European Union (Withdrawal) Bill — Approval by MPs of Government Plans in the Eventuality MPs Reject a Withdrawal Agreement or an Agreement is not Reached — 20 Jun 2018 at 15:45

The majority of MPs voted not to require the Government's future plans in relation to the UK's withdrawal from the European Union to be put to MPs for approval following the eventualities of: MPs rejecting a withdrawal agreement; no withdrawal agreement being reached by 21 January 2019; or the Prime Minister stating no withdrawal agreement can be reached.

MPs were considering the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill[1].

The motion rejected by the majority of MPs in this vote was:

  • That manuscript amendment (b) be made.

the rejected amendment was[2]:

  • to leave out from first “19P” to end

The rejected amendment sought change the motion under consideration from:

  • That this House
  • agrees with Lords amendments 19C to 19E, 19G to 19L and 19P, and proposes Government amendments to Lords amendment 19P.

to

  • That this House
  • agrees with Lords amendments 19C to 19E, 19G to 19L and 19P.

Amendment 19P was an amendment to amendment 19A. Amendment 19A provided for a new clause titled: “Parliamentary approval of the outcome of negotiations with the EU which began[3]:

  • (1) The withdrawal agreement may be ratified only if—
  • (a) a Minister of the Crown has laid before each House of Parliament—
  • (i) a statement that political agreement has been reached,
  • (ii) a copy of the negotiated withdrawal agreement, and
  • (iii) a copy of the framework for the future relationship,
  • (b) the negotiated withdrawal agreement and the framework for the future relationship have been approved by a resolution of the House of Commons on a motion moved by a Minister of the Crown,
  • (c) a motion for the House of Lords to take note of the negotiated withdrawal agreement and the framework for the future relationship has been tabled in the House of Lords by a Minister of the Crown and—
  • (i) the House of Lords has debated the motion, or
  • (ii) the House of Lords has not concluded a debate on the motion before the end of the period of five sitting days beginning with the first sitting day after the day on which the House of Commons passes the resolution mentioned in paragraph (b), and (d) an Act of Parliament has been passed which contains provision for the implementation of the withdrawal agreement.
  • (2) So far as practicable, a Minister of the Crown must make arrangements for the motion mentioned in subsection (1)(b) to be debated and voted on by the House of Commons before the European Parliament decides whether it consents to the withdrawal agreement being concluded on behalf of the EU in accordance with Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union.
  • (3) Subsection (4) applies if the House of Commons decides not to pass the resolution mentioned in subsection (1)(b).
  • (4) A Minister of the Crown must, within the period of 28 days beginning with the day on which the House of Commons decides not to pass the resolution, make a statement setting out how Her Majesty’s Government proposes to proceed in relation to negotiations for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU under Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union.

the clause went on to provide more details and definitions of terms used.

Amendment 19P sought to add new subclauses between subclauses (5) and (6), it stated:[3]

  • Line 37, at end insert—
  • “(5A) A Minister of the Crown must make arrangements for—
  • (a) a motion for the House of Commons to approve the statement mentioned in subsection (4), to be moved in that House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of seven Commons sitting days beginning with the day on which the statement is made, and
  • (b) a motion for the House of Lords to take note of the statement to be moved in that House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of seven Lords sitting days beginning with the day on which the statement is made.
  • (5B) Subsection (5C) applies if the Prime Minister makes a statement before the end of 21 January 2019 that no agreement in principle can be reached in negotiations under Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union on the substance of—
  • (a) the arrangements for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU, and
  • (b) the framework for the future relationship between the EU and the United Kingdom after withdrawal.
  • (5C) A Minister of the Crown must, within the period of 14 days beginning with the day on which the statement mentioned in subsection (5B) is made—
  • (a) make a statement setting out how Her Majesty’s Government proposes to proceed, and
  • (b) make arrangements for—
  • (i) a motion for the House of Commons to approve the statement mentioned in paragraph (a), to be moved in that House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of seven Commons sitting days beginning with the day on which the statement mentioned in paragraph (a) is made, and
  • (ii) a motion for the House of Lords to take note of the statement mentioned in paragraph (a) to be moved in that House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of seven Lords sitting days beginning with the day on which the statement mentioned in paragraph (a) is made.
  • (5D) A statement under subsection (5B) or (5C)(a) must be made in writing and be published in such manner as the Minister making it considers appropriate.
  • (5E) Subsection (5F) applies if, at the end of 21 January 2019, there is no agreement in principle in negotiations under Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union on the substance of—
  • (a) the arrangements for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU, and
  • (b) the framework for the future relationship between the EU and the United Kingdom after withdrawal.
  • (5F) A Minister of the Crown must, within the period of five days beginning with the end of 21 January 2019—
  • (a) make a statement setting out how Her Majesty’s Government proposes to proceed, and
  • (b) make arrangements for—
  • (i) a motion for the House of Commons to approve the statement mentioned in paragraph (a), to be moved in that
  • House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of five Commons sitting days beginning with the end of 21 January 2019, and
  • (ii) a motion for the House of Lords to take note of the statement mentioned in paragraph (a) to be moved in that House by a Minister of the Crown within the period of five Lords sitting days beginning with the end of 21 January 2019.
  • (5G) A statement under subsection (5F)(a) must be made in writing and be published in such manner as the Minister making it considers appropriate.
  • (5H) For the purposes of this section—
  • (a) a statement made under subsection (4), (5C)(a) or (5F)(a) may be combined with a statement made under another of those provisions,
  • (b) a motion falling within subsection (5A)(a), (5C)(b)(i) or (5F)(b)(i) may be combined into a single motion with another motion falling within another of those provisions, and
  • (c) a motion falling within subsection (5A)(b), (5C)(b)(ii) or (5F)(b)(ii) may be combined into a single motion with another motion falling within another of those provisions.”

Amendment 19A provides for a motion to be presented to the House of Commons seeking MPs' approval of the Governments' plans if:

  • > the House of Commons reject a withdrawal agreement and the framework for the future relationship with the European Union
  • > no agreement in principle covering the United Kingsom's withdrawal from the European Union and the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union is in place by the 21st of January 2019, or
  • > if the Prime Minister announces before that point that no such agreement can be reached.

the amendment also provides for corresponding motions to be presented to the House of Lords, to note (rather than approve as in the Commons) the Government's plans.

The amendments to amendment 19P supported by the majority of MPs in this vote were[3]:

  • 19R Line 3, leave out from “motion” to second “the” and insert “in neutral terms, to the effect that the House of Commons has considered the matter of”
  • 19S Line 24, leave out from “motion” to second “the” and insert “in neutral terms, to the effect that the House of Commons has considered the matter of”
  • 19T Line 50, leave out from “motion” to second “the” and insert “in neutral terms, to the effect that the House of Commons has considered the matter of”

These amendments are presumably those referred to as "Government amendments" in the manuscript amendment which was the subject of this vote. There are no other amendments to amendment 19P on the amendment sheet[2].

The amendments to amendment 19P provided for the provisions relating to motions for approval in the House of Commons to be changed from, for example:

  • a motion for the House of Commons to approve the statement

to

  • a motion in neutral terms, to the effect that the House of Commons has considered the matter of the statement

The phrase "in neutral terms" has an impact as a result of Standing Order 24B[4] titled: Amendments to motions to consider specified matters which states:

  • Where, in the opinion of the Speaker or the Chair, a motion, That this House, or, as the case may be, the committee has considered the matter, is expressed in neutral terms, no amendments to it may be tabled.

The lack of an ability to amend the motion appears less important than reducing the impact of the motion from "to approve" to "has considered".

Debate in Parliament |

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con305 (+2 tell) 6098.7%
DUP10 00100.0%
Green0 10100.0%
Independent0 30100.0%
Lab4 244 (+2 tell)096.2%
LDem0 11091.7%
PC0 40100.0%
SNP0 350100.0%
Total:319 304097.7%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

NameConstituencyPartyVote
Heidi AllenSouth CambridgeshireCon (front bench)aye
Kenneth ClarkeRushcliffeCon (front bench)aye
Phillip LeeBracknellConaye
Antoinette SandbachEddisburyCon (front bench)aye
Anna SoubryBroxtoweConaye
Sarah WollastonTotnesCon (front bench)aye
Frank FieldBirkenheadLab (minister)no
Kate HoeyVauxhallLab (minister)no
John MannBassetlawLab (minister)no
Graham StringerBlackley and BroughtonLab (minister)no

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