The vote has no legal force, but it sends an important signal.
Michael Gove pledged earlier that leglslation would be introduced if the Government won its own motion. That would have taken the date of March 29 out of the legislation and presumably put that of a new date in. The logic of the Spelman amendment is that no new date would be put in. It is unclear as we write whether the Government would be prepared to legislate for this.
However, since Spelman’s amendment has won, it will in effect become the Government’s motion.
The question that follows is whether Brexiteering Government Ministers will vote for a harder No Deal motion than was originally on the table. That vote was due to be a free vote. But as we write it is claimed that the Government will whip against it. So the question is how many of anti-No Deal Ministers will now vote against their own Government, and either resign or be fired (or neither).
We will see very shortly. As we write, the Damian Green “Malthouse amendment” is being voted on.