Brexit DEADLOCK: Why are more indicative votes happening AGAIN? What are the options?

MPs will once attempt to seize control of the Commons for a second time on Monday as the indicative votes process returns. All eight of the alternatives to Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal failed to pass last Wednesday. These included calls for a permanent customs union with the EU, which was rejected by 272 to 264 votes. Following the results, Mrs May tried to put her Brexit deal through the Commons a third time but that was also rejected again by MPs.

Why are more indicative votes happening AGAIN? What are the options?

A couple of the motions did come close to being passed last week so there is hope that Parliament can approve one of the indicative votes a second time around.

Speaker John Bercow will have responsibility for selecting which motions can be put to the House on Monday before the votes are held in the evening.

The  options are:

1) The UK to have a unilateral right of exit from the Northern Ireland backstop

The UK leaves the EU on May 22 with an amended Brexit deal enabling it to unilaterally leave the Northern Ireland backstop without the EU’s permission – Tory backbenchers led by MP John Baron.

2) No-deal Brexit on April 12 if no consensus reached in Parliament

Britain to exit the EU with a no-deal Brexit on April 12 if the Commons does not reach consensus on a Withdrawal Agreement – Tory MP John Baron

3) Customs union

Calls for any Brexit deal to include a permanent customs union with the EU – Tory MP Ken Clarke

This was defeated by the smallest margin in the first round, falling just eight votes short.

4) Common market 2.0

The UK proposes joining the European Free Trade Association and European Economic Area, staying in a temporary customs arrangement.

This would also enable the UK to have a say on future EU trade deals until an agreement of a wider trade deal can be negotiated on trading goods – Conservatives Nick Boles, Robert Halfon and Dame Caroline Spelman, plus Labour’s Stephen Kinnock, Lucy Powell plus the SNP’s Stewart Hosie.

5) Confirmatory public vote

The public must approve any Brexit deal passed by Parliament before it is made law – former Labour minister Dame Margaret Beckett.

Last time this option polled the highest number of votes, although it was defeated by 295 votes to 268.

6) Public vote to prevent no deal

A referendum will be held if necessary to prevent the UK from leaving the EU without a deal – Labour MP Graham Jones and Tory former minister Dominic Grieve

7) Parliamentary supremacy

An extension to Brexit is sought and if this is not possible then Parliament will choose between a no deal option or revoking Article 50 – SNP MP Joanna Cherry, Dominic Grieve and MPs from other parties

An inquiry would follow to assess the future relationship likely to be acceptable to Brussels and have majority support in the UK.

8) Efta and EEA

The UK rejoins the European Free Trade Association (Efta) at the “earliest opportunity”.

The UK would remain in the EU for a short extension to enable accession to the Efta and negotiate with the EU additional protocols relating to the Northern Ireland border and agri-food trade – former Conservative MP George Eustice, who quit as agriculture minister to fight for Brexit


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