British Parliament Votes in Favour of EU Withdrawal Bill
Agreement to proceed with the European Withdrawal Bill was reached in the British House of Commons this afternoon with a majority of 124 votes.
MPs voted for proceeding with the Bill, 358 in favour, 234 against.
The Bill had its second reading in Parliament this morning as MPs debated whether to back the withdrawal agreement negotiated between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the EU in October.
With Boris Johnson’s Conservative party now holding a majority in the Parliament there was little question over the ability of Government to get the Bill passed.
In addition to ratifying the agreement, the Bill will also legally prohibit Government from extending the implementation period beyond December 31st, 2020. The transition period is to enable the UK to leave the EU but continue to follow many of its rules for a period of time.
It also allows more UK courts to reconsider European Court of Justice rulings that have been retained in UK law after the withdrawal.
Speaking in the House of Commons this morning, Prime Minister Johnson said the Bill ‘paves the way for a new agreement on our future relationship with our European neighbours based on an ambitious free trade agreement.’
He said the Bill ‘ensures we depart on 31 January 2020. At that point Brexit will be done. It will be over.’
In relation to potential trade agreements he said there would be ‘no alignment on EU rules, but instead control of our own laws.’
He asked his House of Commons colleagues to support the Bill, putting the labels of ‘Leave’ and ‘Remain’ behind them.
‘Now is the time to act together as one reinvigorated nation, one United Kingdom, filled with renewed confidence in our national destiny and determined at last to take advantage of the opportunities that now lie before us.’
Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn however, remained steadfast in his opposition to the Bill saying, his party still believed it was ‘a terrible deal.’
The Bill will now move forward for its final stages of debate in the House of Commons and the House of Lords before becoming law. This will allow the UK to leave the EU under the Government deadline of January 31st 2020.
(Image by fotoblend via pixabay.com)