Brexit in disarray - May under pressure to go for soft Brexit


Monday's votes in Parliament follow an earlier round last week in which none of the eight Brexit options on offer secured a majority. Despite poisonous divisions in the Labour Party over Brexit, allegations of anti-semitism and over the ideology of Jeremy Corbyn, the most far-left leader the party has had since the 1940s, an opinion poll on Saturday put Labour five points ahead of the Conservatives.

Justice Secretary David Gauke said Sunday the government would have to "very carefully consider" the wishes of Parliament, but continued to insist that Prime Minister Theresa May's European Union divorce deal is still the best alternative.

The deputy leader of the Opposition Labour party, Tom Watson, said in an interview last week that a unity government was not an entirely farcical notion.

In his East Antrim constituency on Sunday night, Mr Wilson told BBC News NI: "Should [the prime minister] bring it back a thousand times we will vote against it because the implications for Northern Ireland are far, far too serious".

As MPs prepare again to debate and vote on alternative Brexit strategies, there is speculation that the Commons could be moving towards supporting a softer exit deal including a Customs Union.

The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) of Northern Ireland argues that it would create a border between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

The Banff and Buchan MP said he did not favour a general election - and described any attempt to revoke Article 50 as "a complete betrayal of the British people's trust".

Sterling rose 0.8 percent to as high as $1.3135, also finding support from better-than-expected manufacturing survey data and media reports that the opposition Labour party would support closer ties with the European Union in Monday's series of votes on parliament's favoured Brexit option.

"The parliamentary arithmetic would mean that this would be inevitably a kind of softer type of Brexit", said Smith, who also said ministers had tried to undermine the prime minister.

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EasyJet is "well prepared" for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union, but the air transport market is shrinking on both sides of the English Channel, the carrier's Director General, Johan Lundgren, said, since, in addition to Brexit, economic uncertainty is negatively affecting the sector. "Where the United Kingdom used to be beacon for stability, we are now becoming a laughing stock", he said in open letter to lawmakers published by website Politico. Pro-Brexit lawmakers think it keeps Britain too closely tied to European Union rules.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May on 29 March.

A party spokesman said: "In line with our policy, we're supporting motions to keep options on the table to prevent a damaging Tory deal or no deal, build consensus across the House to break the deadlock and deliver an outcome that can work for the whole country".

And prominent Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg told LBC he was anxious that Mrs May was "more concerned to avoid a no-deal Brexit than anything else" and might "decide to go for a customs union tacked on to her deal".

But Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liz Truss told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "It's not clear to me that going softer is the way to command support".

Mr Drax told the Commons: "I personally feel utterly ashamed of myself for betraying everything I believed in - that this deal was a rotten deal".

Parliament has thrown it out three times, although the latest defeat, by 58 votes, was the narrowest yet.

In a sign of her waning authority, it was written by Brexit minister Chris Heaton-Harris, according to The Times.