Dutch PM rules out Brexit rejig if May loses

Leading Brexiter Liam Fox urges support for May’s deal | Financial Times

Leading Brexiter Liam Fox urges support for May’s deal | Financial Times

Nicola Sturgeon has called on Theresa May to change course in order to avoid an "utterly disastrous" no-deal Brexit if the Prime Minister's plans are rejected by MPs in a crunch vote on December 11.

The motion voted on stated: "That this House finds ministers in contempt for their failure to comply with the requirements of the motion for return passed on 13 November 2018, to publish the final and full legal advice provided by the attorney general to the cabinet concerning the European Union withdrawal agreement and the framework for the future relationship, and orders its immediate publication".

May faces an uphill struggle to secure parliament's approval in a vote on December 11, when many Brexit supporters and opponents alike say they will reject her vision for leaving the EU, Britain's biggest shift in foreign policy in over 40 years.

Worryingly for ministers, Labour says it has the support of the DUP - who prop up the Government in the Commons - as well as the SNP and the Liberal Democrats, while many Tory MPs are also demanding to see the advice.

May predicted Monday that despite the blowback "I will still have a job in two weeks' time".

She has previously warned that rejecting the deal could see Britain leave the European Union with no agreement at all - something economists warn risks a major recession.

He said: "It is an uncomfortable position for both sides and the reality ... is that there is not a withdrawal agreement without a backstop".

May's opponents argue that Britain can renegotiate the deal for better terms.

Theresa May seems to have finally found a way to unite Remainers and Leavers - unfortunately for her it is in opposition to her Brexit deal.

Rutte cited the "red lines" drawn by both sides during negotiations, including the U.K.'s refusal to accept the free movement of people between Britain and the European Union, and the need to keep an open border between the U.K.'s Northern Ireland and European Union member Ireland.

He told The Associated Press on the sidelines of the global climate conference in Katowice, Poland, that "when you take all these red lines into account it's simply impossible to come up with something different than we have now, the deal on the table".

The government has held off from giving this kind of advice earlier, partly because ministers anxious about being accused of fear-mongering.

In a heated parliamentary debate on Monday, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox admitted that the agreement had "unattractive" and "unsatisfactory" elements but said it guaranteed a "peaceful and orderly" Brexit. Such advice is usually kept confidential.

Attorney General Geoffrey Cox insisted the Government has "gone out of its way" to satisfy Parliament's motion calling for the release of the full legal advice on the Brexit deal.

The Labour party have threatened to write to Speaker John Bercow to trigger contempt of parliament proceedings if it is not published. His assessment means Parliament will debate the issue Tuesday, likely delaying the start of the main Brexit debate.

"It can bring a motion of contempt and seek to have that motion passed and seek to impose through the committee, or whichever way it is appropriately done, to impose a sanction".

Earlier Mrs May's chief Brexit adviser told MPs that the Northern Ireland border backstop was a "slightly uncomfortable necessity" for both the United Kingdom and the European Union.

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer asked the speaker what could be done to ensure the legal advice would be published before next Tuesday's crucial Brexit vote.

"This is an unprecedented situation and that's why we've got an unprecedented situation just tomorrow when the attorney general will be making a statement to parliament", Conservative Party Chairman Brandon Lewis told Sky News.

Hardline Conservative Brexiteers say May's compromise deal does not represent enough of a break with Brussels.

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