Lancashire MPs vote for Brexit bill

Making his statement on the White Paper in the House of Commons, Brexit Secretary David Davis said there would be a transitional phase before the official split from the EU.

In January, in a landmark speech at Lancaster House in London, Prime Minister Theresa May said that Britain would pull out of the single market when it leaves the EU.

The government had sought to exclude parliament, insisting it had the power to trigger Article 50 on its own, but Britain's Supreme Court last week ruled it must consult lawmakers.

By law there are only general elections every five years unless the prime minister asks MPs to vote in favour of calling an early election.

Despite voting to remain in the European Union last June, Angela Watkinson, MP for Hornchurch and Upminster, sided with constituents on Wednesday stating the importance of "enacting the referendum outcome".

The Times newspaper said this could mean that Britain - the first country to vote to leave the European Union - would trigger Article 50 at an European Union summit on March 9-10, although Downing Street dismissed this.

That the statement and the accompanying White Paper might be an exercise in placating MPs rather than offering further detail was underlined by questions from Tory MPs about the fate of European Union citizens living in Britain.




Lawmakers voted by 498 to 114 in favour of allowing the Bill to progress to the next, more detailed legislative stage.

"This bill simply seeks to deliver the outcome of the referendum - a decision the people of the United Kingdom have already made".

The government is looking likely to win with most of the Conservative and Labour MPs set to back the bill.

"We are seeking to protect workers' rights, secure tariff-free access to the Single Market, and ensure that the House of Commons has a say on any proposed deal".

The White Paper itself merely says "implementing any new immigration arrangements for European Union nationals and the support the receive will be complex and Parliament will have an important role in considering these matters further".

Prime Minister Theresa May plans to initiate Article 50's two-year process by the end of March.

The Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesman claimed the Government had "spurned" the offer, as Mrs May preferred to "placate parts of the Conservative Party" rather than act in the UK's long-term interests.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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