'Mutineers' hit back as tensions rise over Brexit bill

David Cameron Meets Ministers To Discuss Steel Crisis

David Cameron Meets Ministers To Discuss Steel Crisis

One of several votes yesterday was on whether the bill should include a line repealing the 1972 act - crucial to taking us out of the EU.

MP have continued to scrutinise the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill amid mounting evidence of Tory unrest about Mrs May's approach to Brexit.

Pro-remain Conservative MP Anna Soubry, who was also featured on the Telegraph's front page, told MPs the coverage by the newspaper was a "blatant piece of bullying" and she regarded it as a "badge of honour".

But despite the revolt, the measure passed through Parliament easily during the first day of debate over whether to amend the EU Withdrawal Bill.

The government faces potential defeat on key amendments to the bill if rebel Conservative MPs ally with Labour, increasing the risks for May's minority government.

The MPs were pictured smiling on the front of the Telegraph after they indicated they would vote against Theresa May's efforts to fix the date of Brexit on 29 March 2019.

However Dominic Grieve, the former attorney general who was named by the Daily Telegraph and has tabled around 20 amendments to the bill, told AFP earlier this week: "I'm not trying to stop Brexit".

Another potential rebel, Jonathan Djanogly, tweeted "to me this is about upholding our constitution and negotiating position", and Bob Neill said "the bullies will not succeed", adding: "We will continue to work constructively for the best Brexit possible - that's our duty - and what parliamentary democracy is all about".

He said: "I can only see downsides in terms of the government losing control of one of the levers it could use to control the negotiations".

Keir Starmer, Labour's chief Brexit spokesman, said the proposal was "a significant climbdown from a weak government on the verge of defeat".

Former Cabinet Office minister Sir Oliver Letwin told MPs that he would vote with the government on Tuesday night, but the part of the withdrawal bill that deals with retained European Union law is a "frightful mess".

"If it doesn't what will happen is it will get massacred in the House of Lords - quite rightly".

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