May and Corbyn clash at PMQs HOURS before Brexit talks

May scolds Corbyn for waiting TWO WEEKS to agree to Brexit talks – as they clash at bad-tempered PMQs just hours before meeting to try to thrash out a united way forward

  • Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn squared up at PMQs ahead of Brexit meeting 
  • Labour leader suffered humiliating defeats in series of Commons votes last night
  • The only vote he won was a non-binding expression of will to avoid no-deal exit
  • After last night’s votes Mr Corbyn finally agreed to meet Mrs May at Number 10 
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Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn clashed bitterly over Brexit at PMQs today – just hours before they are holding talks intended to find a joint way forward.

Mrs May and the Labour leader brutally laid into each other in a particularly bad-tempered session – with each accusing the other of scuppering the chances of a deal with the EU.

At one point as they traded blows, Mr Corbyn jibed that he was ‘looking forward’ to their talks later. 

And when he accused her of refusing to compromise, Mrs May retorted: ‘He’s a fine one to talk about coming together when it was only last night when he agreed to actually meet me to talk about these issues.’ 

The pair are due to meet around at around 3pm in the PM’s Commons office – depriving the Opposition leader of the chance to strike a pose outside the famous No10 door. 




Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn brutally laid into each other in a particularly bad-tempered PMQs session today


Mrs May scolded the Opposition leader today for waiting two weeks to agree to a meeting

Mr Corbyn was finally forced to climb down over his refusal to hold talks with Mrs May after an humiliating set of Commons votes last night. 

In a dire night for Mr Corbyn, 14 of his own MPs voted against a proposal he backed to keep Britain in the EU beyond March 29 if no deal is agreed by the end of the month. 

Most of the rebels represent constituencies that voted Leave in the 2016 referendum. 

An amendment pushing Labour’s Brexit policy was then roundly defeated, before Mrs May’s plan for returning to Brussels and renegotiating the Irish backstop was passed – with support from seven Labour MPs.  

Mr Corbyn only ended up on the winning side in a non-binding vote against a no deal Brexit.

A series of frontbenchers did not register a vote on the Cooper plan to delay Article 50, including Melanie Onn, Mike Kane, and Gloria de Piero.

MailOnline understands none of them had permission to be absent. Tory sources confirmed that they were not ‘paired’ with other MPs – the mechanism for balancing out votes when people cannot attend the Commons.   

Speaking at PMQs today, Mr Corbyn said: ‘I’m looking forward to meeting the Prime Minister later on today.

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‘Because I want to put forward Labour’s alternatives which could command a majority in this House and are about protecting jobs and people’s living standards across this country.’

He complained that Mrs May seemed to be putting her faith in technology to solve the Irish border issue.  

‘So can the Prime Minister be very clear what technological advances is she expecting to be made in the next 58 days?’ he sniped.

Mrs May shot back: ‘Last night a majority in this House voted to maintain the commitment to no hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland. 

‘To leave the European Union with a deal. And to set out to the European Union what it will take to ensure that this House can support a deal.

‘That is a change to the backstop. That is what I will be taking back to the European Union. That is what we will be doing to ensure that we can avoid no deal.’

She added: ‘He stands up regularly and says he doesn’t want no deal. 

‘I’m working to ensure we get a deal. 

‘He has opposed every move by this Government to get a deal. He’s the one who’s risking no deal.’ 


Jeremy Corbyn finally agreed to Brexit talks after the Prime Minister navigated a minefield of votes in the Commons last night (pictured)


A diagram showing how Graham Brady’s amendment – calling on Theresa May to renegotiate the Irish backstop – won the support of the House of Commons

Tuesday night’s seven amendments: What did MPs vote on and what were the results?

MPs faced a choice of seven Plan Bs for Brexit in the Commons on Tuesday night as the Government scrambles for a way forward on Brexit.

Sir Graham Brady’s amendment demanding changes to the backstop in the divorce deal won the support of the House of Commons after it was endorsed by Theresa May.   

The hope is that securing a majority for the demand will demonstrate to Brussels that the deal can pass if the backstop is legally time limited.

Remain supporters backed a plan from Yvette Cooper to block no deal by delaying Brexit if there is not an agreement by February 26, but the amendment was rejected. 

The House also backed an amendment from Caroline Spelman which rejected a no-deal Brexit but without a clear plan for avoiding one.  

Other amendments from Tory Dominic Grieve Labour’s Rachel Reeves, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and SNP leader Ian Blackford were rejected.   


SIR GRAHAM BRADY’S PLAN TO FIX THE BACKSTOP BY DEMANDING CHANGES FROM THE EU – BACKED BY MAY

WHAT IT DOES: Proposes replacing the Northern Ireland backstop with ‘alternative arrangements’ to avoid a hard border. Also supports leaving with a deal.

WHOSE PLAN? Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 Committee.

HOW IT WORKS: Allows Mrs May to go to Brussels and say the EU must make concessions on the backstop or get rid of it.

DID IT SUCCEED? Yes – MPs backed the plan by 317 votes to 301. 

WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT? Mrs May will go to Brussels and say changing the backstop would save her deal.

YVETTE COOPER’S PLAN TO DELAY BREXIT IF THERE IS NOT A DEAL

WHAT IT DOES: Forces ministers to extend Article 50 beyond March 29 to stop No Deal.

WHOSE PLAN? Labour’s Yvette Cooper, former Tory ministers Nick Boles and Sir Oliver Letwin.

HOW IT WORKS: Ministers lose the power to decide what is debated on February 5, which passes to backbench MPs. Miss Cooper proposes a law forcing Mrs May to ask for a delay on Brexit if No Deal is agreed by February 26.

DID IT SUCCEED? No – MPs rejected the plan by 321 votes to 298. 

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED NEXT? Mrs May would have lost control of Brexit with No Deal off the table. 

DOMINIC GRIEVE’S PLAN TO HAND POWER TO MPS

WHAT IT DOES: Give control over Parliamentary business to MPs.

WHOSE PLAN? Dominic Grieve QC, former attorney general and ardent Remainer, and MPs who want a second referendum.

HOW IT WORKS: Government loses power over the Commons every Tuesday from February 12 to March 26 so backbench MPs could vote on Brexit. Could delay Article 50 or change the deal to include a customs union or second referendum.

DID IT SUCCEED?  No – MPs rejected the plan by 321 votes to 301.  

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED NEXT? A second referendum would have been the most likely outcome. 

DAME CAROLINE SPELMAN’S PLAN TO RULE OUT NO DEAL

WHAT IT DOES: Stops the UK leaving without a deal.

WHOSE PLAN: Former Tory Cabinet minister Caroline Spelman and Labour MP Jack Dromey.

HOW IT WORKS: Rejects No Deal.   

DID IT SUCCEED? Yes – MPs backed the plan by 318 votes to 310. 

WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT? Mrs May’s main bargaining chip is weakened but there is no means of enforcing the vote. 

RACHEL REEVES’ PLAN TO DELAY BREXIT IF THERE IS NO DEAL

WHAT IT DOES: Just like the Cooper plan, this demands the Government ask for an extension to Article 50 if there is no deal by February 26 – but does so only in political terms without trying to change the law.  

WHOSE PLAN: Labour MP Rachel Reeves  

HOW IT WORKS: Makes a political statement to put pressure on the Government. 

DID IT SUCCEED? No – MPs rejected the plan by 322 votes to 290.  

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED NEXT? Mrs May’s main bargaining chip would have been limited by a new deadline – hampering her hopes of changing the deal. 

JEREMY CORBYN’S PLAN TO FUDGE THE VOTE BY DEMANDING CHANGE BUT HINTING AT A REFERENDUM

WHAT IT DOES: Demands changes to the deal and hints at a second referendum.

WHOSE PLAN? Corbyn, Labour frontbench.

HOW IT WORKS: Ministers must let Parliament discuss No Deal, and proposes staying in a permanent customs union. If that fails, it suggests a second referendum.

DID IT SUCCEED? No – MPs rejected the plan by 327 votes to 296.  

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED NEXT?  A second referendum would become the most likely outcome of Brexit.

IAN BLACKFORD’S PLAN TO MAKE A POINT ABOUT SCOTLAND

WHAT IT DOES: Notes that the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Assembly and Commons all voted against the deal and Scotland voted Remain 

WHOSE PLAN? SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford 

HOW IT WORKS: Makes a political declaration about Scotland’s right to determine its own future.

DID IT SUCCEED? No – MPs rejected the plan by 327 votes to 39.  

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED NEXT? Nothing.   

 

 

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