MPs want to take back control of Brexit. They just cannot agree how – Jason Beattie

Parliament returns today with the air of a hungover crowd who over did it at the weekend.

MPs are snappy and irritable and bearing a collective headache that is preventing them from thinking straight.

The uncertainty is not helping.

The Government will today try  to hold a meaningful vote on Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal  but this is expected to be ruled out of order by the Speaker on the grounds it is similar to the motion tabled on Saturday.

Commons rules, depending on their interpretation, prevent the same motion being tabled in the same parliamentary sitting.

If the vote does go ahead Downing Street is confident it has the numbers.

Stand by for fury (our country no longer does reasonable criticism any more) should John Bercow thwart the plan.



John Bercow could thwart Boris Johnson’s plan to hold a vote on his Brexit deal today

On Tuesday there will be the second reading of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill which will be weighed down with amendments like an over-decorated Christmas tree.

These will include a fresh attempt to push for a softer Brexit based around UK membership of the customs union and yet another attempt for a second referendum.

Brussels is reported to be waiting to see if the  Withdrawal Agreement Bill passes its second reading before deciding on whether to grant an extension. 

My colleague Dan Bloom has done  an excellent explainer of how the week could pan out here .

The problem for the anti-Brexiteers is they cannot agree on the best way forward.

Justine Greening, for instance, this morning said she would back the amendment calling for a second referendum but not the one on the customs union.

You fear that by the end of week Parliament will have yet again proved, in case this was not already apparent, that it knows what sort of Brexit it does not want but it has no idea what sort of Brexit it does want.



Boris Johnson faces a Commons ambush on his Brexit plans

Furthermore the whole issue has become so polarised that what would once have been regarded as a reasonable compromise is now deemed as some form of betrayal from a true Brexit.

The fervour of these pure Brexiteers has become mainstream Conservative policy to the extent that its party’s MPs are now selling Johnson’s proposals that will reduce GDP per capita income by up to 7% over the next decade as a ‘good deal.’

This is almost as disingenuous as Johnson’s claim that if his deal is passed then the country can start to come back together.

Not only will the wounds remain raw for several years to come but they will be inflamed by what will happen in the next 12 months when we try to negotiate a free trade deal with the EU and then other countries.

This is not the end of the Brexit nightmare.

It is a staging post on what is going to be a long, tortuous and uncomfortable journey.

Today’s agenda:

Midday (approx) – The Scottish court rules on whether Boris Johnson’s three letters comply with the Benn Act.

2.30pm – Ben Wallace takes Defence Questions in the Commons.

2.30pm – Football chiefs and fans are questioned about the collapse of Bury by the Culture, Media and Sport committee.

3.30pm – Motion tabled for a meaningful vote. It is up to the Speaker if this goes ahead. 

5.15pm – Alok Sharma is questioned by the International Development committee.

What I am reading:

Kevin Maguire on Boris Johnson’s hypocrisy

source.

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