Back Brexit law or risk chaos, May’s Conservatives tell MPs

January 17, 2018

The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill is set to complete its first journey through parliament’s lower house some time after 1900 GMT, a milestone on the long road towards cementing the legal foundations of Brexit.

The bill repeals the 1972 law which made Britain a member of the EU and transfers EU laws into British ones. It has become a focal point for the divisive debate about what type of EU divorce Britain should seek, severely testing May’s ability to deliver on her exit strategy without a parliamentary majority.

Nevertheless, despite one embarrassing defeat, several government concessions and criticism from within her own party, May is expected to win a vote that will see the bill passed to parliament’s largely pro-EU upper chamber for more scrutiny.

Speaking ahead of the vote, Conservative Party Chairman Brandon Lewis called on the opposition Labour Party, which has opposed May’s strategy at almost every turn, to back the bill and show it is not trying to overturn the 2016 EU referendum.

“Labour say over and again that they support the referendum result, and can be trusted to act responsibly, but today that will be put to the test. They can either back this bill or vote for chaos,” Lewis said.

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