Brexit: Second round of voting on alternative proposals begins

Ann Santiago
April 2, 2019

Later Monday, MPs (members of Parliament) will vote on a new range of options to try to find out which Brexit outcome has the most support.

With no majority yet in the House of Commons for any of the Brexit options, there was speculation that an election could be called, though such a vote would be unpredictable and it is unclear who would lead the Conservatives into it.

Standard & Poor's said in an update Monday that a disorderly Brexit would "adversely affect income levels and growth prospects, as well as government finances".

Britain's Parliament has spoken - and it has said no, again.

UK Prime Minster Theresa May and her cabinet want to bring her European Union withdrawal agreement back to the Commons for a fourth attempt at winning MPs' backing. It can gamble on a fourth attempt to push May's unloved deal through Parliament, let Britain tumble out of the bloc without a deal, or roll the dice by opting for a snap election to shake up Parliament.

It is time to press the reset button and seek a long extension to our European Union exit.

It's unclear if May would accept any option that might win approval in the House of Commons.

Juergen Maier urged lawmakers to keep Britain in a customs union with the EU, saying that would allow frictionless trade to continue. The government could also pit May's deal against the favored indicative choice.

Second referendum: This would put any deal to a public vote. By offering to quit as prime minister so as to get her deal over the line, she has put the future of the country ahead of her political career - a rare commodity given the political opportunism of some of her rivals.

May has not given up on her deal, which was rejected by Parliament on Friday by a 58-vote margin - its narrowest defeat yet, but still substantial.

The UK now has until April 12 to either agree on a divorce agreement with the EU or file another extension to Article 50, which could potentially see Britain participate in May's European elections.

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker said it was time for the British Parliament to spell out what it wanted on Brexit.

MPS were due to take part on Monday evening in a second round of indicative votes on a potential solution to the Brexit impasse.

Mr Juncker said in a speech on Monday to the Saarland state legislature in Saarbruecken, Germany: "We now know what the British Parliament doesn't want, but we haven't heard what it wants".

He added: "We are operationally well prepared for Brexit. Enough of the long silence".

Legislators voted 292 to 280 against the plan of holding a new referendum, while a cross-party customs union idea was rejected by 276 to 273 votes.

Shares in the company fell nearly 10% in London on the news. Shares in other airlines and travel companies also fell, with British Airways owner IAG down 2 percent and travel group TUI down 2.5 percent. But it was defeated by 27 votes (more than Clarke's customs union).

In 11 days from now, unless something changes this week, the United Kingdom is leaving the European Union without a deal.

The IHS Markit/CIPS UK Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index in at a reading of 55.1 for March, above the 51 level forecast by economists polled by Reuters.

Stockpiling has become increasingly prevalent over the past few months as Britain's exit looms - originally scheduled for March 29 but since delayed at least to April 12.

With such high stakes in place, there are now deep concerns among Brexiteer lawmakers that their prize of leaving the European Union might be slipping away from them.

The votes were not legally binding, so the government would not have been forced to adopt the proposals.

Smith says May called the election to strengthen her hand in delivering Brexit, but was weakened when she lost her majority.

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