It’s been a week of speculation, speculation and a little more speculation.
Beneath the rumours of no deals, general elections and votes of no confidence, some big votes happened.
“It kicked off on what was dubbed Super Saturday, but dulled into a-little-confusing-but-slightly-bad-for-the-government-Saturday.”
It kicked off on what was dubbed Super Saturday, but dulled into a-little-confusing-but-slightly-bad-for-the-government-Saturday.
Oliver Letwin, an MP who had continually frustrated the Brexit process with rain checking amendments, placed down another one.
MPs sat in the Commons on a Saturday for the first time since 1982, but what was supposed to be a simple vote on the agreement was overturned by Oliver Letwin, who put down an amendment to withhold support from the deal until the other legislation is in place.
This prevents a no deal.
That threw a spanner into the hurried cogs of Boris Johnson’s push to get the withdrawal agreement through Parliament, meaning he was forced to go to Brussels to seek an extension.
Johnson sent a letter to the EU as per the law passed earlier this autumn, but refused to sign it and added an extra letter saying why he didn’t want an extension – he sent three in total.
The EU is yet to respond to that. All eyes are on France to see whether it will support an extension. It’s most likely the UK will be granted a three-month flextension.
That rather ugly word means the UK would stay in until 31st January – or leave earlier if a deal is passed before that.
Later in the week, we had Super Tuesday.
By a narrow margin, the second reading of the bill passed. That was a surprise to some, but rather sceptical eyes have seen it as a way of Labour MPs from Leave areas being able to say they have supported Brexit legislation whilst canvassing at the almost inevitable general election.
“It’s most likely the UK will be granted a three-month flextension.”
For a moment, it was all looking good for Boris Johnson – then the brakes slammed on the process.
MPs voted down the Prime Minister’s timetable for the bill to pass through Parliament, most arguing there wasn’t enough scrutiny for the bill in the short time they had.
The bill is now at committee stage and talks between Corbyn and Johnson for a new timetable have failed – the bill’s procession through Parliament is hanging in limbo. So, too, is Parliament itself, teetering between no deal and another extension.
And for a simple gif explainer, check our dedicated Twitter thread (you can thank us later): https://twitter.com/TruthFal/status/1187358929879293952