But the Prime Minister had to proceed with caution in the No Confidence debate, in order to arouse no suspicion that she might seek moderate Labour votes.
WATCH: A General Election is “the worst thing we could do”, May argues, seeking the confidence of the House
“It would deepen division, when we need unity. It would bring chaos when we need certainty. And it would bring delay when we need to move forward.”
Corbyn is intensely vague on the topic – and is doing his very best to remain so.
Calling Conservatives: New public appointments announced. Independent Commissioner for Aid Impact – and more
Further details enclosed.
The biggest defeat in modern times and the largest Tory rebellion won’t stop her trying to resurrect her deal.
Plus: We must be the Party for social housing as well as home ownership. And: why don’t we trumpet our history of social reform?
The names of all 118 Conservatives who voted against the proposal, and the three Opposition MPs who voted for it.
It will take place tomorrow. The DUP say that they will vote with the Conservatives.
She suggests further negotiations with the EU, will bring plans to the Commons next week – and says she is committed to deliver on the referendum result.
The backbench rebellion was also the biggest against a Conservative Government in modern times.
Jeopardising local beauty and conservation for the sake of housebuilding is a real problem for councillors. We have to defend our communities.
WATCH: “This is an historic decision that will set the future of our country for generations”, May tells MPs
“Parliament gave the people the choice”, the Prime Minister reminds the House ahead of the vote on her proposed deal.
“I was keen to see an agreement delivered that I could support…[but] the deal on the table potentially gives away our sovereignty and £39 billion.”
Plus a further 29 probable or possible opponents. It’s decision day: when it ends, we will know who did what.
WATCH: Cox – “What are you playing at? What are you doing? You are not children in the playground. You are legislators.”
The Attorney General warns MPs that they will play with people’s lives if the reject Mays’ deal.
Andrew Gimson’s Commons sketch: For Cox to speak with such force suggested how desperate May’s predicament has become.
He suggested that it would be absurd to reject the Government’s motion merely because of the Northern Ireland backstop.
In the West Midlands, investment decisions have been deferred. We need to be able to push ahead with new trade arrangements around the globe.
Courtesy of Philip Cowley, here are some markers for this evening’s votes, when they come.
Strangely but truly, the best way of helping the Prime Minister is to send her back to Brussels to win concessions on the backstop.
The Moggcast. “Most of the poison is in the backstop.” Were it removed, Rees-Mogg might support May’s plan.
But though such a change might win his support, would it persuade his colleagues? Plus: he believes Bercow made “an honest error” last week.
Opposing it in the hope of something better risks ending up with the worst possible outcome: no Brexit at all.
We must drive this project forward. It is a vital piece of infrastructure which could allow a million new homes to be built. But we need to sort out the route.
May’s Brexit plan suffers historic defeat
‘The prime minister offered cross-party talks after MPs rejected her deal by a majority of 230, with more than a third of Conservatives rebelling. With only 72 days to go before Britain leaves, however, Labour MPs demanded that she extend Article 50 to give time for a consensus to be found. Jeremy Corbyn warned Mrs May that she had reached the “end of the line” as he tabled a motion of no confidence in her government that will be voted on today. Allies suggested that Labour could repeatedly test MPs’ confidence in Mrs May’s government in the weeks ahead as it pressed for a general election to end the Brexit chaos. In all, 202 MPs voted in favour of Mrs May’s deal and 432 against. The previous biggest meaningful defeat of a prime minister was in 1924, when Ramsay MacDonald’s short-lived minority Labour government lost by 166 votes.’ – The Times
- It is the biggest ever Commons defeat on a meaningful vote – Daily Telegraph
- She offers MPs talks, but also says she will not bend – The Times
- The Speaker obstructed amendments that might have been helpful – The Sun
- Tusk calls for Brexit to be cancelled – Daily Mail
- The Whips made a huge miscalculation – The Times
- The pound rallies – The Times
- Round-up of EU press reaction – Daily Telegraph
- She will need opposition support – The Times Leader
- The Prime Minister must think hard about whether she can lead the nation forward – Daily Telegraph Leader
- So what now? – The Guardian Leader
- Batten down the hatches – it’s time for No Deal – The Sun Says
- It’s all the Brexiteers’ fault – Daniel Finkelstein, The Times
- Zombie Prime Minister, zombie Cabinet, zombie opposition – Matthew Parris, The Times
- Sorry, Theresa, Labour cannot save you now – Tom Harris, Daily Telegraph
- I feel sorry for her – Lucy Denyer, Daily Telegraph
- For Britain’s sake, please go now – Joseph Harker, The Guardian
- This is a re-run of Callaghan’s final days – Simon Walters, Daily Mail
- Parliament is honour-bound to fulfil its word – Richard Ekins, Daily Telegraph
- Britain deserves better than these preening opponents of democracy – Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Mail
- ToryDiary: May’s statement about the Government’s plans now. What she said and what she meant.
- MPs ETC: May’s Deal suffers the biggest Government defeat in modern Commons history
- MPs ETC: The full list of Conservative and Labour rebels in the vote on May’s Brexit deal
- WATCH: “This is an historic decision that will set the future of our country for generations”, May tells MPs
- WATCH: Cox – “What are you playing at? What are you doing? You are not children in the playground. You are legislators.”
- Andrew Gimson’s Commons sketch: For Cox to speak with such force suggested how desperate May’s predicament has become.
Johnson and other Brexiteers urge renegotiation
‘Boris Johnson last night insisted the Brexit deal can be renegotiated without delaying Britain’s departure from the bloc. The former foreign secretary said he did not ‘rejoice’ in the massive defeat suffered by Theresa May, but demanded that she ditches the Irish border backstop and takes a ‘fresh approach’. He dismissed the idea that would mean extending the Article 50 process, which has just 10 weeks left to run, saying most of the other terms were ‘fine’…Mr Johnson told Sky News that the margin of defeat was ‘bigger than I expected’. ‘It’s no particular cause for rejoicing for me, after all I’ve been trying for so long to get the government back in the place the PM was in her Lancaster House speech last year,’ he said. ‘We were really talking about taking advantage of free trade deals and taking control of our laws. All that got lost as we moved into this quicksand of the backstop, locked into the customs union and single market. What she has now is a massive mandate. With 432 votes against her deal, she takes it back to Brussels and says “we can’t do this deal as it is, we need a fresh approach.”’ – Daily Mail
- Ministers are split – The Guardian
- Raab and Davis tell May to stay in office – The Times
- The ERG want drastic changes, not least to the backstop – The Times
- The Irish Government says the border will stay open in every scenario – The Sun
- Barnier insists this is the best deal possible – FT
- The vote was a challenge for the EU’s Brexit approach, too – FT
- Bercow hints he will aid Remainers in obstructing the process – Daily Mail
- Germany avoids recession by one day – Daily Mail
- The Euro turns 20 – FT
- This defeat is the price of taking Brexiteers for granted – Asa Bennett, Daily Telegraph
- How to maximise our strength and get a better deal – David Davis, Daily Telegraph
- Why have we failed to use our military clout in the negotiations? – Con Coughlin, Daily Telegraph
- No Deal brings many positives – Bill Cash, Daily Telegraph
- Britain is lost and adrift – Jonathan Freedland, The Guardian
>Today: Robert Halfon’s column: Now is the time for Common Market 2.0, and an EFTA-type plan for Brexit
Hammond promises business No Deal will be blocked, and flirts with delaying Article 50
‘Philip Hammond sought to reassure business leaders on Tuesday night that a no-deal Brexit could be blocked, while also raising for the first time the possibility of a delay to Article 50. Speaking on a conference call alongside business secretary Greg Clark and Brexit secretary Stephen Barclay, the chancellor said the government would now seek to build a consensus in parliament. “We have to reach out to MPs in the Commons first,” he said. “There is a large majority in the Commons that is opposed to no-deal.” Mr Hammond said the government would not put up any “obstacles” in the way of Nick Boles, a former minister, who has proposed that the Commons liaison committee — made up of the chairs of the other select committees — could oversee attempts to find a way through the political morass.’ – FT
- He and Clark said there would be no change to the Withdrawal Agreement – Daily Telegraph
- New Boles ‘coup’ could set Brexit back until December – The Sun
- Remainers shouldn’t celebrate too much – we’re on course for No Deal – Tim Stanley, Daily Telegraph
- Their plot to steal Brexit from the people is doomed – Stewart Jackson, Daily Telegraph
- EU states escalate No Deal preparations – The Guardian
DUP and Brexiteers pledge to support the Government in Corbyn’s no confidence vote
‘Moments after the result was announced Jeremy Corbyn announced he would table a no-confidence motion, which MPs will vote on tonight, in a bid to force a general election. But the PM’s Northern Irish allies, former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, and backbench ringleader Jacob Rees-Mogg have all pledged to support her, meaning she is likely to survive. The DUP’s Sammy Wilson said the party wanted to ‘get the government back on track’ and would back Mrs May, while Mr Rees-Mogg said last night: ‘I will be supporting the Prime Minister’. Mr Johnson said he ‘certainly shall’ vote for the PM in Wednesday night’s vote, saying he did not want Mr Corbyn in office instead. Today former Ukip leader Nigel Farage called on Tory MPs who ‘believe in Brexit’ to be brave and resist the Article 50 leaving date of March 29 being extended – and urged them to dump Mrs May as PM and replace her with a Brexiteer calling it a Neville Chamberlain moment.’ – Daily Mail
- She might survive it, but not because she is a good Prime Minister – Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
- There’s no questioning her tenacity – Peter Oborne, Daily Mail
- It takes skill to unite so many people against you – Allison Pearson, Daily Telegraph
- May is incapable of admitting error, never mind defeat – Janet Daley, Daily Telegraph
- Her bungling could see the Tories split – Liam Halligan, Daily Telegraph
- Corbyn’s cynicism could yet backfire – Stephen Glover, Daily Mail
- The vote could well expose Labour’s divisions, too – FT
- WATCH: The Prime Minister challenges Labour to call a no confidence vote
- WATCH: Corbyn – “I have now tabled a motion of no confidence in this Government”
Corbyn continues to infuriate those who want a second referendum
‘Jeremy Corbyn has offered no encouragement to supporters of a second EU referendum after he called for a vote of no confidence in Theresa May’s government and an immediate general election. The Labour leader did not refer to a second referendum in his two Brexit speeches on Tuesday evening, and risked antagonising the party’s pro-remain wing, some of whom want him to back another poll by the end of the week. In his first, longer speech at the end of the full Brexit debate, Corbyn said: “Labour believes that a general election would be the best outcome for the country if this deal is rejected tonight.” He argued that despite differences of opinion over Brexit, membership of the European Union was not the most important issue facing the country. “We need to keep in mind that the vast majority of people in our country don’t think of themselves as remainers or leavers,” he said.’ – The Guardian
- But another referendum is surely what they must now support – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
- The return of communism is a dire threat – Madeline Grant, The Times
- Beware a hard left land grab – Stephen Pollard, Daily Express
- Redbridge mayor-elect withdraws after wife’s criminal past comes to light – The Guardian
Welfare change could see pensioners with younger partners lose thousands
‘Thousands of poorer UK pensioners who have partners of working age could lose up to £7,000 a year in top-ups as a result of imminent rule changes that will require them to claim universal credit as a couple. Changes slipped out on Monday night by the Department for Work and Pensions mean that from 15 May, new pensioners whose partners are younger than the state retirement age of 65 can no longer claim a means-tested top-up called pension credit. Instead they will be forced to claim the much less generous universal credit alongside their younger partners. The couple rate of universal credit is £114.81 a week compared with £255.25 for a couple receiving pension credit. This amounts to a potential loss of £7,320 a year.’ – The Guardian
- Charity says Universal Credit traps people in debt – The Sun
- Disability benefit changes cost the taxpayer money – FT
- Machine aids transplants by keeping livers alive – The Times
Ofsted to start scoring schools on pupils’ behaviour
‘Schools with badly behaved pupils will be marked down by inspectors in an overhaul of Ofsted ratings. Low-level disruption including pupils swinging on chairs, whispering, passing notes or checking phones while teachers are talking will be assessed from September. Ofsted said that this was the issue parents cared most about. Inspectors will assess behaviour as a new category by observing different classes and at break and lunch, noting pupils’ punctuality, manners and “pride in themselves and the school”. The move is part of sweeping changes to the inspection framework in which exam results will be downgraded and the process by which results are achieved will be under closer scrutiny. Ofsted said that there was currently an “over-reliance on performance data” which incentivised schools to game the system.’ – The Times
- Tuition fee cut threatens a dozen universities – The Times
- US invention allows schools to monitor pupils’ brains – Daily Mail
SNP splits threaten their chance of a second independence referendum
‘The Scottish parliament is to launch an inquiry into the handling of sexual misconduct allegations against Alex Salmond, opening a new front in a controversy that has shattered the once-close alliance between the former first minister and his successor Nicola Sturgeon. Tensions within the governing Scottish National party have already bubbled over, with Ms Sturgeon’s spokesman this week accusing people close to Mr Salmond of trying to smear her following a botched government investigation into the claims. The SNP appears more divided than at any time since the early 1980s, threatening its effectiveness at a time when Brexit offered the chance of a renewed push for Scottish independence, said polling expert John Curtice. “The SNP are at risk of falling out among themselves just when . . . there might be an opportunity to hold an early independence referendum,” he said.’ – FT
- Competing inquiries dog Holyrood – The Guardian
One in five baby boomers is now a millionaire
‘Decades of soaring house prices, economic growth and final salary pensions mean that 20 per cent of over 65s have a wealth of £1million or more in real terms, up from just 7 per cent in 2006. But while baby boomers are the group to have experienced the greatest rise in their household wealth, younger generations have seen a much more modest increase. Analysis by wealth manager Netwealth shows that the total wealth owned by over 65s nearly doubled – from £2.4trillion to £4.7trillion – in the decade between 2006 and 2016. In comparison, those between 25 and 54 years old saw their wealth increase by just 9 per cent in real terms during the same time.’ – Daily Mail
- Housebuilder scoops £1 billion profit (helped by Help to Buy) – Daily Mail
US Government shutdown is beginning to harm the economy
‘The record-breaking US government shutdown is triggering ripple effects across the US economy and risks denting confidence among companies that have already been fretting about trade disputes and stock market turbulence. Shutdowns have historically had only fleeting economic effects, but Jay Powell, the Federal Reserve chairman, warned last week that a dispute that outlasts past impasses could begin to change the picture for the worse. The deadlock in Washington, which has entered its fourth week, raises particular concerns over looming tussles around the need to lift or suspend the ceiling on US public debt this summer, as well as the fate of public spending caps that will bite late this year.’ – FT
- Trump doubles down on the shutdown – Daily Mail
- He is dangerously inconsistent – The Times Leader
- The President ‘repeatedly’ considered pulling the US out of NATO last year – Daily Mail
News in Brief
May’s Brexit plan suffers historic defeat ‘The prime minister offered cross-party talks after MPs rejected her deal by a majority… Read more »
Brexit 1) May faces heavy defeat in the “meaningful vote” “Theresa May warned Tory rebels last night that they will… Read more »
The Government: May tries to win over Leavers with last-ditch warning that No Brexit is more likely than No Deal… Read more »
Claims of a backbench plot to seize control of Parliament in ‘very British coup’… “Theresa May has been warned that… Read more »
Brexit 1) Grayling warns that failing to leave the EU would boost extremists “Britain will witness a surge in neo-Nazi… Read more »