MPs vote to seek delay to Brexit as deadline nears
MPs voted to seek a delay to Brexit as the clock ticked down towards when the UK was due to leave the European Union.
The government backed a motion to seek a one-off extension to Article 50 until June 30, with any extension beyond that date 'probably requiring’ the UK to hold EU parliamentary elections in May 2019.
It was approved by 412 votes to 202 – a majority of 210.
On another dramatic and memorable night in the House of Commons, the government also survived an amendment which sought to allow the House of Commons to decide what kind of Brexit deal should be negotiated by 314 votes to 312 – a majority of just two.
It also turned down an amendment put forward by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to seek an extension to provide parliamentary time to find a majority for a different approach.
Only a refusal by the leaders of the 27 remaining EU states to grant the UK an extension at a Brussels summit next week could now preserve the date of March 29 as Brexit Day.
Prime Minister Theresa May has made clear that she will press her agreement to a third ‘meaningful vote’ to MPs in the House of Commons by Wednesday, March 20 after it was rejected by 230 votes in January and 149 earlier this week.