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In a dramatic plot twist, John Bercow has blocked Theresa May from bringing back her Brexit deal for a third meaningful vote unless the government makes “substantial changes”.
He cited an ancient 400-year-old Commons rule that blocks parliament being forced to vote on the same issue repeatedly in a short space of time.
It comes after May’s Brexit deal was rejected twice by MPs, with the government suffering its biggest defeat in 95 years when deal was put before parliament for the first time.
Bercow’s decision is major blow to the PM, who planned to pile pressure on MPs to change their minds with a third vote this week, and possibly a fourth before 29 March Brexit deadline.
This might sound a bit boring but it's massive - minister tells me he's now made this a 'constitutional crisis' - a… https://t.co/8ggOYu9vMn — Laura Kuenssberg (@Laura Kuenssberg)
Meanwhile solicitor general, Robert Buckland says Parliament night have to prorogue - ie pack up and start again in… https://t.co/o7AsV8K62t — Laura Kuenssberg (@Laura Kuenssberg)
BREAKING: Speaker rules out the government bringing back meaningful vote 3 unless the deal has changed. Govt cannot… https://t.co/EMobvi6wPd — Paul Brand (@Paul Brand)
He's only gone and done it.
https://t.co/OiT0cb8GZ8 — Paul Waugh (@Paul Waugh)
The Mother of all Parliaments brought back from the dead by Bercow.
His whole statement refusing to allow motion… https://t.co/eawcORfgf6 — Jessica Simor QC (@Jessica Simor QC)
In theory, not sure Bercow decision matters that much: House can simply vote through a paving motion saying it want… https://t.co/lftrzbeKGh — Stephen Bush (@Stephen Bush)
The Speaker is absolutely right to block May's attempts to batter Parliament into a 3rd meaningful vote on her awfu… https://t.co/WNLz0oBh3F — David Lammy (@David Lammy)
Ha ha ha ha.
Bercow disallows MV3 if it is substantially same as MV2, as the government cannot keep bringing the… https://t.co/UV27neBmaf — davidallengreen (@davidallengreen)
Einstein: Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results.
Theresa May: But th… https://t.co/9YlLujDHa3 — Aditya Chakrabortty (@Aditya Chakrabortty)
Just dump her, babe, advises John Bercow, as he applies for a new job as the nation's agony aunt. — Aditya Chakrabortty (@Aditya Chakrabortty)
Bercow says the Government cannot hold vote after vote on a #Brexit deal already rejected twice by MPs.
It's only… https://t.co/7rt92bfQP8 — Caroline Lucas (@Caroline Lucas)
I'm hearing Bercow says 'meaningful vote 3' can't happen because of a convention dating back to when Christopher Ma… https://t.co/cKO3tkgayK — Aaron Bastani (@Aaron Bastani)
Theresa May's Tories learn the hard way: don't mess with a 400 year old democracy. #Bercow — Paul Mason (@Paul Mason)
We now go live to John Bercow’s statement https://t.co/RULbDvvsOO — Sean Kemp (@Sean Kemp)
To say that Bercow is enjoying this would be an understatement of epic proportions — James Forsyth (@James Forsyth)
Bercow said he had allowed last week’s second vote – which suffered the fourth-worst government defeat in history – because it contained “legal changes the government considered to be binding”.
But he told MPs:
If the government wishes to bring forward a new proposition that is neither the same nor substantially the same as that disposed of by the House on 12 March, this would be entirely in order.
John Bercow leaving work this evening https://t.co/RHjEexIHPG — Declan Cashin (@Declan Cashin)
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