“Last night was a humiliating & entirely avoidable defeat for the Tory Government.”


Keir Starmer, Shadow Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union: “Whatever comes out of the negotiations, this House voted last night that Parliament should have a meaningful vote, enshrined in law, at the end of the process.

That was a humiliating and entirely avoidable defeat for the Government.

This House now having spoken, will the Secretary of State give an assurance that the Government will not seek to undermine or overturn last night’s result on Report?”

David Davis: “Let me first make an observation about last night’s result. The effect is to defer the powers available under clause 9 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill until after the withdrawal agreement and implementation Bill receives Royal Assent, which means that the timetable will be very compressed. Those who want a smooth and orderly exit from the European Union will hopefully want to see a working statute book, so we will have think about how we respond to last night’s result. We have always taken the House of Commons’ view seriously and will continue to do so.”

Starmer: “That was not the basis upon which the debate was conducted yesterday, so we will obviously have to come back to that.

The next accident waiting to happen is Government amendment 381, which seeks to put a fixed exit date on the face of the Bill.

Rather than repeat last night’s debacle, will the Government commit to dropping that ill-conceived gimmick?”