Analysts at Rabobank offered their take on the recent Brexit drama, wherein the UK parliament did not vote on the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s withdrawal deal on Saturday.
The amendment that was put forward by former Cabinet minister Letwin threw a spanner in the works. This amendment withholds the parliamentary approval of Prime Minister Johnson’s Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union until the legislation to implement this deal is fully in place. It was passed by 322 to 306. As a consequence, the Benn Act kicked in and the PM was forced to ask the EU for a delay to the October 31 deadline. Although Johnson reluctantly complied with the law by sending an unsigned letter requesting the delay, he sent a second warning against any delay.
The tightness of the Letwin vote indicated that Johnson could actually have had the numbers to get his deal through the Commons. This factor has limited the disappointment for GBP this morning. The government will seek to hold another meaningful vote on the current deal on October 21. But, Speaker Bercow isn’t obliged to allow the government to repeatedly hold debates on the same subject. Instead, the immediate focus in parliament could be on the various bills that need to be in place to facilitate the Withdrawal Agreement and on various amendments that could be put forward by the opposition.
While EU leaders have been informed by Donald Tusk that PM Johnson has asked for the Article 50 to be extended, they will not be in a hurry to respond and will wait for further developments in the UK parliament.
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