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Brexit: MPs vote against protecting rights of EU nationals living in UK

Brexit Bill: UK lawmakers voted against protecting rights of EU nationals living in UK. By a majority of 48, MPs have refused to protect unilaterally the rights of EU nationals living in the UK. The vote on Monday evening allows Theresa May to negotiate over the rights of EU nationals in the UK, in exchange for the rights of British citizens in the EU.

The House of Lords had amended the government’s Brexit bill to demand that EU and EEA citizens and their family members who are legally resident in the EU “continue to be treated in the same way”, despite the Brexit vote. That was rejected by 335 votes to 287.

The debate featured an impassioned plea by former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, who cited his Dutch mother and Spanish wife as examples as those affected by the uncertainty.

Labour peers have said they will not vote to reinsert the provisions, making a prolonged period of what is known as “ping-pong” between the elected chamber and its unelected counterpart much less likely.

Only two Tory MPs – Tania Mathias and Alex Chalk – defied the government over the issue of EU nationals as the government won the first vote comfortably. There were no rebels in the second vote although about ten Tories are believed to have abstained.

After reversing the Lords changes, the bill will pass back to peers to decide whether they want to go against the government’s plans again.

The bill travels back and forth between the two chambers until both sides agree – Parliament could sit through the night to try to reach an agreement, and time has also been set aside on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Both Houses of Parliament have to agree the text of the bill before it can be sent for Royal Assent and become law.

British actor David Schneider commented on the vote:

Prime Minister Theresa May could then theoretically trigger Article 50, which formally starts the Brexit process, as early as Tuesday

Downing Street has ruled out triggering Article 50, the EU’s formal exit clause, on Tuesday, saying that notification will not come until the last week of March.

Meanwhile, Scotland;s leader Nicola Sturgeon seeks a new independence referendum.

Sturgeon has said she will seek authority for a new independence referendum because Britain is dragging Scotland out of the European Union against its will.

The First Minister said she would move quickly to give Scottish voters a chance to make Scotland an independent country.

Sturgeon said the referendum should be held between autumn 2018 and the spring of 2019.

She said by then, details of Britain’s post-Brexit deal with the EU would be clear and Scottish voters would be able to make “an informed choice”.

The British Government must agree before a legally binding referendum can be held. (BBC, FT, ABC)

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13 comments

  1. Counting on a ” Luvvie” who nobody is interested in and a politician who no one believes or listens to, to bolster your story is a bit weak. The Scots want independence to then be ruled by Brussels? If the Scots want independence, just extend the referendum to all parts of the UK, lol.

  2. An agreement in principle on this matter could have been made at the December EU Council, but Merkel wouldn’t have it. Blame her.

    • Andy. Mrs Merkel is not the EU negotiator and does not speak for all the EU27 any more than Mrs May does. However, all British citizens living and working in Germany are offered German citizenship to protect them.

      • Precisely correct. The Germans have shown good behaviour in the entire matter of the Brexit shambles, while the racist Tory pigs have humiliated my country. Their heady mix of arrogance and stupidity recalls the Old Etonian style of upper class rule — offset by a lower middle class banker-fascist they put in power as PM.

    • Nope. That is a lie. Merkel refused to discuss anything at all, on the grounds that the UK had not invoked Art. 50.

  3. Look, there is real life and then there is politics. Neither the UK nor the EU want to reveal a single card in their hand, it’s much more important at this stage to show no weakness than it is to behave like sensible caring human beings. That said, I have no doubt that one of the very first things that will be agreed when the negotiations start is that EU citizens established in the UK can remain and work and UK citizens established in other EU countries can stay and work. To do otherwise is not just unfair it’s inhuman. Not only that but neither the EU nor the UK want to see somewhere around 4 million people moving back to their countries of birth…..

    • Absolutely spot-on. The title of the post completely misses the point either deliberately to promote “fake news” or as an accident through complete ignorance.

      The UK government has consistently stated that it is prepared to allow EU citizens currently resident to remain and work in the UK post-Brexit on the condition that the EU offers the same consideration to British Citizens living and working in the EU. That will be agreed once the negotiations start.

      What we’re seeing here is ugly politics at work with anti-Brexit members within the unelected House of Lords doing their utmost to try and derail the Article 50 process by setting amendments to a Legislative Bill potentially resulting in the UK Government entering into negotiations with the EU with a handicap. Fortunately, many in Parliament saw through it and voted it down. In whichever camp you’re in, anyone with an ounce of intelligence and a respect for democracy and the democratic process can see the Lords’ amendments for what they were; an attempt to usurp the will of the people.

      As for Sturgeon, she’s an annoyance at worst, fiddling with referenda whilst Scotland burns through government incompetence.

      • keeptalkinggreece

        before cheering ‘fake news’, learn to read on the internet

        • I’m not cheering anything and I can read the internet. The UK MPs did not vote against protecting rights of EU nationals living in UK, as stated in your headline. The headline is factually incorrect. So it’s either a mistake based on a misunderstanding of what went on or it’s deliberately contrived to push a narrative. If it’s the first then fine, a mistake was made, if it’s the second then it’s “fake”.

          • keeptalkinggreece

            how odd. Financial Times had this title, see the link

          • The headline is correct, you are wrong. The Commons rejected the amendment from the Lords which would guarantee the right to remain in the UK for all currently present EU ciitizens. If you cannot grasp that fact, you should not be commenting here. The Scumbag Tories are not in the least bit interested in their non-voting EU residents, and also couldn’t give a f**k about UK citizens resident in EU countries.

    • Nope. It is not acceptable to put people’s lives — including people who have been in the UK for decades with families and children — as some sort of bargaining position. This is actually nothing other than fascist mentality — from the woman who is the closest thing that the UK has ever had to a poltician of the calibre of Adolf Hitler. If you had bothered to follow what she did with her stint at the Home Office, you would know that this evil bitch is opposed to the rule of law, hates immigrants, has removed the rights of UK citizens to marry foreigners unless they earn over £18,500 p.a., and is married to a rich banker (and herself was a banker before she became a fascist politician).

  4. First they’ll take back their 8000 pensioners that have bought stolen houses and land in Cyprus, not? The faster England gets into this issue the faster Cyprus can reunite and then kick out the UK-occupation from Cyprus and don’t forget to take back all English migrants – aka the USA – who are squatting the continent of 500 nations illegally since 400 years like the Ottomen.