Brextension: UK lawmakers vote to seek delay of European Union departure

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Wednesday night's vote on ruling out a no-deal Brexit exposed the level of disruption a vote on an amendment to a government motion could cause, when the Spelman amendment, which was created to remove reference to leaving without a deal remaining the default option, was passed by a slim majority of four, 312 to 308, altering the government's motion.

May is unwilling to abandon her hard-won divorce deal with the European Union, which sets out the terms of Britain's withdrawal and the outline of future relations with the bloc.

Labour Party MPs abstained from the vote, arguing that now was not the right time to push for a public vote.

Today Chancellor Philip Hammond hinted that Attorney General Geoffrey Cox could revisit his legal advice on whether Britain would be trapped in the Irish backstop "indefinitely" - unlocking votes for Mrs May's deal.

Lawmaker Andrew Bridgen accused her of pursuing a "scorched earth" policy of destroying all other Brexit options to leave lawmakers with a choice between her deal and a long delay.

It's possible May might bring her plan to Parliament for yet a third vote next week if she is able to forge a compromise with the dissenters in her ranks. She is seeking to win over opponents in her own party and its Northern Irish political ally, the Democratic Unionist Party.

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"It's still really hard to see how the numbers stack up for Theresa May, but she's giving it one more go", he said. She has warned Brexit supporters who oppose her deal that if no withdrawal agreement is passed in the coming days, the only option will be to seek a long extension that could mean Brexit never happens. Officials and national leaders in the bloc are exasperated at the events in London. "Unless there is a clear majority in the House of Commons for something precise, there is no reason at all for the European Council to agree on a prolongation". They want to put countries off the idea...

"Under no circumstances an extension in the dark!"

After a highly volatile week for the pound during which it hit a nine-month high, rising from below US$1.30 to a high of nearly US$1.34 as investors bet Britain would avoid a no-deal Brexit, a Reuters report said.

"I would be delighted if a consensus emerges behind the Prime Minister's deal over the next day or two".

He believes a short delay would be useless and is allegedly urging European Union leaders to give Britain more time. The U.K. won't be represented in the European Parliament after it quits the EU; its seats already have been given to other countries to fill in the elections.

European Council President Donald Tusk tweeted that he will appeal to EU leaders "to be open to a long extension if the United Kingdom finds it necessary to rethink its Brexit strategy and build consensus about it".

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