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Brexit: Cable to step down as Lib Dem leader to make way for next generation – Politics live

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Majority of 211 for government motion means Theresa May will now seek extension from EU for departure dateHow would an extension to article 50 work?How did each MP vote in this week’s Brexit motions? 9.31pm GMT The Irish premier, Leo Varadkar, has said London needs to tell the EU about what purpose an extension would serve and how long it would last.Varadkar said he welcomed Westminster’s vote to extend Article 50 as it reduces the likelihood of a cliff edge, no-deal Brexit at the end of the month.There seems to be two emerging options – ratification of the withdrawal agreement followed by a short extension into the summer, or a much longer extension that would give the UK time and space to decide what they want to do, including considering options that had been taken off the table like participation in the customs union and single market.I think we need to be open to any request they make, listen attentively and be generous in our response. This matter will be now discussed further at next week’s European Council meeting and hopefully we will have more clarity from London in the meantime about their intentions.Why EUCO should allow an extension, if the UK gov and her majority in the House of Commons are not ready for a cross-party approach to break the current deadlock ? https://t.co/lj1Tm4kmIg 9.27pm GMT Cable has now released a statement on his impending departure:I indicated last year that, once the Brexit story had moved on and we had fought this year’s crucial local elections in 9,000 seats across England, it would be time for me to make way for a new generation. I set considerable store by having an orderly, business-like, succession unlike the power struggles in the other parties.So I wanted you, our members, to know that, assuming Parliament does not collapse into an early general election, I will ask the party to begin a leadership contest in May. 9.23pm GMT Cable’s departure in May as leader will trigger a 12-week contest. He has said:I wanted to set it out so that there’s an orderly process of succession and the next generation can come through rather than chaotic power struggles you’re seeing inside the Tory party and Labour party so I wanted us to do better than that.I would obviously like to have presided over a spectacular recovery [of the Lib Dems], rather than a gradual recovery, but events were beyond my control.The fact that the issue of no Brexit and peoples vote is still live, that Theresa May can’t get her Brexit deal through, that we’ve managed to scrub no deal is a tribute to the kind of campaigning that our party’s done. 9.15pm GMT The leader of the Liberal Democrats, Sir Vince Cable, will stand down the role after the local elections in May, he has said. In an interview with the Daily Mail, Cable said he wanted to pave the way for a new generation to lead the party through Brexit, but declined to back a successor. He has told the paper:My wife Rachel has been very supportive [of my time as leader] and doesn’t mind me doing it and has come round the country with me, but she would like to spend more time with me. I think she will see it as a bonus that she sees me more.I’ll be continuing as an MP. I want to get back to writing books again in my spare time. 8.54pm GMT Stephanie Peacock, who ignored a Labour instruction to abstain and voted against the amendment calling for a second referendum, has resigned from the party’s frontbench.It is with deep regret I tonight resigned from Labour’s front bench, because I believe we should respect the result of the 2016 vote to leave the European Union: pic.twitter.com/oPGwMp974UBREAKING: Amy Jackson, Jeremy Corbyn’s political secretary, has texted the 4 Labour shadow ministers who did not abstain on the second referendum amendment asking them to resign from the frontbench. They are Justin Madders, Stephanie Peacock, Emma Lewell-Buck and Yvonne Fovargue. 8.24pm GMT The Lib Dem leader, Vince Cable, has attacked Labour after the party failed to support the vote on another referendum.Labour have predictably let down the cause of a people’s vote this evening. This was their first chance to stand up and be counted, but instead they sat on their hands. Brexit remains in chaos with the government having faced heavy defeats this week.The Commons has agreed by a large majority that article 50 will have to be extended. With the hallowed exit date of 29 March more or less scrapped, it now seems inevitable that Brexit will be delayed or very possibly stopped. A people’s vote remains the only way to resolve what is fast becoming a national crisis. 7.57pm GMT The health secretary, Matt Hancock, who voted for the delay, has nevertheless told Channel 4 News it would be a “disaster” to have a long extension if the EU insisted on a Brexit delay of around two years.I think people want to get on with this. There are now two options on the table: One is to deliver the prime minister’s deal, which just can be delivered by 29 March or a short technical extension afterwards. Or, the alternative to that is a long extension, which I don’t want to see.We must deliver the result of the referendum, and hurry up about it.Summing up the debate, Barclay said: "It is time for this House to act in the national interest, it's time to put forward an extension that is realistic."And then he voted against it.Strangest 2 things of the night - Steve Barclay, the Brexit Secretary, voted against the plan he had been arguing for minutes before, and the chief whip who is in charge of getting MP s to back the govt, abstainedChief Whip abstained because he wanted to retain impartiality btw two sides of Tory party - so didn't vote with the PM - maybe understandable, but kind of unimagineable until this timeThe former Brexit Secretary voted with the government, while the current Brexit Secretary voted against the government https://t.co/DTCUEN8wOQ 7.42pm GMT Business leaders have welcomed the vote on an extension to article 50 but urged MPs not to drop the ball because of extra time.Edwin Morgan, the interim director of the Institute of Directors, said “few in business will be stepping forward to thank parliament for its efforts this week”, while the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said trade was still in the “danger zone” .While most businesses will support an extension to article 50 to avert the prospect of a messy and disorderly exit on 29 March, with just two weeks to go this vote leaves firms with no real clarity on the future.As the focus moves away from a 29 March 2019 exit date towards a later date, we must not overlook that 29 March is still the date in the Withdrawal Act. It is critical that MPs now follow-through on their intentions with actions. The government must swiftly agree the length of delay with the EU and table a statutory instrument to change that date. Only then can the diversion of time, effort and money towards no-deal planning be halted.We know a tiny, tiny amount more about the next steps than we did a couple of days ago, but the problem is that the clock is still ticking and no deal is still the default.It may be folly to hope that parliament can agree on anything more than what it doesn’t want, but the Brexit process parted company with reason a long time ago, so what choice do business leaders have? 7.36pm GMT Here’s some political reaction to the evening’s action in the Commons:Given the political circumstances, it’s more vital than ever to continue to work closely with our nearest neighbours. It was good to see Irish Finance Minister @Paschald at No 11 this afternoon.We are talking to the government and to the attorney general at the moment to try and make a deal happen because we want to see Brexit working, we want to see it working for the whole of the UK in a way that doesn’t leave Northern Ireland behind.Whilst Parliament has voted to make it less likely that we will crash out with no deal, the ongoing chaos shows exactly why we need to stop the clock, revoke Article 50 and with Parliament in gridlock - give the public the final say on Brexit. https://t.co/iiP8HDNSMW 7.28pm GMT A brief note on the prime minister’s motion on delaying Brexit: The tellers announced it was passed by 412 votes to 202 but the division list records it as 413 to 202. We’re amending the blog to reflect that. 7.26pm GMT We’re getting the division list now and it appears that many in the government voted against the government’s preferred option – to delay Brexit.188 Tories votes against the Government’s motion in the name of @theresa_may tonight, only 112 Tory MPs supported it.Stephen Barclay, Penny Mordaunt, Gavin Williamson, Liam Fox, Andrea Leadsom, Chris Grayling, Liz Truss, and Alun Cairns all voted AGAINST the Article 50 extension. Astonishing to see the Brexit secretary vote against the government's preferred course.Barclay summed up the debate and will now presumably have go to Brussels to help negotiate the Article 50 extension, one he voted against. It is the maddest thing that has happened in politics this week. https://t.co/wk44ffqiiCChief whip Julian Smith abstained 7.12pm GMT Liz Truss, the chief secretary to the Treasury, has confirmed that she voted against the government motion. That does not count as a rebellion, because it was a free vote, but one can assume that Theresa May did not find it helpful.I voted against a delay to Brexit. As a delay was passed by Parliament, I want to see deal agreed ASAP so we can minimise to short, technical, extension. #brexit #getonwithitNEW: from inside the voting lobby. Fox, Barclay, Williamson and half the whips office in the No Lobby against the PM’s motion on the final vote. leadership klaxon 7.06pm GMT This is from Adam Price, leader of Plaid Cymru.Corbyn’s Labour Party abstaining tonight on a People’s Vote is the abdication of responsibility. Even worse is @fmwales supine support for the British party line. This is the very opposite of leadership. 6.58pm GMT This is from Nick Boles, one of the Conservative MPs most heavily involved in backbench attempts to get MPs to rule out a no-deal Brexit.It’s frustrating to have lost so narrowly but we have achieved our main goals: to stop no-deal Brexit on 29th March, to get the PM to seek an Article 50 extension and to secure amendable motion on 25th March so MPs can start debating Brexit compromises. 6.53pm GMT The European commission has issued a response to tonight’s vote. It is stressing that the UK would not automatically be granted an extension to article 50, and it says the EU would have to consider its own interests when deciding whether to agree one..@EU_Commission reaction to tonight’s vote - keen to remind that the ball is firmly in the EU’s court: “Article 50 requires the unanimous agreement of all 27 Member States. It will be for the European Council (Article 50) to consider such a request” - all on next week’s summit pic.twitter.com/UqRnegNuV1 6.48pm GMT After the final result was announced, Jeremy Corbyn rose on a point of order in the Commons to urge Theresa May to work for a consensus on Brexit. He said:After the last few days of government chaos and some defeats, all of us now have the opportunity and the responsibility to work together to find a solution to the crisis facing this country, where the government has so dramatically failed to do so.We have begun to hold meetings with members across the house to find a consensus and a compromise that meets the needs of our country. 6.45pm GMT Here are the Tory and Labour MPs who rebelled on the Hilary Benn amendment.Some 15 Tories defied the whip to vote in favour of it. They were: 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), Antoinette Sandbach (Eddisbury), Nicholas Soames (Mid Sussex), John Stevenson (Carlisle), Edward Vaizey (Wantage). 6.42pm GMT In what does not rank among the biggest surprises of this week’s round of Brexit voting, Steve Baker, the former Brexit minister who is now the chief organiser of the European Research Group (ERG), says he voted against extending article 50:I voted against https://t.co/sPvZyqB7rT 6.38pm GMT The big question now is whether the EU will agree to a UK request for an extension. My colleague Jennifer Rankin has some answers: Related: Brexit: how would an extension to article 50 work? 6.35pm GMT The Commons has now adjourned, after some criticism of Boris Johnson, the former foreign secretary, for his comments yesterday that money spent on non-recent child abuse investigations has been “spaffed up a wall”. 6.32pm GMT Have we had more ministerial rebellion this evening?Sky News’ Kate McCann says Andrea Leadsom, the leader of the House of Commons, was possibly among those who voted against the government on extending article 50:Understand Andrea Leadsom also voted AGAINST the motion to extend Article 50. Strong feeling that ministers support the PM's deal and would be OK with a short technical extension but want to leave on 29 March and will keep pushing to do so and against a long delay. 6.28pm GMT The motion passed means Theresa May will now ask the EU for an extension to article 50 until 30 June 2019 if her deal gets approved by next Wednesday. If they agree – as most assume they will – the UK will not be leaving the European Union on 29 March.If May’s deal is not passed by next Wednesday, then the motion warns that a long extension of article 50 is likely to be required, which would require the UK to take part in the European elections. 6.24pm GMT It’s 413* in favour, 202 against, a majority of 211.*In the Commons chamber, the tellers gave this result as 412 to 202. It was revised later on Parliament’s published division list and has been amended to reflect that. 6.13pm GMT MPs are now voting on the government motion.It says:That this house: (1) notes the resolutions of the house of 12 and 13 March, and accordingly agrees that the government will seek to agree with the European Union an extension of the period specified in article 50(3); 6.11pm GMT The Labour MP Chris Bryant decides not to press his amendment, which would have ordered the government not to bring the PM’s Brexit deal back for a third vote (see 4.21pm for details) to a vote. 6.08pm GMT MPs have voted down the Labour amendment by 318 votes to 302 - a majority of 16. 6.07pm GMT This is from Labour’s Ruth Smeeth. She has resigned as parliamentary private secretary to Tom Watson, the deputy Labour leader.I've resigned from Labour's front bench this evening in order to vote against a second referendum. This was a difficult decision but I have a duty to support the will of my constituents. We need to leave, and leave with a deal that works for the Potteries https://t.co/yOtP1jWsmS 5.58pm GMT MPs are now voting on the Labour amendment.This is what it says.Leave out paragraphs (2) and (3) and add: “(2) notes that this house has decisively rejected the withdrawal agreement and framework for the future relationship laid before the house and the proposition that the UK should leave the European Union without a withdrawal agreement and a framework for the future relationship; 5.53pm GMT The Benn amendment has been defeated by 314 votes to 312 – a majority of two. 5.49pm GMT This is from the Labour peer Andrew Adonis, who is an arch-remainer.The defeat of Lucy Powell’s amendment, for an Art 50 extension only to the end of June, is significant & very good. The presumption therefore is that the Commons would support a long extension, which is what we need 5.46pm GMT The Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle voted both for and against the Wollaston amendment. That is normally something MPs do if they want to actively register an abstention.Otherwise, if MPs do not vote in a division, it is not clear whether they have abstained out of choice, whether they were paired, or whether they were unavailable for some other reason. 5.37pm GMT There were also 18 Labour MPs who voted against a second referendum. You can read the names on the division list here. 5.34pm GMT The Lucy Powell amendment to the Hilary Benn amendment has been rejected by 314 votes to 311 - a majority of three.MPs are now voting on the Benn amendment. (See 5.26pm.) 5.30pm GMT Some 25 Labour MPs voted for the Wollaston amendment calling for a second referendum. You can read the names on the division list here. 5.26pm GMT MPs are now voting on an amendment from Lucy Powell to the Hilary Benn amendment.Here is the text of the Benn amendment.Line 4, leave out from “article 50 (3)” to end and add: “to enable the House of Commons to find a way forward that can command majority support; 2. orders accordingly that on Wednesday 20 March –Second vote on @LucyMPowell Amdt to @hilarybennmp Amdt (i) - Result circa 1730 pic.twitter.com/urHqz5K5Ck 5.17pm GMT MPs have crushed the second referendum amendment, by 334 votes to 85 - a majority of 249. 5.14pm GMT The Labour MP Wes Streeting and many of his colleagues in favour of a second referendum have written an open letter explaining why they are abstaining.Alongside other leading supporters of a people’s vote, I am abstaining on TIG amendment. This statement alongside other colleagues explains why. We hope that our supporters outside Parliament trust our judgement and trust that we’re doing the right thing for the right reasons. pic.twitter.com/IcpBqaoNvD 5.13pm GMT From the New Statesman’s Stephen Bush.This vote is all about providing a leaflet for SNP, Plaid Cymru, Lib Dems and Notorious TIG: every reason to believe it will be effective. 5.12pm GMT I'm told @TulipSiddiq has voted for the second referendum amendment but as she is on maternity leave, she had to rebel by proxy 5.11pm GMT This is not the first time MPs have voted on a second referendum. There was a division during the committee stage of the EU withdrawal bill in December 2017. Labour abstained on that occasion, as they are doing now, and only 23 MPs voted in favour (including nine Labour MPs who defied the whip). 5.08pm GMT The Lib Dems are voting for the Wollaston amendment. The Lib Dem MP Layla Moran has just posted this picture of the empty aye lobby on Twitter.Voting for a #PeoplesVote. Where is the rest of the Labour Party? A few notable exceptions but... pic.twitter.com/pSP9C6wJDW 5.07pm GMT This is the first time in recent months that MPs have voted on a second referendum.But, with Labour following the People’s Vote advice and not backing the amendment, on the grounds that it is the wrong time for a vote on this issue, it is going to fail badly.Labour referendum backers are mainly all rowing in behind frontbench not backing the Soubry TIG/ SNP/ LD referendum amendment https://t.co/upHOS7UiJhLabour making a display of their abstention on the Wollaston referendum amendment: pic.twitter.com/erfk9UqI15 5.01pm GMT Sarah Wollaston moves her amendment.MPs are voting now.Line 1, leave out from “house” to end and add “instructs the prime minister to request an extension to the article 50 period at the European council in March 2019 sufficient for the purposes of legislating for and conducting a public vote in which the people of the United Kingdom may give their consent for either leaving the European Union on terms to be determined by parliament or retaining the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union.” 4.59pm GMT Barclay claims that Labour is trying to stop Brexit.He says this is a time for responsibility. But Corbyn’s motion ducks responsibility, he says. 4.58pm GMT Stephen Barclay, the Brexit secretary, is winding up the debate now.He is focusing mostly on Labour, claiming that Labour’s Brexit policy includes proposals that are mutually incompatible. 4.54pm GMT Blomfield says MPs should not accept the government’s argument that the UK would have to hold European elections for an article 50 extension to go beyond June. He says Lord Keen of Elie, the advocate general for Scotland, said so in the Lords recently. Bomfield quotes Keen, who told peers:The noble Lord’s point that the EU Parliament could sit without the UK having had an election to the European Parliament is correct. 4.50pm GMT In the Commons the Brexit debate is coming to an end.Winding up for Labour, the shadow Brexit minister, Paul Blomfield, criticises the government for trying to get MPs to back a deal already rejected by the Commons twice. He says Theresa May should adopt the approach set out in Labour’s motion, and find a parliamentary majority for a new approach. 4.43pm GMT If you are a remainer (well, actually, if you are at all interested in Brexit), you might enjoy a Brexit: What Next for Remainers? Guardian Live event taking place at the Barbican in London on Tuesday next week. There are more details here. Membership Event: Brexit: What next for Remainers? 4.37pm GMT Simon Coveney, the Irish deputy prime minister and foreign minister, has said the EU may offer the UK a 21-month article 50 extension. In an interview with RTE, he said a long extension was “likely to happen” if there was no agreement in the UK parliament on a deal. If you have a long extension of say 21 months, to the end of 2020, or whatever the period would be, well then Britain has a legal entitlement to have representation in the European parliament.Some of the European prime ministers will be quite demanding, I think. They are open to an extension of time but they want to know in what detail by providing that extension of time how they get certainty. 4.28pm GMT Theresa May chaired a political cabinet today. As is customary these days, it wasn’t long before some snippets emerged.This is from the Times’ Francis Elliott.Read out from political cabinet:May "went batshit" at Remain rebelsClark's effort to defend himself "ended badly"Rudd "bashful".Latest from CabinetTheresa May raised concerns about frequency & scale of leaks from CabinetShe said there are too many and they are happening too oftenShe also suggested some ministers are being self-serving and are posturingCox made a 'unifying' intervention at end 4.24pm GMT Conservative Brexiters are to ask a group of lawyers to examine a new proposal to exit the backstop using article 62 of the Vienna convention. (See 9.48am, 1.47pm and 2.35pm.)The ERG will ask lawyers including the QC Martin Howe, the only non-MP on their “star chamber” of lawyers, to examine how that could work as a unilateral exit mechanism 4.21pm GMT The Labour MP Chris Bryant has tabled an amendment, that will be put to a vote, saying Theresa May should not be allowed to put her deal to MPs again because Commons rules say the house should not be asked to vote on the same proposition during a session. It says:At end, add “ (4) notes that Erksine May states that a motion or an amendment which is the same, in substance, as a question which has been decided in the affirmative or negative during the current session may not be brought forward again during that session; and therefore orders the government not to move a further motion asking the house to approve the withdrawal agreement and framework for the future partnership that the house declined to approve on 15 January 2019 and 12 March 2019.”.There are historical precedents for the way in such matters are regarded. I do not need to treat of them now and no ruling is required now. There may be people who have an opinion about it. I am not really preoccupied with that, but a ruling would be made about that matter at the appropriate time, and I am grateful to [Angela Eagle] for reminding me that such a ruling might at some point in the future be required. 4.12pm GMT The Press Association has filed more from what Donald Trump said at his meeting with Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister. The US president also said he was opposed to a second referendum on Brexit. He explained:I don’t think another vote would be possible because it would be very unfair to the people that won. They’d say” ‘What do you mean, you’re going to take another vote?’ So that would be tough. I thought it would happen, it did happen, and both sides are very, very cemented in. It’s a tough situation. It’s a shame. I’m surprised at how badly it’s all gone from the standpoint of a negotiation. I gave the prime minister my ideas on how to negotiate it and I think you would have been successful. She didn’t listen to that and that’s fine - she’s got to do what she’s got to do. I think it could have been negotiated in a different manner, frankly. I hate to see everything being ripped apart now. 3.59pm GMT In her speech Yvette Cooper acknowledged that an article 50 extension lasting more than two or three months would clash with the European elections. But she said she did not accept the government’s argument that the UK would inevitably have to elect new MEPs if it wanted to stay in the EU into the summer.She urged MPs to read a thread posted on Twitter by Eleanor Sharpston, an advocate general at the European court of justice. Sharpston showed that other alternatives were available, Cooper said.1. Following two successive votes rejecting the draft withdrawal agreement (DWA) (432-202 against and 391-242 against) and this evening’s vote (321-278) to reject any no deal Brexit, here is a personal reflection/contribution on possible extensions of time under Article 50 TEU.Chain continues!25. Article 50 TEU (withdrawals from the EU) is the mirror provision of Article 49 TEU (accessions to the EU). Article 49 TEU served as the legal base for the 2011 Treaty of Accession of Croatia to the European Union.29. One way of ensuring continuing UK representation in the EP during an Article 50 extension might therefore be for the UK to agree with the EU just to extend the mandates of the UK MEPs who have already been democratically elected and who have been sitting in the current EP.30. Another possible solution might be to revert to the (old Parliamentary Assembly) practice of sending nominated MPs from the UK, rather than directly elected MEPs, to participate in the EP during that period.31. No doubt other mechanisms could be envisaged also. What would be necessary would be to ensure that the EU-27 could go ahead and elect a new EP as scheduled, and to arrange for the British MEPs to sit in that new EP as additional members on a temporary ‘Brexit-limited’ basis. 3.48pm GMT The Labour MP Yvette Cooper is speaking in the Commons now. She is one of the main supporters of the Benn amendment calling for indicative votes and she says the government should have done this a long time ago. She acknowledges that David Lidington unveiled a plan for indicative votes in his speech, but she says this should not be dependent on there being a long article 50 extension and the UK taking part in the European elections. 3.43pm GMT Here are some fuller quotes from what President Trump said during his photocall with Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister. (See 3.52pm.)It’s a very complex thing right now, it’s tearing a country apart, it’s actually tearing a lot of countries apart and it’s a shame it has to be that way but I think we will stay right in our lane.I’m surprised at how badly it has all gone from a stand point of negotiations but I gave the prime minister my ideas of how to negotiate it, she didn’t listen to that and that’s fine but it could have been negotiated in a different manner.I think they are probably going to have to do something because right now they are in the midst of a very short period of time, at the end of the month and they are not going to be able to do that. 3.34pm GMT In the Commons Sarah Wollaston, the former Tory who is now an Independent Group MP, acknowledges that her second referendum amendment may fail today. But if it does, they can bring it back, she says.She says MPs in favour of the idea should vote for it today, because the Labour front bench may never get round to supporting it, she says. 3.32pm GMT In Washington, during a photocall with the Irish prime minister, Leo Varakdar, the US president, Donald Trump, said that he was surprised “how badly” Brexit had gone. “I think it could have been negotiated in a different manner,” he said.Trump also said he did not think a second referendum on Brexit would be possible because it would be “unfair”. 3.26pm GMT In the Commons debate Ian Blackford, the SNP leader at Westminster, accused Labour of cowardice for refusing to back another referendum. He said: A shiver has run down the front bench of the Labour party looking for a spine to run up and it has not found one. 3.16pm GMT The DUP leader, Arlene Foster, has signalled her party is ready to do a deal to end the Brexit impasse, saying that the prime minister must prove only that the constitutional integrity of the UK would be preserved, my colleague Jessica Elgot reports. Related: DUP leader ready to strike deal with May to end Brexit impasse 3.10pm GMT Nicola Sturgeon has increased the risk of confusing Scottish voters, and her own activists, over her competing strategies in backing a second Brexit referendum and a fresh independence vote.She implied on Sky yesterday she was close to calling for a second independence referendum, because she has a mandate to stage one since the SNP won the most seats in the 2016 Holyrood and 2017 UK elections, and did so on a promise of holding a fresh independence vote if there was a material change in circumstances (in other words, Brexit).And when we get to the end of this current phase of negotiations, which I hope is very soon, then I will set out how I intend to exercise that mandate. 2.42pm GMT Best for Britain, the anti-Brexit campaign that favours a second referendum, has put out a statement saying that it does not want MPs to vote for that today. A spokesperson said:Best for Britain, like a majority of the country, believe that giving the people the final say is the only credible solution to the Brexit mess we’ve been left in after three years of government failure and parliamentary gridlock. We believe bringing this issue before parliament today will not truly test the will of the house for a public vote. The debate today must focus on the pressing need for an extension to article 50 to confirm parliament’s rejection of a no deal cliff-edge on 29 March and protect the country from a damaging disorderly exit. 2.36pm GMT And here is John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, explaining Labour’s decision to abstain on the Wollaston second referendum amendment later.The People’s Vote campaign is clear that today is not the day to press the public vote issue in Parliament. It reflects what I have said in various interviews today. Careful judgement has to be exercised at each stage of this process. https://t.co/4GrLTlq9c1 2.35pm GMT Turning back to article 62 of the Vienna convention, and the suggestion that it could allow the UK to escape the backstop (see 9.48am and 1.47pm), here are some tweets from Lorand Bartels, a reader in international law at Cambridge University, arguing - well, that this notion is rubbish.@pmdfoster Art 62 VCLT comes with conditions. First, the changed ‘circumstances’ cannot have been foreseen by the parties. So if the treaty provides for these, Art 62 does not apply. Second, it’s not about breach, but about bare facts. 1/n pic.twitter.com/q2IOv8G2ihSo here we are talking about the emergence of unicorns (to use the vernacular) that are not presently foreseen, which ‘radically transforms the obligations’ of the treaty. But the treaty regulates the emergence of those unicorns. So how can Art 62 apply? 2/nFns for the above: ICJ case Gabčíkovo-Nagymaros [1997] ICJ Rep 7, para 111 et seqFinally, the result of all of this is to terminate the treaty. That means the whole treaty, not just the backstop. That’s pretty drastic and maybe not so great for the UK. 2.26pm GMT Speaking from Washington DC, Arlene Foster, the DUP leader, has told the BBC that this stage of the Brexit process could be the moment for a deal. Commenting on reports that the DUP have been in talks with Geoffrey Cox, the attorney general, about revisions to the backstop legal advice (see 9.48am), she said:It’s not about the attorney general changing his advice. It’s about finding the right deal. It’s about not leaving Northern Ireland behind when the rest of the UK is leaving. Brexit is only two weeks away. When you come to the end of a negotiation, that’s when you really start to see the white’s of people’s eyes and you get to the point of a deal. 2.17pm GMT The Labour MP Lisa Nandy has written a new article for the Guardian explaining why she is opposed to a second referendum. Here is an extract.It is playing with fire to suggest we can settle the defining question of our age, affecting every aspect of our lives, communities and the future of the planet, through a referendum that large numbers passionately believe is illegitimate. In May there will be elections to a new European parliament and if we choose to pursue a referendum Britain will have to take part. The last referendum was ugly and divisive with claims on both sides that were untrue. The debate has since worsened. Cries of traitor, which used to echo around far-right rallies, are routinely heard in Westminster. To re-elect MEPs to a parliament we promised to leave months earlier, while also seeking a referendum in terms that are not considered legitimate by many, is like walking into a room full of explosives with a lit match. We are breaking our democracy. Related: A flawed second referendum could break our democracy | Lisa Nandy 2.15pm GMT Labour’s Wes Streeting says there is “a considerable degree of discomfort” among Labour MPs who support a second referendum about the position of some on the Labour frontbench. He asks if the party will give wholehearted support to the Kyle/Wilson plan for a confirmatory second referendum (ie, backing a Brexit deal, subject to it being put to a public vote) if it comes to a vote. “Yes,” says Starmer. 2.12pm GMT Challenged about Labour’s failure to support the second referendum amendment, Starmer says:It is obvious that we are supportive of the principle. It’s a question of timing. 2.05pm GMT Labour sources are confirming that its MPs will be whipped to abstain on the Wollaston second referendum amendment – which is what Starmer effectively said in the Commons a few moments ago, although he did not put it in those terms. 2.03pm GMT Here is the Plaid Cyrmu MP Jonathan Edwards on Labour not backing the Wollaston second referendum amendment.The Labour party not supporting a final say referendum cross party amendment today. No amount of smoke grenades they use to justify this betrayal will survive the judgement of history. The vote is tonight - if Labour don't support it will be to their eternal shame. 2.00pm GMT Labour’s Ben Bradshaw says many Labour MPs will be tempted to vote for the Wollaston second referendum. He says, although Starmer is in favour, other senior people in the party give out different messages on this topic.Starmer says he has always tried to speak with a clear voice on this. 1.58pm GMT The SNP leader at Westminster, Ian Blackford, says we are now two weeks away from Brexit. He says MPs now have the chance to vote for a second referendum. Labour will be found out for what they are, “a fraud”, he says. 1.54pm GMT In the chamber Anna Soubry, the former Tory who is now an Independent Group MP, asks Starmer how Labour will vote on the Wollaston second referendum amendment.Starmer says he has played a role in pushing Labour towards a public vote. 1.51pm GMT This is from the Labour MP Helen Hayes, justifying a Labour decision not to vote for a second referendum amendment today.Tuesday was about defeating a Brexit deal which will be disastrous for the UK; yesterday was about taking calamity of no deal off the table; today main task is to secure an extension to Article 50 to enable next steps, including #PeoplesVote to be democratically worked through 1.47pm GMT Sir Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit secretary, is responding now for LabourHe says a simple motion calling for an extension to article 50, to allow more time for MPs to agree a Brexit solution, would pass by a hefty majority. 1.38pm GMT Lidington is now talking about the Labour amendment.It says the government should extend article 50 “to provide parliamentary time for this house to find a majority for a different approach”. 1.32pm GMT And this is from the Telegraph’s Stephen Swinford, on government whipping.NewThe Government is as expected whipping against the Benn amendmentTold we’re not likely to see a repeat of last abstentions by Remain ministers but let’s see... 1.31pm GMT This is from my colleague Jessica Elgot.New - Phil Wilson tells me he is abstaining on People’s Vote amendment because of the timing. Big ref supporter. He is behind the yet-to-be-put Kyle-Wilson amendment which would approve the deal subject to a second referendum. Very significant that group backing Labour position. 1.30pm GMT Back in the Commons Lidington is now talking about the Hilary Benn amendment.He says it is undemocratic, because it allows a day to be set aside for debate on a non-government motion provided it is backed by at least 25 MPs, including MPs from five different parties. (This is the motion that Benn intends to be used to create the mechanism for an “indicative votes” process.) 1.25pm GMT The People’s Vote campaign has now put out a statement echoing Alastair Campbell’s tweet (see 12.57am), arguing that now is not the time for MPs to vote for a second referendum. A spokesman for the campaign said:The People’s Vote campaign does not instruct its supporters in parliament on how to vote. We recognise there is a range of opinions on when to press the case for the public being given the final say, which means some of these MPs will vote for the Wollaston amendment, some may vote against, and some will abstain.But 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. 1.22pm GMT This is from my colleague Jessica Elgot.New - Senior Labour source says they currently expect whip to abstain on second referendum. Things could change though. 1.12pm GMT The Brexit department has published a short, two-page note setting out the thinking behind the government’s motion today. It is here (pdf). 1.08pm GMT Lidington says, if the UK wants to delay Brexit beyond the European elections (which take place at the end of May), the UK would have to take part in those elections.The Tory pro-European Antoinette Sandbach asks if he has looked at the legal view suggesting the UK could follow the Croatian example. Croatia found an alternative to holding elections. 1.05pm GMT This is what David Lidington said a moment ago about the government allowing “indicative votes” to allow MPs to agree an alternative approach if no deal is passed by the time of the EU summit starting next Thursday. He said:If [passing a deal by next Wednesday] 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: that the government recognises that the house will require time to consider the potential ways forward in such a scenario.I can conform today that 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. 12.57pm GMT Alastair Campbell, Tony Blair’s former communications chief and a leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, says it is wrong for Sarah Wollaston to push her second referendum amendment today.Wrong to press @peoplesvote_uk amendment today when the issue is extension. I think wrong time and I fear the wrong reasons. Any doubts about that confirmed by @CarolineFlintMP support. PV is possible solution to current crisis not option within it. More PV opportunities ahead 12.52pm GMT Lidington is now explaining the government motion. (See 12.41pm.)He says, if MPs do not pass a Brexit deal by the time of the EU summit starting next week, the government will let MPs find an alternative way forward in the following two weeks. 12.41pm GMT Here is the text of the government motionThat this house: (1) notes the resolutions of the house of 12 and 13 March, and accordingly agrees that the government will seek to agree with the European Union an extension of the period specified in article 50(3);(2) agrees that, if the house has passed a resolution approving the negotiated withdrawal agreement and the framework for the future relationship for the purposes of section 13(1) (b) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 by 20 March 2019, then the government will seek to agree with the European Union a one-off extension of the period specified in article 50(3) for a period ending on 30 June 2019 for the purpose of passing the necessary EU exit legislation; and 12.38pm GMT The DUP MP Ian Paisley asks about Michael Gove’s claim yesterday that a no-deal Brexit could lead to the return of direct rule.Lidington says he did not hear what Gove said yesterday, but he says Gove can answer questions on this. 12.37pm GMT David Lidington, the Cabinet Office minister and Theresa May’s de facto deputy, is opening the debate for the government.Labour’s Ian Murray asks if the government will bring “meaningful vote three” to the Commons before 20 March. 12.32pm GMT Selection of Amendments. Votes at 5pm pic.twitter.com/8yXv1b8pgL 12.31pm GMT The Labour MP Caroline Flint uses a point of order to say she is pleased Bercow has selected the Wollaston amendment for a second referendum. She says it is the first chance that MPs will get to vote against the idea. 12.23pm GMT The Tory Brexiter Mark Francois used a point of order to complain about Bercow’s failure to call the Lee Rowley amendment ruling out a second referendum. It has been signed by more than 100 MPs.Bercow will not go into detail about why he did not select it, but he says sometimes MPs are disappointed by his selection of amendments. 12.20pm GMT John Bercow, the speaker, says he is calling four amendments, plus an amendment to an amendment.They are: 12.10pm GMT The pro-European Tory Ken Clarke told Sky News that the government should ask the EU for a long delay to article 50, so that it can rethink Brexit. He said:I think we should suggest to the Europeans a good, long delay. Go back to square one and work out ... over a proper time, the final relationship. 12.03pm GMT Here is a Commons document (pdf) with the full list of amendments to the main Brexit motion - including those not on the order paper because they were submitted late. 11.59am GMT Labour will not be backing a second referendum amendment tonight, John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, has told ITV.NEW: @johnmcdonnellMP tells me Labour will not be backing amendment for second referendum tonight, but could do next week. Also still undecided on whether to back Benn/Cooper/Letwin amendment in indicative votes, which lots of Labour backbenchers are supporting. 11.55am GMT The Labour MP Chris Bryant has tabled a manuscript amendment to today’s motion that would stop Theresa May putting her deal to a vote again, the Mirror’s Dan Bloom reports.NEW: @RhonddaBryant amendment to block Theresa May from a third vote on her Brexit deal, and get Britain off the "merry go round". pic.twitter.com/DNfEAEEnNZ 11.50am GMT This is from the Spectator’s James Forsyth.Expectation in Whitehall is that MV3 will be on TuesdayAnother theory doing the rounds among cabinet ministers is that May could make the next meaningful vote a free vote. It might seem bizarre to suggest that the way for the Prime Minister to win approval for her deal is to relax the whip. But advocates of this approach argue that the government doesn’t have much to lose: pretty much every Tory MP who wants to rebel already has. A free vote, however, would feel less partisan. This might encourage more opposition MPs to vote for the agreement. Tory whips suspect there are about 70 Labour MPs who don’t want a second referendum, and who might be joined by another 30 prepared to vote for May’s deal if they thought it might break the impasse. This is, essentially, what Ted Heath did in 1971. He offered a free vote for Conservative MPs on entry into the European Economic Community to make it easier for Labour MPs (such as Roy Jenkins) to back the government. 11.44am GMT There must have been something about Brexit on Fox News this morning, because Donald Trump has decided to tweet a message that seems intended to cheer Brexiters.My Administration looks forward to negotiating a large scale Trade Deal with the United Kingdom. The potential is unlimited! 11.42am GMT We’ve had a fairly long and largely unilluminating lobby briefing with Theresa May’s spokesman ahead of the latest Brexit debate. We have learned that May herself will not speak in today’s debate – her voice is still bad – and it will be opened by her de facto deputy, David Lidington. The closing address will be from Stephen Barclay, the Brexit secretary. He will also make the usual point of order after the vote to announce the next steps. There is also a political cabinet taking place at Downing Street at 1.30pm, we were told. No official news on whether there will be a new meaningful vote on Monday or Tuesday next week – although that seems inevitable. 11.32am GMT Here are some of the names on the Hilary Benn manuscript amendment. (See 10.53am.)Amendment laid by MPs from Conservative, Labour, Lib Dem and SNP parties and backed too by TiGs. Conservative backers: Letwin, Grieve, Spelman, Soames, Djanogly.. plus... (I have more...) https://t.co/SvCiSp7NxEMore names of backers of Benn- Letwin-Cooper. Justine Greening and Philip Lee on there and list growing. Cross-party #Brexit alliance is on steroids today... pic.twitter.com/abnYRK80PQ 11.27am GMT Mark Francois, the Tory Brexiter and vice chair of the European Research Group, told the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show earlier that it was hard to see how Theresa May was really in power given that some cabinet ministers defied a three-line whip last night and refused to vote against the motion ruling out a no-deal Brexit for good. He said:If you do not have collective responsibility, ministers are supposed to support each other work together as a government. This is how our constitution works. Under our constitution, if a minister cannot support the policy of the government, they have to resign, which is what Sarah Newton honourably did. Collective responsibility fell off its horse and died [last night]. It’s not the fault of the whips’ office. They are not giving the orders. You may as well dissolve the whips’ office and send them all off for a two-year holiday ...I have seen better run parish councils than what I saw in the House of Commons last night. 11.14am GMT In the Commons, during the business statement a few minutes ago, the Tory Brexiter Sir Edward Leigh asked for a debate on the possibility that the UK could use article 62 of the Vienna convention to exit the backstop. (See 9.48am.) Andrea Leadsom, the leader of the Commons, said Geoffrey Cox, the attorney general, had already considered this matter. But then she added, cryptically: “I’m sure if he has more to say on this matter, he will come to the house to say it.” 11.08am GMT This is from Guy Verhofstadt, the European parliament’s lead Brexit spokesman. He is opposed to a long article 50 extension of the kind proposed by Donald Tusk. (See 9.11am.)Under no circumstances an extension in the dark! Unless there is a clear majority in the House of Commons for something precise, there is no reason at all for the European Council to agree on a prolongation. Even the motion tabled for this evening by the UK Gov. recognises this. https://t.co/BNJVVT7KlwEuropean parliament is split on this.. Socialist group wld quite fancy a long extension.. https://t.co/tbtC567UDJ 10.53am GMT ITV’s Paul Brand has details of the new Hilary Benn amendment to the Brexit motion being debated later. It would set aside next Wednesday for a debate on “indicative votes” on Brexit alternatives.BREAKING: Benn/Boles/Cooper/Letwin amendment would allow MPs to take control of the business of the House, a bit like similar amendments attempted to in the past. Would give MPs chance to find their own solution to Brexit. Very significant. pic.twitter.com/7SfoajFGz7 10.49am GMT This is from Labour whips, an official account.The @CommonsLeader announces next week’s business, this is either fantasy business or what can only be described as SI filler. ??? The Government need to provide parliamentary time for the House of Commons to find a majority for a different approach on Brexit, not waste time. pic.twitter.com/SGlgSsE8m0 10.48am GMT Andrea Leadsom, the leader of the Commons, is announcing the Commons business for next week.She has not timetabled a Brexit debate next week - even though the government motion being debated later sets Wednesday as the deadline for Theresa May’s deal to be passed. 10.41am GMT These are from the Telegraph’s Steven Swinford.New:There's *another* Cabinet at 1.30 today to discuss the A50 vote, amendments and everything afterAfter last night's explosive mini-Cabinet, which proved a precursor to the chaos that followed, expect fireworksFeelings are running highGovernment whips are being very, very clear about arrangements today after last night's chaosThey've already emailed Tory MPs making clear that a three line whip is in place as of 10.30 and stating that whipping arrangements will be circulated as soon as amendments are selected 10.35am GMT Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister, says Theresa May should agree to a long article 50 extension, as Donald Tusk is proposing (see 9.11am), and develop an alternative approach to Brexit.Instead of the PM pathetically using this to bully MPs into accepting a profoundly bad, already twice defeated deal, we should grab it with both hands and get out of the #brexit mess. https://t.co/czcOnVFHtPIf you are a Brexiteer, what does it say about your project if it has to be founded on a deal that a majority believes to be fundamentally flawed. That cannot be the way to proceed - which is why PM should accept defeat, change course and accept this opportunity for a rethink 10.30am GMT Nigel Evans, a Tory Brexiter, said this morning that Theresa May needs to reassert her authority after some cabinet ministers defied a three-line whip and refused to vote against the motion last night ruling out a no-deal Brexit for good. He said:[May’s] authority was openly defied by cabinet ministers and other ministers. She needs to reassert her authority. We have to have collective responsibility in government, otherwise it just simply doesn’t work. Apparently cabinet ministers were confused last night as to whether they were on a three-line whip or not. Well, funnily enough, I received a text that told me on my phone that I was on a three-line whip. They received the same text. It’s amazing that you can be a cabinet minister and still not know what a three-line whip text means. 10.26am GMT You can read today’s order paper here (pdf). The government motion being debated today, and the amendments tabled overnight (eight of them) are all there, starting on page 6.Helpfully, my colleague Peter Walker has written a summary of what all the amendments say. It is here. Related: MPs' amendments for the Brexit article 50 extension vote Hearing from several sources that a cross-party amendment in Hilary Benn's name is about to be tabled setting out a route to indicative votes before Brussels summit next week. 10.06am GMT George Freeman, a Conservative former minister and chair of the prime minister’s policy board until the end of 2017, has said that Theresa May should offer to resign after Brexit to help persuade Tory MPs to back her deal.This chaos can’t continue. Something has to give. We need an orderly Brexit on Mar 29. 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. 9.48am GMT On Tuesday Geoffrey Cox, the attorney general, published his legal advice on the new backstop assurances obtained by the prime minister and his harsh conclusion - “the legal risk [of being kept in the backstop] remains unchanged” - sunk any slim chance Theresa May had of winning the vote on her deal.But, as my colleagues Rowena Mason and Rajeev Syal report in their overnight story, what was published on Tuesday was not the final word. The DUP and the European Research Group, which represents Tories pushing for a harder Brexit, are exploring whether Cox can give a view on whether article 62 of the Vienna convention could give the UK a let-out from the backstop. Article 62 says that, if there is a fundamental change of circumstances, a treaty can no longer apply. Related: ERG signals it could back May's Brexit deal if legal advice is clearer We are in conversations with the government. We’ll keep those conversations going because we want to get a deal ... I think we need to finish those conversations before we decide what we’re going to do. I hear noises that it’s possibly close, that they are not far away from getting what they want.Having argued (& lost) main ICJ case on #fundamentalchange and Art 62 VCLT, at a loss to see how it offers a way out of NI Protocol, as @Jacob_Rees_Mogg implies - para 104 of judgment https://t.co/c0txs956q9 @Peston @VictoriaPrentis @Keir_Starmer @Geoffrey_Cox @AndrewSparrow pic.twitter.com/yOhaEa8yo1The attorney general’s legal view is clearly very important and this is a very complex agreement and many other eminent lawyers are coming out with views and interpretations. And I’m sure the attorney general will want to consider very carefully all the evidence, all the qualified opinion that there is around this issue. 9.11am GMT Donald Tusk, the president of the European council, has just posted this on Twitter.During my consultations ahead of #EUCO, I 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. 8.58am GMT Good morning. I’m Andrew Sparrow, taking over from Matthew Weaver.For the third day in a row, we have a big Brexit vote. Tuesday’s was the “meaningful vote” (yes/no on the deal), yesterday’s was on ruling out no deal, and today’s is on extending article 50.Latest:There will be a FREE VOTE on the government’s motion this afternoon to delay Brexit for an indeterminate period Decisions on amendments will happen later when they’re selected 8.47am GMT Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom says a no-deal Brexit has not been taken off the table despite the votes last night.Speaking to reporters she warned that European members states could refuse an extension or insist on a long extension. She said: What we are seeking to do today is to get the will of parliament on what it does want. If does want to extend article 50. And if that what parliament decides then the prime minister will go to the EU and seek an extension. But the really important point here is that she can’t insist on it, and the EU may well have ideas of their own either to refuse or indeed to put conditions on it. So by no means is any option off the table at present. 8.40am GMT Stephen Hammond, a health minister who abstained on the no-deal vote, claimed ministers were given assurances that they would not be sacked if they defied the government whip in this way. “I personally had not been [given assurances] I believe some colleagues may have been,” he told the Today programme. Yesterday was a day of many contradictions. Initially there were two amendments both against government policy. One was a free vote, one was whipped against. I voted against it in the hope that I could vote for the prime minister’s motion last night to make sure there was a smooth and orderly Brexit and there would not be a no-deal on 29 March. 8.22am GMT Conservative MP Johnny Mercer tweeted a screengrab of some abuse he’d received over the latest Commons vote.I actually voted the way this guy asked me to. The madness of BREXIT means he will figure this out at some point today and call me a ‘hero’. Who would be an MP example #562: pic.twitter.com/Y7SitdGBko 8.13am GMT The shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, has urged MPs on all sides to seek a Brexit compromise.Speaking to Sky News he said: The problem with the prime minister’s approach is that she hasn’t come to parliament and sought a compromise. She came to parliament and basically said ‘my deal or no deal’ and she’s threaten parliament. And MPs on all political parties said ‘we’re not having that’. Yesterday Philip Hammond said he would oppose a no-deal and he was interested in compromise, then he disappeared, he never voted against no-deal. What we are saying to Philip Hammond is ‘you and other MPs in your party are looking for a compromise join us now in working through that compromise’.”I think what will happen is exactly Labour party conference decided. First of all we have got to prevent a reckless deal that the Conservatives are bringing forward [and] make sure we prevent a no-deal. We want a general election if we can’t get that, we have said we will bring our own deal forward and then if necessary, once parliament has agreed deal, if some MPs we will only vote for this if it goes back to the people, that will have to be the case.Jeremy Corbyn has already met those [Conservative] MPs who are looking at the Norway model. Our own proposals are most probably the bedrock of a compromise that can be achieved because they got quite a warm response from Brussels. Let’s try and get a compromise. There may now be a willingness in parliament that there wasn’t before. 7.54am GMT The chancellor, Philip Hammond, has defended his decision to obey the government whip and vote in favour of a no-deal last night despite his objection to such an outcome.Speaking to Sky News he predicted that his cabinet colleagues who abstained on the vote would not be sacked. No deal on the 29 March is off the table. The problem with so called amendment A which Yvette Cooper moved last night, that the House of Commons collectively stamping its foot and saying ‘no no deal’ doesn’t actually answer the question how do we deliver this outcome because the default in our legislation is no deal. And the prime minister has always been abundantly clear about this. The choices are, no deal, no Brexit or the deal. You can’t just say ‘we don’t want no deal’ without saying whether you are going to achieve that by having a deal or by having no Brexit.A number of colleagues abstained on the final motion. We had a difficult situation. We were all expecting to have a free vote on the government’s motion where people could have expressed their view about leaving on 29 March. I would, of course, have voted for it, rejecting the idea of leaving on the 29 March with no deal. But because of the amendment that option was not presented to us. Some of us felt that we had to follow the logic of having already voting against amendment A, and carry that through and vote against it again. Others felt they couldn’t do that because they wanted to clearly show their support for the view that no deal is not a good outcome.It was a very difficult and confused situation because people had been offered a free vote on the government’s motion and once the government’s motion became amended there was some confusion about what the position was.That’s what some of my colleagues who voted against the prime minister’s deal need to think very carefully about. It is clear that the prime minister has to find a consensus around something and if isn’t the prime minister’s deal, I think it is likely to be something which is much less to the taste of those on the hard Brexit wing of my party.If there is clear evidence that there is a body of support growing for the prime minister’s deal, then the House of Commons will find a way to allow that support to be expressed. Quite a number of colleagues changed their minds on this issue between the January vote and the vote earlier this week. And talks continue and some of my colleagues will be thinking very hard about what the alternatives are now.The European Union is signalling that only if we have a deal is it likely to be willing to grant a short technical extension to get the legislation through. If we don’t have a deal ... then it is quite possible that the EU may insist on a significantly longer period. And again that will be point at which those of my colleagues who voted against the prime minister’s deal need to think very hard about how they want to proceed. .@adamboultonSKY asks: 'How many more meaningful votes can we have?' @PhilipHammondUK says if there is "clear evidence" of growing support for the PM's #Brexit deal, the Commons will "find a way to allow that thought to be expressed".Latest here: https://t.co/0KWuGBfKbd pic.twitter.com/zysjgH2PwW 7.21am GMT Andrew Bridgen, one of the members of the ERG who has twice oted against Theresa May’s deal, appears in no mood to change his mind in a third meaningful vote.Speaking on the Today programme he accused May of adopting a “scorched earth policy” by trying to take out every option apart from her withdrawal agreement. He described the deal as a Hotel California Brexit from which the UK could never leave the EU. 6.58am GMT My colleagues Heather Stewart and Rajeev Syal have this devastating assessment of May’s cabinet in chaos yesterday, which, as the Guardian reports on its front page, “ruptured three ways... in an unprecedented night of Tory splits.” It begins:Throughout yet another neuralgic day of Brexit debate at Westminster, the deep divisions in the Conservative party were again on excruciating display.Collective responsibility has long been suspended, as shifting groups of ministers and backbenchers pursue their own favoured Brexit outcome. But the chaotic votes of Wednesday night smacked of a government falling apart. Related: How May’s Brexit deal laid bare Tories’ deep divisions over Europe 6.51am GMT This is from last night, but worth re-visiting, because we all need a chuckle in this absolute dumpster fire of a week. This is a turd of a deal, which has now been taken away and polished, and is now a polished turd. But it might be the best turd that we’ve got.The House of Commons was a Benny Hill chase on acid, running through a Salvador Dali painting in a spaceship on its way to infinity.A vague, and vain attempt to make sense of the great mad nights in British political history.Sketch here.https://t.co/4zCw505yNv pic.twitter.com/ZENHV8wTnz 6.48am GMT More great questions pouring in, thanks so much everyone for getting in touch. One question from a reader is very easy to answer, he asks when the vote will be held tonight and whether the country is in for “another dose of indigestion at 7pm”.Ken, you’ll be relieved to hear that tonight’s vote will be held at 5pm, so you’ve only got 10 more hours of indigestion and anxiety to wait through.Today's business in the House of Commons. Vote on extending Article 50 to be held at 5pm. pic.twitter.com/lswv6POg6Q 6.41am GMT My colleague, Jennifer Rankin, has this excellent Q&A that explains how an extension to article 50 would work. There’s much more to it, you can read the full thing here, but here are some highlights: Related: Brexit: how would an extension to article 50 work? 6.29am GMT Some very touching responses have come in overnight from MPs (and members of the public) wishing well to Andrew Gwynne, Labour MP for Denton and Reddish, who tweeted that he would not be able to attend last night’s vote because his seven-week-old grandson was being transferred to ICU.Other MPs, including Jess Phillips, Stella Creasy, Hilary Benn, Liz Kendall, Anna Turley, Albert Owen, Lisa Nandy, Caroline Flint, and many more, tweeted their support for Gwynne, wishing his family well and saying they understood and supported his decision to be with his family rather than to be at parliament.Before it all hits the fan on social media I want to explain that I won’t be in Parliament tonight to vote. I’m heading to Liverpool as my 7-week old grandson has been transferred from A&E in Manchester to ICU at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital. Please keep him in your thoughts x 6.16am GMT A questions has come in from a reader – thanks so much and do get in touch if you have a thought or question for the blog, I can’t promise I’ll know the answer, but I promise to read your comments! – asking the following:Can you explain the likelihood of the EU agreeing an extension in the short (June) or longer term? The former seems palatable to the EU the latter does not. Therefore if we are in a position where we have no deal agreed and the EU reject a longer extension. What then?They have to tell us what it is they want for their future relationship.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. 6.04am GMT “Humiliation” and “meltdown” are two words that are repeated across many of the front pages after another bruising day for Theresa May, in which key cabinet members defied the party whip and the prime minister suffered further defeats.The Times: Brexit meltdown #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/4YkRFLao1Li: Meltdown #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/RlrU4MqyjFDaily Mail: Chaos reigns #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/jwJ63dK0LcThe Daily Telegraph: Brexit delayed until further notice after gang of four rebels #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/r57T5xosb4The Guardian: May’s final warning to Tory rebels: back me or lose Brexit #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/e1pQkfuxGtThe Scotsman: MPs reject no-deal Brexit under any circumstances #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/NHNYD1kUCBMetro: It’s a total no-no #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/N3gYH2Y2m5Financial Times: May issues ultimatum after MPs seize control with vote to ditch no-deal Brexit #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/dzHajhjgSXDaily Express: Don’t let EU bullies win the day #tomorrowspaperstoday pic.twitter.com/yfSEz7ouK3 Related: 'Chaos reigns': what the papers say about the no-deal Brexit vote 5.49am GMT Good morning and welcome to Politics live. This is Kate Lyons kicking things off as politicians return to the Commons for yet another day of voting on yet more Brexit motions.Last night, we saw dramatic scenes in the House. Theresa May issued her MPs with an ultimatum; back her deal, or face a long delay to Brexit. But her authority within her party is vanishing. Last night’s events were a total and humiliating shambles for the Conservative parliamentary party and the prime minister, as May was openly defied by ministers who abstained rather than follow the party whip. The result of last night’s votes, however, means the threat of a no-deal Brexit on 29 March has almost certainly been removed. Continue reading...

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The Guardian

Google faces Irish inquiry over possible breach of privacy laws

The Guardian | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

Technology firm’s Ad Exchange processing of users’ personal data being investigatedThe Irish data protection commission has opened an investigation into Google over suspected infringements of European Union privacy rules.The statutory inquiry will probe whether Google’s online Ad Exchange violated general data protection regulations (GDPR) covering the

Politico.eu

Timmermans woos Poland’s rising star

Politico.eu | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

The Socialists hope that a new Polish party could edge them closer to victory in the EU election.

The Guardian

May refuses to quit as cabinet in revolt and Tory calls for her immediate resignation escalate – live news

The Guardian | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

Tory ministers and backbenchers conspicuously absent as Theresa May makes statement about her proposed Brexit billTheresa May’s Brexit statement - Summary 6.46pm BST After the 1922 Committee meeting the Tory Brexiter Steve Baker said:The prime minister will be campaigning for the European elections and on Friday she will meet Sir Graham. Obviously they will

BBC News

Brexit: Calls grow for Theresa May to resign in bill backlash

BBC News | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

Several cabinet ministers tell the BBC the PM cannot stay on as the backlash to her Brexit plan grows.

BBC News

Google's personalised ad tech is probed in Ireland

BBC News | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

The Irish Data Protection Commission will look into whether Google's Ad Exchange system is GDPR-compliant.

BBC News

Russian city of Yekaterinburg rejects plan to build church in park

BBC News | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

Residents of a city in the Urals vote against a proposal to build a cathedral in a beloved park.

The Guardian

Tactical voting in European elections can have unintended consequences | Letters

The Guardian | World media » Europe aktuálně » 22. květen, 2019

Bob Gledhill on how voting strategies in PR polls can backfire, Alan Beale on the lack of options for left-leaning pro-Brexit voters, and Les Summers on overcoming tribal loyaltiesIn a proportional representation election, it can be counterproductive to become embroiled in debates on tactical voting (Letters, 21 May). However, my mind goes back to the