- The British parliamentary president John Bercow makes it clear that the government can not put the same vote again for the withdrawal agreement rejected by the lower house.
- The speaker's statement has caused massive anger among the government
- May actually wanted to vote again this week and before the EU summit.
Theresa May will not be able to submit the EU exit agreement in its current form to Parliament for the third time. That's what Parliament Speaker of the British House of Commons John Bercow said in a surprise intervention on Monday afternoon. Bercow explained in a short-term statement the procedural rules of the house, which went back to the 17th century. These said that it would not be permissible for Parliament to be asked the same question again and again.
The speaker's statement, as the parliamentary speaker in the UK is called, has caused massive anger among the government. May had until recently endeavored to obtain a majority for the so-called Meaningful Vote, having suffered two significant defeats in January and last week. Bercow, who was in trouble with the Tory government for earlier decisions, has made it clear that a "substantively identical" bill can no longer be tabled. He approved the second vote last week because the Brussels government negotiated legally binding assurances about the Northern Ireland catch-up solution. However, if May had tried to make a third attempt with reference to changed legal opinions from his own house, that would be unreasonable for Parliament. The situation would be different if, for example, the withdrawal agreement was changed in negotiations with the EU. This has been strictly rejected by Brussels until the very end.
The Cabinet had apparently not been forewarned that the Bercow Declaration was due; Negotiators were at this time in negotiations with the Northern Irish DUP, which supports May's government, and with Euro-critical deputies from its own party. However, on Monday it was unlikely that the attempt to retrain dozens of MPs could succeed. Nevertheless, the advance of the powerful House Speaker now completely changes the balance of power. For now, May must either make fundamental compromises with the opposition or seek massive concessions from Brussels. Even a no deal has thus moved more and more into the realm of the possible. Overall, the politically volatile situation in the UK has become even more uncertain. a new vote of no confidence from the Labor Party will now be discussed again. However, in initial reactions to the spokesman's explanation, Tory MPs also discussed over-voting Bercow with a vote in the House, which would amount to a declaration of war on the opposition.
May will now fly to Brussels on Thursday for the EU summit and, as Parliament had decided last week, will have to ask for a postponement of the withdrawal date. She will remain until March 29 to develop a Plan B and clarify how much delay she is asking the EU partners to do.