Theresa May has won a crucial confidence vote on her Brexit strategy, by promising the Earth to everybody who expressed a concern to her, and double-crossing them later.
According to The Guardian, Mrs May held 11th-hour talks with 14 so-called Tory rebels, in which she gave them “personal assurances that she would agree to the broad thrust of their proposals”.
These would mean that if Parliament rejected the final Brexit deal, ministers would have seven days to set out a fresh approach. If talks with the EU broke down, they would have until November 30 to try to strike a new deal. Mrs May gave in to both of these.
The final proposal – known as ‘Clause C’ – was that, if there was still no deal by February 15 next year, the government would have had to let the House of Commons set its Brexit strategy.
Mrs May told the rebels their concern over this would be addressed when the EU Withdrawal Bill returns to the House of Lords on June 18.
After the MPs – whose votes could have inflicted a damaging defeat on Tweezer’s government – obediently voted in her favour, it transpired that Mrs May intended to address that concern much sooner.
Only hours after the votes had been won, the Department for Exiting the European Union issued the following statement: “We have not, and will not, agree to the House of Commons binding the Government’s hands in the negotiations.”
So the Tory rebels were fooled; they gave up their opportunity to make a significant difference – for nothing.
They included former Attorney General Dominic Grieve, who drafted the proposals; Justine Greening; Ed Vaizey; George Freeman; and Sarah Wollaston.
Now they face well-deserved public ridicule for their gullibility.
And others should be sharing the ridicule with them. For example:
In addition to being a hugely decent man and a very able lawyer Dominic Grieve is revealing himself to be a master tactician. Tory rebels and Labour should pass a clause in the Lords requiring that he be appointed Chief Negotiator. https://t.co/ntiIcibQ6F
— Jo Maugham QC (@JolyonMaugham) June 12, 2018
Oh dear. Judging by the way Mrs May played him, the UK would end up with nothing.
What a surprise, Tory so called rebels chose to vote against their so called principles to spare the Maybot's skin. When you hear them complaining in future best ignore. https://t.co/Evflzl399d
— Alex Braithwaite#BlackLivesMatter#CorbynWasRight🌹 (@labourblackrose) June 12, 2018
The bluster of the Tory rebels is being exposed for all to see right now as MPs vote on the #EUWithdrawalBill – May will cling on for longer, because so few of these rebels have any conviction whatsoever, and the DUP are there to make sure. Typical Tories. All talk & no action.
— Rachael Swindon (@Rachael_Swindon) June 12, 2018
– Rebel MP: An MP who defies the party whip & votes against their party.
– Tory Rebel MP: An MP who tweets that they are a rebel, or gives a teary speech, only to vote with Theresa May when it matters. They live in marginal seats & hope their voters won't notice their hypocrisy.
— Tory Fibs (@ToryFibs) June 12, 2018
In fact, “nothing” was the end result of all the posturing over the Lords’ amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill. No concrete decisions were made at all.
Hear that sound of a can being kicked down the road? That’s the Tories’ Brexit plan. Ignore media spin of any victories for Theresa May. This is weak, weak, weak.
Labour MPs overwhelmingly voted for a meaningful vote on a final deal. Tory MPs overwhelmingly voted against.
— Owen Jones 🌹 (@OwenJones84) June 12, 2018
Mr Jones makes a good point: Certain commentators have spent months berating Jeremy Corbyn for refusing to oppose Brexit altogether (they’re the people with #FBPE on their Twitter handles). Well…
In the votes on June 12, Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party overwhelmingly supported a meaningful vote on a final deal. The Conservatives – and the DUP – voted against it and won.
Criticism of Mr Corbyn is therefore pointless.
Brexit – and the shambolic way in which it is being pursued – is entirely the fault of Theresa May and her party, including useful idiots like Mr Grieve and his so-called rebels.
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