May delay: UK PM asks lawmakers for more time on Brexit

Swiss Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin right and British Secretary of State for International Trade Liam Fox left react after signing a trade agreement in Bern Switzerland Monday Feb. 11 2019. Parmelin and Fox signed a bilateral trade agreement reg

With Brexit just 45 days away, May was due to update the House of Commons on the state of negotiations, a day earlier than planned to give politicians more time to "digest" the remarks before a series of votes on Thursday.

Some lawmakers want to use Thursday's votes to impose conditions on May's Conservative government in an attempt to rule out a cliff-edge "no deal" Brexit that would see Britain crash out of the European Union without a framework for smooth future relations.

Of course, Labour want power, they don't want to be associated with helping May get her Brexit deal through.

Critics say the policy could leave Britain subject to European Union rules for years or even indefinitely after leaving the bloc.

But the prime minister again ruled out the prospect of the United Kingdom remaining in the EU's customs union, the main demand of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

"It is actually, I think, in the interests of this parliament, and in the interests of taking legislation through, that we see a strong vote from across the whole house", May told parliament.

She will urge MPs to "hold our nerve" to get the changes to the Brexit deal.

But the opposition was having none of this.

The Prime Minister also said she is speaking to leaders of the EU27 today and this week.


The EU last week rebuffed Mrs May's efforts to renegotiate a deal that she secured past year but was later overwhelmingly rejected by MPs.

EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said on Monday the bloc would agree to tweak the political declaration on EU-U.K. ties after Brexit that forms part of the package, to reflect a plan for a closer future relationship that could remove the need for the backstop. The free flow of people and goods across the frontier has been an important measure upholding Northern Ireland's peace deal.

Cooper said her bill would require May and parliament to resolve by the middle of March whether Britain is leaving the European Union with a deal, leaving without a deal or seeking an extension to the deadline. But any such move would cost Mrs May the support of a big chunk of her Conservative Party.

The political impasse leaves Britain lurching toward a chaotic no-deal departure that could be costly for businesses and ordinary people in both the United Kingdom and the EU.

Mr Corbyn said Mrs May's delays were fuelling business uncertainty and sapping confidence in the government's ability to deliver Brexit.

May also hinted that a provision in the UK's Constitutional Reform and Governance Act, which dictates that worldwide treaties must sit for 21 days of parliamentary sittings before they can be ratified, would be waived to give her government more time to broker an acceptable deal with the EU. "When we achieve the progress we need, we will bring forward another meaningful vote".

"It is a negotiation". "She is playing for time, and playing with people's jobs, our economic security and the future of our industries".

The risks to this outlook included: the possibility of banks becoming more reckless in their lending, triggering another financial crisis; the possibility of China slowing more sharply than expected, weighing down global growth; and the risk of imbalances in global trade, and in income or wealth distribution, spurring greater protectionism and "de-globalisation".

Figures released this week showed the British economy barely expanding at the end of previous year, as business investment, manufacturing output and construction all declined.

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