8.30am Brexit news latest – Boris made desperate late night call to vote rebels as BBC blasted for 'bias' bill coverage

BORIS Johnson called on his MPs to back his Internal Market Bill in alate-night phone call, it's been reported.

BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg tweeted: "PM had a call with Tory peers tonight to try to assuage their fears about the bill.

"Bill sailed thro Commons today, but next week with amendments won't be so easy, and Lords are gearing up for a fight – one Cabinet minister admitted there is no chance of it getting past the red benches as it stands."

Meawnhile, BBC Newsnight's Emily Maitlis has come under fire as furious viewers accused her of "supporting the EU"

She was accused of "bias" following a TV debate in which she pointed out some Tories believe the PM's Brexit deal breaks international law.

MPs last passed Boris Johnson's controversial new Brexit Markets bill at its second reading.

Follow our Brexit live blog for all the latest news and updates…

  • LAW BREACH FEARS

    A former Tory Cabinet minister has said it would be “unacceptable” to breach international law with legislation to override the Brexit divorce deal.

    Andrew Mitchell hit out at clauses in the Government's new Internal Market Bill on BBC Radio 4's Today programme this morning.

    He said: “The proposition that we should march through the Lobby as lawmakers and say that we are going to ignore and disavow a law that we have passed, to do with the rule of law, that is completely unacceptable.

    “We all want to help the Government with these negotiations, but to do that flies in the face of all British tradition.”

  • EURO TRAVEL WOES – REPORT

    A leaked report indicates the government may be preparing for a “worst case” scenario for delays to travelling into the European Union.

    The document– which was prepared by the Border and Protocol Delivery Group– warns of 7,000 lorry queues in Kent.

    It also predicts thousands of passengers could face two-hour delays for Eurostar trains.

    A spokesperson for the Cabinet Office said the report reflects a “stretching scenario” whereby the worst case outcome is considered. 

  • BORIS'MADE CALL TO SAVE BILL'

    Boris Johnson called on Tory MPs to back his Internal Market Bill in a late-night phone call, it's been reported.

    BBC Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg tweeted last night: “PM had a call with Tory peers tonight to try to assuage their fears about the bill.

    “Bill sailed thro Commons today, but next week with amendments won't be so easy, and Lords are gearing up for a fight.”

    She thenadded that “one Cabinet minister admitted there is no chance of it getting past the red benches as it stands.”

  • EU CURRENCY THREAT

    The EU has threatened to delay their decision on whether the City of London should continue to deal with euro transactions.

    The decision could create risks for the clearing house trade in euros on the London Stock Exchange. 

    Clearing houses are a mediator between buyers and sellers during trade.

    But UK and EU lawmakers have disputed clearing houses as cities including Paris want to use Brexit as a tool to argue over London’s current influence on the markets.

    The EU want the majority of the clearing for euros to be within the Eurozone and for it to be regulated by its own European Central Bank.

  • BREXIT BOOST

    Boris Johnson's Brexit bill passed in the Commons last night – despite the Tory backlash.

    He was hit by a backlash from senior Tories over his bid to rip up last year’s EU divorce Bill if Brussels tried to exploit Northern Ireland.

    Former Chancellor Sajid Javid opposed the move and ex-PM David Cameron also broke cover to declare he had “misgivings” about the UK breaking a signed treaty.

    But last night Mr Johnson won the first major Commons battle over his plan to breach international law in a “limited and specific way” with a majority of 77.

    Tory MP Sir Roger Gale voted against the Government as  a “matter of principle”.

    He said: “I believe very strongly we should obey international law.”  

    Earlier, the PM defended his “safety net” law.

    It overwrites parts of his Brussels deal that could see the EU use Northern Ireland to exert control over the UK after Brexit.

    He told MPs he “hoped the EU will take this revolver off the table” and added: “We cannot have a situation where the very boundaries of our country could be  dictated by a foreign power or international organisation.”

    Responding for Labour, Ed Miliband raged: “What incompetence. What failure of governance.”

  • FURLOUGH SCHEME REPLACEMENT

    The Labour leader will call on the government to replace the furlough scheme and then outlaw “firing and re-hiring” methods to avoid “mass unemployment”.

    Almost 10 million workers have been furloughed since March but the scheme is set to end on 31 October.

    The government has said it is implementing plans to protect jobs.

    Speaking to the Trades Union Congress' annual conference, Sir Keir will make the case for replacing the furlough scheme.

  • 'WORST CASE'

    A leaked report has warned of queues fo 7,000 lorries in Kent and significant delays to cross into the EU after Brexit.

    A confidential document prepared by the Border and Protocol Delivery Group – seen by T-he Guardianhow the Government has admitted it preparing for the “reasonable worst case scenario”.

    The report also predicts thousands of passengers could have to wait an additional two hours for Eurostar trains.

    But a Cabinet Office spokeswoman said in a statement the Government was using a “stretching scenario” as opposed to a prediction.

    She said: “As a responsible government we continue to make extensive preparations for a wide range of scenarios, including the reasonable worst case.

    “This is not a forecast or prediction of what will happen but rather a stretching scenario. It reflects a responsible government ensuring we are ready for all eventualities.”

    The 46-page report, dated last week, says an essential IT system used by hauliers will not be tested publicly until the end of November, one month before the UK's transition phase with Brussels ends.

  • GOVERNMENT STATEMENT ON SUCCESSFUL SECOND READING

    Welcoming the comfortable 77-majority, a government spokesman said: “It will protect the territorial integrity of the UK and the peace in Northern Ireland, safeguarding trade and jobs across all four corners of the UK following the end of the transition period.

    “It is critical that we pass this Bill before the end of the year.”

  • LABOUR’S AMENDMENT BLOCKED

    And Labour’s amendment to block the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill from receiving a second reading was blocked earlier today.

    The amendment was defeated by 349 votes to 213, majority 136.

  • BILL PASSES SECOND READING

    MPs have passed Boris Johnson’s controversial new Brexit Markets bill at its second reading.

    Politicians from all sides hashed out the bill for around five hours in the Commons this evening, with several Conservatives putting their foot down and saying they wouldn’t vote.

    But despite some backlash, Boris Johnson comfortably saw off the Tory rebellion, winning the crucial Commons vote by 340 to 263 votes.

  • GOVE: ‘IT’S CRUCIAL THE BILL PASSES TONIGHT’

    Michael Gove told MPs as he closed this evening’s debate it’s “crucial” the bill passes tonight.

    He said: “What this bill is not doing is not walking away from negotiations with the EU – those negotiations go on,” adding he is “committed” to the talks.

    He also said all four parts of the UK are strongest when working together.

  • DEBATES TO CLOSE SOON

    Michael Gove is set to close this evening’s debate in around ten minutes.

    It will come after Labour’s closing remarks.

    MPs have thrashed out the controversial bill for around five hours now, as the list of Tory rebels who say they will refuse to vote builds.

  • FORMER CHIEF WHIP REFUSES TO VOTE

    Conservatuve Andrew Mitchell, a former chief whip and international development secretary has joined the growing list of MPs refusing to vote on the Internal Market Bill.

    Sky News reports he told MPs failing to follow the UK’s “rule of law” will cause “incalculable damage to our reputation all around the world”.

    He added he's going to vote for the bill at second reading but not to breach international law.

  • WHAT IS A NO DEAL BREXIT?

    A No Deal departure from the European Union means leaving without formal arrangements for the future relationship.

    Britain's trade, customs and immigration rules were tied up with the single market and a host of EU regulatory bodies.

    The UK ended up leaving the EU on January 31 with a transition period until December 31 2020.

    While we did leave with a deal – in which this transition period was agreed – there is still the possibility of ending up in a no deal scenario still.

    If there is no arrangement for our future relationship by the end of this period then Britain will have left the EU with no deal and will trade on World Trade Organisation rules.

  • NO-DEAL IS 'ONLY AVAILABLE OPTION' SAYS MP

    Tory MP Andrea Jenkyns (Morley and Outwood) said no-deal is the “only available option” for the UK if the EU continued its “resistance” to a free trade agreement.

    She added: “In light of the EU's continued resistance to a mutually beneficial free trade agreement a no-deal would be our only available option and this Bill makes provision for that.”

  • JAVID WON’T BACK BILL

    A growing number of Tory MPs are threatening to refuse to vote for the new law which would override key clauses of the original Brexit deal.

    Former Chancellor Sajid Javid is the latest leading Tory to announce he is “unable to support” the bill.

    Mr Javid tweeted: “It is not clear to me why it is necessary for the UK to break international law.

    “I am regretfully unable to support the UK Internal Market Bill unamended.”

  • PM SAYS EU ‘PUT REVOLVER ON THE TABLE’

    Boris Johnson accused the EU of putting “a revolver on the table” ahead of tonight's vote on his controversial Brexit bill.

    Speaking in the Commons as he opened the debate, the PM claimed Brussels had made an “extraordinary threat” to block food imports between mainland Britain and Northern Ireland.

    It was the “most glaring example” of the EU's bid to “exert leverage against the UK” by using “extreme and unreasonable lengths” Mr Johnson claimed.

    The PM said: “Interlocutors on the other side are holding out the possibility of blockading food and agricultural transports within our own country.

    “Absurd and self-defeating as that action would be even as we debate this matter, the EU still have not taken this revolver off the table.”

  • ‘THE EU HAS NEVER HAD A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD’

    An MP has claimed that the EU has never played fair.

    He referenced the bloc’s alleged failure to comply with World Trade Organisation rules.

    It follows fierce debate on the new Internal Markets Bill tonight, ahead of a vote on the controversial new measures.

    MPs are thrashing it out in the Commons tonight over the new additions, which the Government admitted do break international law.

  • TIME LIMIT INTRODUCED

    A time limit of four minutes has been introduced as several backbenchers speak on the amendments to the Brexit bill.

    Deputy Speaker Eleanor Laing said the limit is in place to ensure everyone can have a say in such an important debate.

  • ‘NO DEAL IS NOT A GAME’

    Ed Milliband has been outspoken throughout the debate so far.

    He blasted Cummings’ actions during lockdown, insisting that the new bill will create an environment where there is one rule for the British public and another for the government.

    He told the PM that the UK is known worldwide for upholding and creating the rule of law, and that breaking international law will seriously undermine this reputaion.

    He added: “No deal is not some game”.

  • DAVID CAMERON TELLS PM 'KEEP BIG PRIZE IN MIND'

    David Cameron this morning joined four other ex-PMs to express “grave concern” over the new Brexit bill.

    He told Sky News: “Passing an act of parliament and then going on to breaking an international treaty obligation is the very, very last thing, you should contemplate.

    “It should be an absolute final resort. I do have misgivings about whats being proposed.”

    But the ex-PM's condemnation of the bill was much more tempered than Tony Blair and Sir John Major who called the law “shameful”.

    Mr Cameron added: “What I should say is the Government has proposed a law which it might pass or it might not pass, it might use or might not use depending on whether a certain set of circumstances do or do not appear.

    “Of course the bigger picture here is we are in a vital negotiation with the European Union to get a deal and I think we have to keep that big prize in mind.”

  • BREXIT 'NEGOTIATING TACTIC' HAS BACKFIRED

    The Government's Brexit “negotiating tactic” has backfired, says Ireland's deputy premier.

    Leo Varadkar called for the British Government to change its mind on its plan to break international law by breaching parts of the Withdrawal Agreement.

    It could rewrite parts of the agreement relating to the provisions around all-Ireland trade.

    Speaking in Co Kildare, Mr Varadkar said: “The most important thing for Irish farmers and exporters is that we secure a free trade agreement so there are no tariffs and no quotas on the trade of goods between Britain and Ireland.

    “I think what they (UK Government) have done – if it was a negotiating tactic – has now backfired.

    “Countries all around the world, the US and other countries, are wondering if this is the kind of place we can do any deal with or any treaty with.”

  • BLOCKADE OF FOOD CONFIRMED

    The EU has confirmed it could bring in a blockade of food goods travelling between Northern Ireland and Great Britain under the current terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, says Downing Street.

    Asked why it had taken “several days” for the possible blockade to be listed as a reason for changes to the Brexit deal, the PM's spokesman told reporters: “While the negotiations were ongoing, we sought to avoid discussing the content of those – but the fact of this particular matter was put into the public domain by the EU in a statement on Thursday evening.”

    He added: “You already have a series of comments on social media from Lord Frost… which clearly urge the EU to think better of this because it obviously doesn't make it easier to negotiate a good free trade agreement and a solid future relationship which we all want.”

  • BORIS JOHNSON ‘ALL OVER THE PLACE’ – KEIR STARMER

    Boris Johnson “is all over the place” and should just “get on with” finalising the Brexit deal, says Labour leader Keir Starmer.

    But, he told LBC today, the Labour Party “will not go along with breaking international law”.

    “My message to Boris Johnson is get on with it and actually focus on what most people are talking about this morning, which is how on earth do we defeat and deal with this pandemic – that’s what’s on people’s minds.

    “They thought this was over, he’s reopening it, I think the nation would say to Boris Johnson get on with this, stop this, you’re wrong,” he added.

    However, after being interviewed, Sir Keir had to go into coronavirus self-isolation after a member of his household developed symptoms.

    He will continue working from home, but will not take part in Commons proceedings today.

  • PM HEADS OFF TO PARLIAMENT FOR CRUCIAL DEBATE

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson was pictured (below) reacting while being driven to the Houses of Parliament in central London this afternoon.

    He was snapped before opening a debate into the Government's proposed Internal Market Bill.

    Mr Johnson is set to face down critics to argue in favour of a new law that his government openly admits will break its EU divorce treaty, as wrangling over Brexit returns to parliament.

    Furious officials in Brussels have demanded the proposed legislation is withdrawn before the end of the month, and Mr Johnson is facing threats of rebellion and resignations.

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