“Brexit” vote goes governments way, as ministers agree to proposed timetable on triggering of article 50. Ministers voted by 448 to 75 in a motion calling on the government to reveal its proposed plans in regard to “Brexit” it also conceded that March 2017 would be when article 50 of the Lisbon treaty would be triggered.
Labour have been accused of falling in to a government trap on the negotiations, by effectively agreeing to allow the triggering without a vote in the house of Commons. But Labour Brexit spokesman Sir Keir Starmer denied the vote was on Article 50 itself. He suggested that the motion was required in order that the government produce “enough detail and clarity to end the circus of uncertainty”. He made it clear that it was his party’s intention to block any proposed “hard Brexit”, which in reality would be a complete breakdown of all current ties with the EU. This would cause unnecessary grief to the country in the opinion of many opponents, with laws on the economy and trade being thrown into chaos, let alone immigration, and the status of immigrants from the union.
But “Brexit” campaigners have hailed the vote as a win, by confirming that MP’s have accepted the vote, and the timetable for which negotiations will begin. But Pro-remain MP’s are convinced that they’ve only voted on making sure they’ll get to see the negotiations unfold. These pro-remain MP’s have been accused of trying to go against the will of the people in trying to avoid leaving the union.
The vote, whilst not binding is seen as an early point at which both camps can start to control the destiny of the negotiations. In what has been a protracted start, the green light has surely been lit for the start of what is sure to be an interesting couple of years in Westminster, as both camps try to use the negotiations as leverage.
Away from Westminster the ongoing battle to stop the matter being voted through the house of Commons is going through at the supreme court. As the government maintains that it alone has the right to trigger the negotiations, and that it doesn’t need permission from Westminster. It is understood that tonight’s vote in the Commons will not carry any weight against the ongoing appeal.
Joseph is a 34 year old freelance writer from London. He has a wide interest in politics and specialises in the subject. He's also a blog writer in his spare time.