential is unlimited!’
As Westminster was engulfed by ongoing chaos about when and if the UK will leave the EU the president took to Twitter with the upbeat message.
It was sent at 7.22am in Washington DC, 11.22am in the UK, a morning time that often sees Mr Trump uses Twitter to comment on news he has seen on television.
He wrote: My Administration looks forward to negotiating a large scale Trade Deal with the United Kingdom.

‘The potential is unlimited!’
Mr Trump took to Twitter in the early morning, Washington time. He is a frequent early morning tweeter on a wide range of issues

He enthusiastically voiced his backing for a UK-US trade deal once Brexit is finalised. It has been the subject of a lot of debate in recent weeks
His intervention is likely to reignite the row over the UK’s post-Brexit trade with the United States.

Earlier this month his ambassador in the UK, Woody Johnson, accused the European Union of planting false concerns over US farming practices, including chlorinated chicken.

The Trump administration's post-Brexit trade deal demands sparked fears that the UK could be flooded with low-quality food imports.

Earlier this month Woody Johnson said: 'In any situation I know that our two countries have to be together in this free world' The New York Jets owner and billionaire businessman has been ambassador to the UK since 2017 when he was appointed by Donald Trump

The National Farmers' Union had raised concerns over food safety and animal welfare standards. It wants food imports to continue to meet the same standards as they do currently in the UK

The US wants 'comprehensive market access' for US agricultural products through the reduction or removal of tariffs and the elimination of 'unwarranted barriers' to food and drink imports according to a document released today.

The publication of negotiating objectives for a deal by the office of US trade representative Robert Lighthizer was welcomed by the Department for International Trade as a sign that Washington is keen to start talks soon after Brexit.

Liam Fox's department said the UK would insist on maintaining 'high standards for businesses, workers and consumers' in any deal.

But the National Farmers' Union raised concerns over food safety and animal welfare standards.

Share or comment on this article: Donald Trump wades into the Brexit crisis with an early-morning TRADE DEAL tweet
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Post  Admin on Wed 13 Mar 2019, 9:03 pm

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6803599/Fifteen-Brexiteer-ministers-threaten-QUIT-force-job.html?ico=pushly-notifcation-small
No Deal is OFF the table: MPs vote 312 to 308 to say Britain should NEVER be allowed to crash out of the EU as Remain supporters seize control of Brexit and pave the way for Britain's exit to be delayed
MPs will hold more Brexit votes tonight after Theresa May said they must decide whether to accept No Deal 
But Mrs May pulled out of presenting her own motion and handed the job to Environment Secretary Gove 
The Prime Minister will vote against No Deal happening on March 29 but say it must remain on the table 
Tory MPs have a free vote on May's plan and a rival amendment aimed at uniting the Conservative Party
EU Brexit negotiator has already rejected the alternative plan known as the Malthouse Compromise  
May is ordering her MPs to vote against a cross party plan to rule out a No Deal Brexit in all circumstances 
In the Spring Statement, Chancellor Philip Hammond warned against No Deal and called for 'compromise'
By TIM SCULTHORPE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR and MARTIN ROBINSON, CHIEF REPORTER FOR MAILONLINE and DAVID WILCOCK, WHITEHALL CORRESPONDENT FOR MAILONLINE

PUBLISHED: 11:08, 13 March 2019 | UPDATED: 19:36, 13 March 2019

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No Deal was effectively taken off the table tonight as MPs voted that it should never be allowed to happen.

In a fresh humiliation for Theresa May, a rebel amendment to rule out No Deal in all circumstances passed - setting the stage for a delay to Brexit amid fears Britain's exit could be cancelled altogether.   

MPs voted 312 to 308 in defiance of the Tory whips attempt to quash the plan to scrap No Deal for good. Mrs May had wanted to only rule it out on March 29 but keep it on the table for further talks. 

The Commons then immediately rejected a Brexiteer plan to try and secure radical 11th hour concessions from Brussels ahead of a delayed No Deal on May 22. MPs voted 374 to 164 against the plan. 

The vote does not change the law and Brexiteers will insist it is not binding - but it will be seen in Brussels as a clear signal Britain is blinking over Brexit.  

Avoiding No Deal entirely can only be done in two ways: revoking Article 50 and cancelling Brexit or by adopting the Brexit deal.

A delay to Brexit of several months or longer would postpone that choice - and would require a change in the law which spells out exit day as March 29 - but it cannot be avoided forever.

Earlier, The PM could do more than nod in support as the Environment Secretary set out the Government's plan to block a No Deal Brexit on Britain's scheduled exit date - but desperately try to keep it on the table.

In an attempt to stop mass resignations from the Government the Prime Minister was forced to promise a free vote tonight on her motion that says there should not be a no deal Brexit on March 29 - but that the option must stay on the table. The PM planned to vote for this but the motion has now been deleted.

Brexiteers are pushing an alternative plan based on the so-called Malthouse Compromise to be adopted. It says the Government should delay Brexit until May 22, and offer to 'buy' an almost three-year transition period until 2021. The idea is there is either a full-blown UK-EU trade deal in place by then or both sides are ready for a no deal on basic World Trade Organisation terms.  

The Eurosceptics say if the EU rejects the offer, Britain must crash out without a deal on May 22 - following a short two month delay to prepare. 

The Brexiteer plan is now almost certain to be defeated after Remain MPs secured enough support to win on the Spelman plan. 

With Mrs May's voice failing today Mr Gove began the debate by praising her saying: 'She may temporarily have lost her voice, but what she has not lost, and will never lose, is her focus in the national interest, and a full-hearted desire to do what is right for our country.'     

Mrs May is meeting members of her Cabinet inside Parliament tonight ahead of the votes beginning at 7pm. 

Jeremy Corbyn will whip his Labour MPs to vote against Mrs May's plan and back the Spelman amendment to ensure the UK cannot crash out of Europe without an agreement with Brussels first 'under any circumstances'.

Ahead of today's debate, Chancellor Philip Hammond used his Spring Statement to issue a stark warning about No Deal and called for the Commons to 'compromise'.  

MPs voted 312 to 308 in defiance of the Tory whips attempt to quash the plan to scrap No Deal for good. Mrs May had wanted to only rule it out on March 29 but keep it on the table for further talks. +16

Theresa May arrived back at the Commons this evening ahead of the votes which are set to rule out Britain leaving with No Deal on March 29 and pave the way for Brexit to be delayed +16

Theresa May is losing her voice and asked Michael Gove to open the debate ahead of a vote on taking No Deal off the table - having previously said she would speak +16

Mr Gove paid tribute to Mrs May's efforts in her negotiations and said: #She always, always, always acts in the national interest - we are lucky to have her' +16

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Michael Gove said that since Mrs May lost the first meaningful vote on her Withdrawal Agreement in January she has spent 'more than 19 hours at the despatch box', and: 'Has shown fortitude, tenacity, thoughtfulness, diligence - and above all an unselfish and unstinting patriotism.'

Mr Gove said it was only appropriate that 'on all sides of the House' MPs recognise the way in which the Prime Minister 'always, always, always puts country first' - but told them that after rejecting her deal they now have 'difficult choices to make' about Brexit.

Earlier the croaky Tory leader insisted she understood Britain's demand to get Brexit done today as she croaked through PMQs with a blast at Jeremy Corbyn for refusing to help pass her deal.

Hours after she was humiliated by a second drubbing at the hands of MPs, Mrs May returned to the Despatch Box to insist: 'I want to leave the EU with a good deal - I believe we have a good deal.' 

The Prime Minister is fighting for her political life after being humiliated by a crushing Commons defeat last night which saw her on the 'last chance' Brexit deal voted down by 391 to 242. 

Today at Prime Minister's Questions Mrs May confronted MPs for the first time since the fresh humiliation. She made light of her own inability to speak blasted at Mr Corbyn: 'I may not have my own voice but I understand the voice of the country.'

Mrs May repeatedly told MPs that the only way to take no deal off the table for good was to either cancel Brexit altogether or ultimately back her deal.

But an hour later Chancellor Philip Hammond used his Spring Statement to undermine his leader by calling for No Deal to be taken off the table by MPs tonight.  Minutes later Liz Truss undermined him by saying: 'No deal would be better than not Brexit-ing'.  

EU negotiator Michel Barnier already dismissed the Brexiteer plan this morning in a speech to the European Parliament in Strasbourg - prompting Remain MPs to say it is a defacto vote for crashing out on March 29.  

What is the Spelman no No Deal plan?  
How did the plan come about?

The cross party amendment tabled by Tory Dame Caroline Spelman and Labour's Jack Dromey is their latest attempt to block a No Deal Brexit. 

They laid a similar one in January which was passed by the Commons.

But it is none-binding and the goalposts have been moved by Mrs May's two failed attempts to get a Brexit deal through parliament. 

So they are doing it again.

What does it propose?

Quite simply it rejects a No Deal Brexit at any time and under any circumstances. 

Who is backing it?

A cross-party group of mainly Remain-supporting MPs, including Sir Oliver Letwin, Hilary Benn, Nick Boles and Yvette Cooper, as well as all 11 members of the new Independent Group. 

Jeremy Corbyn's Labour is expected to whip his MPs in favour of the plan.  

Who opposes it?

The Government. 

Theresa May is to whip her MPs to oppose it - including Dame Caroline - under pressure from Brexiteer ministers who have threatened to quit if no-deal is removed as an option. 

They regard it as an important tool in persuading the EU to offer the UK a better deal, even at this late stage with just 16 days until Britain is supposed to leave the European Union.

How much would the UK have to pay?

Passing this amendment would more firmly pave the way to tomorrow's vote on asking the EU for an extension of Article 50. 

If a delay to Brexit was agreed with the European Union Britain would have to continue to pay contributions. 

How much this is would depend on how long an extension is achieved. 

It has been reported that Brussels will demand another £13.5billion in Brexit divorce payments if Theresa May seeks an extension to Article 50.

The deal obliges Britain to pay about £39billion in divorce settlement.  

What is the 'Malthouse Compromise'? 
How did the plan come about?

Housing minister Kit Malthouse brought Remain and Leave-supporting Tories together in a bid to break the Brexit impasse – concocting the plan which now bears his name. 

What does the 'Malthouse Compromise' propose? 

In simple terms, it calls for the UK to negotiate a new transition period until 2021 or leave the EU in May if Brussels fails to offer an agreement.

The plan contains two choices to be offered to the EU: one for how the UK will leave with a deal, and one for how it will leave without.

Plan A is similar to the current Withdrawal Agreement, but with changes to replace the Irish backstop and the implementation period with 'alternative arrangements'.

Plan B assumes that agreement on the Withdrawal Agreement is not possible and creates a 'transitional standstill period'.

How is plan B different to May's deal? 

The current Withdrawal Agreement is stripped down to little more than the deal on citizens' rights and the transition period. This would be extended by a year until no later than December 2021.

The aim of this is to provide a longer period to agree the future relationship, but it could also involve paying more money to the EU.

The second major difference is to the controversial backstop, which would be deleted. Instead, if there is no trade deal at the end of transition the UK and EU would use a 'basic free trade agreement' - essentially trading with the EU on WTO rules. It relies on existing administrative processes.

Is plan B different to a no-deal Brexit?

Yes – the plans says Britain would remain in a transition period on existing rules for three years outside the EU. 

The UK would become a third country, in practice, but would offer to pay the EU in exchange for retaining the implementation period until no later than December 2021. Plan A would remain on offer as long as the EU was willing to consider it.

If there is still no trade deal in place by the end of the three year transition, then Britain would finally leave with no deal. 

How much would the UK have to pay?

Under plan B, Britain would offer around £10 billion per year in exchange for the tranition period to continue.


Theresa May insisted in PMQs she understood Britain's demand to get Brexit done today as she croaked through PMQs (pictured) with a blast at Jeremy Corbyn for refusing to help pass her deal. But it appears her voice was too weak to go again this afternoon

Brexiteers (including Steve Baker left) have joined forces with Remain Tories (from second left Nicky Morgan, Damian Green and Simon Hart) to say Mrs May should offer to 'buy' a transition period after March 29 in return for the divorce bill as an alternative to No Deal +16

EU negotiator Michel Barnier already dismissed the plan this morning in a speech to the European Parliament in Strasbourg (pictured) +

Video playing bottom right...

Britain will face 'significant disruption' in the short and medium term if it crashes out of the European Union without a deal, Philip Hammond has warned, as he called for no-deal to be taken off the table.

The Chancellor, delivering his Spring Statement to MPs, said there would be a 'smaller, less prosperous' economy in the long term, with higher unemployment, lower wages and higher prices in shops.

In comments seen as a veiled call for a softer Brexit, he called for a compromise on what the Commons can agree to in the national interest.

Mr Hammond said the economy was 'fundamentally robust' but pleaded with MPs to lift the 'uncertainty' that 'hangs over' the UK because of the no-deal threat, after Theresa May's deal was rejected for the second time on Tuesday night.

He said: 'Our economy is fundamentally robust but the uncertainty that I hoped we would lift last night still hangs over it.

'We cannot allow that to continue: it is damaging our economy and it is damaging our standing and reputation in the world.

'Tonight, we have a choice: we can remove the threat of an imminent no-deal exit hanging over our economy.

'Tomorrow, we will have the opportunity to start to map out a way forward - towards building a consensus across this House for a deal we can collectively support, to exit the EU in an orderly way to a future relationship that will allow Britain to flourish.'

A Treasury source insisted Mr Hammond supports the Prime Minister's deal, saying: 'He has been very clear that he supports the PM's deal but he has also been saying for months that compromise is how we get through this and he is calling for compromise.'  

Despite Mr Barnier's stance Eurosceptic ministers have demanded the right to vote for the plan anyway in the hope of uniting the Tories and forcing concessions from Brussels.

One minister told the Telegraph: 'The Remainers have had it all their own way, they've breached collective responsibility without any sanction.

'We've been loyal and look where it's got us.' 

The delegation of 15 ministers is meeting Mrs May at 4.30pm and one warned: 'We will all go. It would be the end of her.' 

Brexiteer ringleader Jacob Rees-Mogg has also backed the so-called Malthouse amendment ahead of tonight's no deal votes 

Senior Brexiteer Steve Baker, a key figure in the hardline European Research Group, said the new version of the Malthouse Compromise would 'throw three safety nets' around leaving the EU without a Withdrawal Agreement on March 29.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that plan A remained putting 'alternative arrangements' in place to replace the backstop in the Withdrawal Agreement that was defeated last night.

The 'sledgehammer' tariffs threatened on EU products if there is a No Deal Brexit
Food 

Proposed tariff rates on a range of food products were announced as a proportion of the so-called 'most favoured nation' (MFN) currently imposed by the EU on imports from countries which do not have a free trade agreement. 

Lamb/mutton: 100% of MFN

Beef 53% of MFN 

Poultry 60% of MFN

Pork 13% of MFN

Butter 32% of MFN

Cheddar-like cheese 13% of MFN

Protected fish and seafood products 100% of MFN  

Milled and semi-milled products (83%). 

INDUSTRIAL 

Finished buses: 12.6%

Finished cars and trucks: 10.6%

Transport equipment: 2.9%

Fertilisers: 2.1%

Ceramics: 1.2%

Textiles and textile products: 0.9%

Stone and cement: 0.3%

Leather and hides: 0.2%

Mineral products: 0.2%

Glass: 0.2%

Chemical products: 0.1%

Plastics and rubber: 0.1%

The second element was to 'buy' an implementation period 'so they get about £10 billion a year and we all get a transition arrangement'.

The third was offering 'standstill' arrangements with the EU to provide a third way to have a smooth exit.

The EU's Michel Barnier has repeatedly stressed that a transition arrangement could only be offered if there was a formal Withdrawal Agreement, but Mr Baker said 'negotiability is a dynamic concept'.

He repeated today there will be no further offer from Brussels apart from the deal already on the table, and it is now 'the responsibility of the UK' to suggest a way forward.

He told the European Parliament: 'What will their choice be, what will be the line they will take? That is the question we need a clear answer to now.

'That is the question that has to be answered before a decision on a possible further extension 

'Why would we extend these discussions? The discussion on Article 50 is done and dusted. We have the Withdrawal Agreement. It is there.

'That is the question asked and we are waiting for an answer to that.

Mr Barnier added: 'The risk of no-deal has never been higher. That is the risk of an exit - even by accident - by the UK from the EU in a disorderly fashion.' 

In other developments today, Brexiteers today insisted that a No Deal Brexit would be 'good news' for Britain despite ministers revealing alarming new tariffs that would be charged on products imported from the EU.

The new import taxes will be imposed on items from the continent including cars, meat and cheese if the UK crashes out of the bloc on March 29 - but will not apply in Northern Ireland.

But excited members of the Tory ERG group led by Jacob Rees-Mogg were quick to point out that the arrangements would ensure nine out of ten global imports would land in Britain completely tax-free without an EU deal. 

Tory Brexiteer and ERG chairman Steve Baker said today: 'No Deal is nothing to be scared of – it's just Brexit with many mini-deals' while ERG spokesman Sir Bill Cash, who is also Chairman of the European Scrutiny Committee, said these tariffs will help the British public 'enormously' making 'imports much cheaper' from non-EU countries. 

The new levies would force up prices on EU imports including cars and many foods plus products such as televisions and leather jackets 

At the moment products from EU countries such as Germany and France can be imported into Britain without any charges under the single market, but if Britain leaves without a deal the Government will have to introduce new import taxes. 

However in a seemingly confusing loophole in No Deal plan, Northern Ireland's border would remain open at least 'temporarily' and goods entering from the Republic would not face tariffs to preserve the Good Friday agreement. 

The situation will raise fears that the Northern Irish border could become a smuggling route for EU products.  

Under the No Deal plan revealed this morning, 87 per cent of products would be subject to zero tariffs in an effort to stop price spikes and kick-start trade with Britain from across the world. The current figure is 80 per cent.

Critics have said that a No Deal would be a 'disaster' for Britain who would be 'blocked' from trading with its closest trading partner - the EU.

CBI director-general Carolyn Fairbairn said today: 'This tells us everything that is wrong with a no-deal.

'What we are hearing is the biggest change in terms of trade this country has faced since the mid-19th century being imposed on this country with no consultation with business, no time to prepare.

'This is a sledgehammer for our economy.' 

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The new tariff regime would be applied temporarily in an attempt to minimise disruption to the economy and stop price hikes. 

But ministers said products from the EU including beef, pork, chicken, butter, cheese and fish would also be subject to import taxes expected to push up prices in the supermarkets from March 29 if there is no agreement.  

Cars from the EU would be subject to a a 10.6 per tax on the cost of all 'fully finished' vehicles - making the prices of an average vehicle surge by £1,500. 

After the decisive defeat of Theresa May's Brexit deal last night, she has given MPs a free vote at 7pm tonight on whether they want to leave the EU without a deal. She has indicated that she will vote against leaving without a deal.  

Among the 13 per cent of imports - most from the EU - which will be subject to tariffs, will be:

Beef, lamb, pork and poultry and some dairy products including butter and cheese - in order to protect UK farmers and producers from cheap imports;
A number of tariffs on finished new cars, vans, lorries and buses imported from the EU - but charges will not apply to vehicle parts imported from the EU to prevent disruption to supply chains; 
Ceramics, fertiliser and fuel, where tariffs protect UK producers against unfair practices like dumping and state subsidies; 
Goods including bananas, raw cane sugar and certain kinds of fish, where tariffs are used to permit preferential access to the UK market for developing countries. 

On the new tariff regime, Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay told Today it was a 'modest liberalisation' of trade, adding: 'This is for a short term while we engage with business and see what the real-term consequences are'. 

But British Retail Consortium chief executive Helen Dickinson hit back: 'Even as the Brexit clock approaches midnight, MPs continue to squabble.

'Yet it is the public who will feel the impact of a No Deal Brexit – tariffs, non-tariff barriers and currency depreciation will all push up costs and reduce the choice on the shelves we currently enjoy.

'Businesses are exasperated by the lack of clarity over their future trading arrangements'. 

 
Hammond promises a £26BILLION 'deal dividend': Chancellor demands MPs take No Deal off the table TONIGHT and warns crashing out means 'job losses, lower wages and higher prices'
Philip Hammond dangled a £26billion deal dividend in front of MPs today as he demanded they take an immediate No Deal Brexit off the table.

The Chancellor used his Spring Statement to issue stark warnings about the risks of crashing out, insisting it meant 'higher unemployment, lower wages and higher prices in the shops'.

Mr Hammond appealed for 'consensus' over how Britain should leave the EUas he painted a rosy picture of the economy if Brexit hardliners back down and endorse the deal.

His intervention comes a day after Tory rebels humiliated Theresa May by handing down a second drubbing of the deal.

The Chancellor said the economy would continue to grow in every year to 2023 - at a faster rate than Germany - if the deal is agreed, even with a slowdown this year. 

The Chancellor said the strong economy meant Britain was taking 'another step of... the road out of austerity' if it avoided a no deal shock. 

Mr Hammond said if MPs pass the deal he will decide in the Spending Review later this year how to share the proceeds from any 'Deal Dividend' that Treasury aides said was worth £26billion - £11billion more than thought at the Budget in November.

The money is available deal or no deal - but would be soaked up dealing with the consequences of no deal if Britain crashes out of the bloc.  

If there is a deal, the money would go on increased spending on public services, capital investment and keeping taxes low.

Mr Hammond also announced a £100million funding boost to combat knife crime. The money will pay for a 'surge' in street policing in an effort to tackle rising levels of violence on the country's streets. 

There were also spending announcements on free sanitary products for schools and a package to tackle climate change. 

In the Spring Statement this lunchtime, the Chancellor is expected to pledge an immediate £100million boost for police forces

The latest economic forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility suggest the economy will be slower this year than expected in November (pictured) but with growth every year to 2023


Philip Hammond (pictured today leaving No 11 Downing Street) will today announce a major funding boost to combat knife crime as he unveils his spring statement 16 days before Brexit 

In a spring statement largely overshadowed by chaos over Brexit: 

Hammond announced Britain would continue to grow every year until 2023 - but only if MPs pass the deal;
Chancellor used his spring statement to warn MPs about the risks of a no deal Brexit if they refuse to adopt a deal; 
He admitted last night's crushing defeat had left the country in chaos and was not the backdrop he wanted to today's statement; 
Hammond said if MPs pass the deal he could unlock a 'deal dividend' that would finally mean a true end to austerity;
In a series of relatively small crowd-pleasing announcements Hammond promised £100 million this year for police forces in England to pay for overtime aimed at addressing the 'epidemic' of knife crime;
A £3 billion affordable homes guarantee scheme, to support delivery of around 30,000 homes;
A 'Future Homes Standard' setting out the end of fossil-fuel heating systems in all new houses from 2025;
The provision of free sanitary products in secondary schools and colleges in England from the next school year;
Shadow chancellor accused Hammond of 'callous complacency' amid the Government's 'mishandling of Brexit 
Spring Statement 2019: What has Hammond revealed? 
The Office for Budget Responsibility forecasts GDP growth of 1.2% this year, then 1.4% in 2020 and 1.6% for each of the following three years.
The OBR expects to see 600,000 new jobs by 2023, with wage growth at 3% or higher in each year of the forecast period. 
UK debt is forecast to be lower in every year than predicted at the Budget, falling to 82.2% of GDP next year, then 79%, 74.9% and 74% in the following years and 73% in 2023/24. 
£260 million for the Borderlands Growth deal covering the border regions of England and Scotland and said negotiations are progressing on future deals for mid-Wales and Derry/Londonderry.
A £700 million package of reforms to help small businesses take on more apprentices, announced in the autumn Budget, is to be brought forward to the start of the new financial year in April.
From June, the UK will begin to abolish the requirement for paper landing cards at points of entry to the country and will allow citizens of the USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Singapore and South Korea to use e-gates at airports and Eurostar terminals. 
Funding of £79 million allocated to the ARCHER2 supercomputer at Edinburgh University, £45 million for genomics research at the European Bioinformatics Institute and £81 million for a new Extreme Photonics Centre in Oxfordshire, along with a guarantee of UK funding for the JET nuclear fusion reactor, whatever happens with Brexit. 
The Government will fund free sanitary products in secondary schools and colleges in England from the next school year. 
Some 445,000 square kilometres of ocean around Ascension Island to be declared a Marine Protected Area. 
A new £3 billion Affordable Homes Guarantee scheme to support delivery of around 30,000 affordable homes and £717 million from the Housing Infrastructure Fund to unlock up to 37,000 new homes on sites in West London, Cheshire, Didcot and Cambridge. 
 

In his 35-minute statement, Mr Hammond said that Tuesday's vote to reject the EU Withdrawal Agreement 'leaves a cloud of uncertainty hanging over the economy' and his most urgent task is to lift it.

He announced the latest economic forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility suggest the economy will be sharply slower this year than expected - with a downgrade from 1.6per cent to 1.2 per cent - in November.

But growth will rise again to 1.6 per cent a year in 2021, 2022 and 2023, the forecasts say. 

He said: 'Last night's events mean we are not where I hoped we would be today.

'Our economy is fundamentally robust. But the uncertainty that I hoped we would lift last night, still hangs over us.

'We cannot allow that to continue. It is damaging our economy and it is damaging our standing and reputation in the world.

'Tonight, we have a choice. We can remove the threat of an imminent no-deal exit hanging over our economy.

'Tomorrow, we will have the opportunity to start to map out a way forward towards building a consensus across this House for a deal we can, collectively support, to exit the EU in an orderly way to a future relationship that will allow Britain to flourish, protecting jobs and businesses

'A brighter future is within our grasp. Tonight, let's take a decisive step towards seizing it and building a Britain fit for the future; a Britain the next generation will be proud to call their home.'

The Chancellor warned that the country's economic progress will be at risk in a no-deal Brexit, and said he was 'confident' that the Commons will agree a smooth and orderly EU withdrawal 'over the coming weeks'. 

Mr Hammond told MPs: 'A no-deal Brexit would deliver a significant short- to medium-term reduction in the productive capacity of the British economy. 

'And because our economy is operating at near full capacity, any fiscal and monetary response would have to be carefully calibrated not to simply cause inflation.' 

Mr Hammond said he will decide in the Spending Review later this year how to share the proceeds from any 'Deal Dividend', if the UK leaves the EU with a deal, between increased spending on public services, capital investment and keeping taxes low. 

Responding to Mr Hammond's statement, shadow chancellor John McDonnell said: 'We have just witnessed a display by the Chancellor of this Government's toxic mix of callous complacency over austerity and ... mishandling of Brexit.' 

Mr Hammond is also expected to warn today that money to end austerity can be found only if MPs vote to leave the EU with a deal. He is expected to unveil a 'deal dividend' of £20 billion to invest in public services. PIctured is the current state of the deficit +16
Mr Hammond is also expected to warn today that money to end austerity can be found only if MPs vote to leave the EU with a deal. He is expected to unveil a 'deal dividend' of £20 billion to invest in public services. PIctured is the current state of the deficit 

Mr McDonnell said downgrading forecasts were a 'pattern' under Mr Hammond before he criticised Government borrowing.

Free sanitary products will be made available in ALL schools so that 'girls no longer have to miss a day' because they can't afford them
The Government will fund free sanitary products in schools to tackle period poverty, Philip Hammond announced today.

Mr Hammond said 'some girls are missing school' because they can't afford to buy them.  

The Chancellor said the Department for Education would develop the new scheme in time for the next school year.

The surprise announcement came amid a small spending spree in Mr Hammond's Spring Statement today.  

He added: 'On the deficit, he's boasting about the deficit - he's not eliminated the deficit as we were promised by 2015.

'He's simply shifted it on to the shoulders of headteachers, NHS managers, local councillors and police commissioners and, worst of all, onto the backs of many of the poorest in our society.

'The consequences are stark - infant mortality has increased, life-expectancy has reduced, and our communities are less safe.

'Police budgets have faced a cut of £2.7 billion since 2010 and nothing the Chancellor has said today will make up for the human and economic consequences of those cuts.'

Mr McDonnell added there is 'nothing balanced' about a Government giving more than £110 billion of tax cuts to the rich and corporations while '87 people a day die before they receive the care they need'.

Last week Mr Hammond urged forces to divert existing resources from lower priority crime instead of demanding more.

He said backed a 'surging of resources from other areas of policing activity into dealing with this spike in knife crime' and said forces should 'move' money from other areas.

Mr Hammond's plan again some positive economic figures - including wages (blue line)  rising sharply faster than prices (red line) 

But Mr Javid publicly backed senior police officers who said they needed more money to pay for overtime to put more officers on the streets.

Hammond pledges £100million to fight the 'scourge of knife crime' 
Philip Hammond today announced a major funding boost to combat knife crime.

In the Spring Statement, the Chancellor pledged an immediate £100million boost for police forces.

The money will pay for a 'surge' in street policing in an effort to tackle rising levels of violence on the country's streets.

It follows a major Whitehall row between the Home Office and Treasury, and represents a major victory for Home Secretary Sajid Javid.

Last week Mr Hammond urged forces to divert existing resources from lower priority crime instead of demanding more.

Sources said around two thirds of the cash would go to paying for a surge in street policing, and the remainder to fund specialist Violence Reduction Units.

On Monday 46 London MPs called for Mr Hammond to use the Spring Statement to help the Metropolitan Police fight knife crime.

Last week a string of former senior officers said there was an urgent need for more police to be recruited.

Lord Hogan-Howe, the former Met commissioner, has called for an extra 20,000 officers across the country and told ministers to 'get a grip on the crisis'.

Police numbers have fallen by 20,000 in England and Wales since 2010. The number of knife-related deaths rose from 186 in 2015-16 to 285 in 2017-18.

Violent crime rose by nearly a fifth in the year to September 2018, according to police figures, and the increase in knife killings has been particularly pronounced.

In the last year alone, 27 under-19s have been stabbed to death, and there have been 285 knife killings in all - the highest level since the Second World War.

+16
Ahead of the statement, shadow chancellor John McDonnell urged him to end Government cuts

Downing Street is also understood to have been backing calls for extra cash. Forces are already set to receive nearly £970 million extra in the next financial year.

End of the gas boiler: Fossil-fuel heating systems will be BANNED in all new-build houses from 2025
Fossil-fuel powered boilers will be banned in new build homes from 2025, the Chancellor revealed today.

Philip Hammond's move spells the beginning of the end for gas boilers in Britain.

The move is part of a package of reforms aimed at tackling climate change in today's Spring Statement. 

But shadow housing secretary John Healey tweeted: 'Seriously underwhelming housing announcements from the Chancellor - debt guarantees a recycled pledge from 2017, and what sounds like a partial backtrack on the Tories' 2015 decision to scrap Labour's zero carbon homes plan... by 2025!'

Theresa May last week ordered an urgent set of ministerial meetings to discuss action against knives, but she came under fire after claiming there was 'no direct correlation between certain crimes and police numbers'.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick rejected that claim saying it was obvious 'there is some link between violent crime on the streets and police numbers'

Mrs May is also considering plans for would-be knife thugs to be treated in the same way as potential jihadis.

A new regime would see councils, schools and other agencies required to report youngsters considered to be at risk of being dragged into knife and gang crime.

Ahead of the statement, shadow chancellor John McDonnell urged him to end Government cuts.

Mr McDonnell said: 'Living standards have been squeezed by relentless cutbacks to public services, as part of a toxic Tory cocktail of callousness and incompetence.

'Philip Hammond must abandon this disastrous austerity agenda of the past nine years.

'Labour will tax the rich and giant corporations to end austerity, fund our public services properly, and rebuild our economy so it works for the many, not the few.'  

Read more:
Theresa May warned a dozen Eurosceptic ministers could quit to back a Brexit Malthouse 'Plan B'
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2019/03/12/theresa-may-warned-dozen-eurosceptic-ministers-could-quit-back/
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