London (July 18, 2018): British Prime Minister Theresa May’s government narrowly survived the latest Brexit challenge Tuesday after winning a crucial parliamentary vote.
The government avoided defeat when MPs voted against by 307 votes to 301 against a proposal by Remain-supporting members of her Conservative party that would have significantly undermined her Brexit strategy.The pro-EU faction was furious that, earlier in the week, May’s government had made a number of concessions to the Brexit-supporting faction.
The dispute has exposed the deep divisions in May’s party and could yet lead to significant challenges to her authority.
Earlier this month two of May’s top Cabinet ministers — Brexit secretary David Davis and foreign secretary Boris Johnson — quit over what they see as a watering-down of the UK’s blueprint for leaving the European Union.In two votes in the UK parliament this week, the latest on Tuesday night, May only just avoided defeat at the hands of pro-EU members of her party.
The “Brexiteers” were angry that May’s Chequers agreement — a plan for a Brexit strategy hatched at May’s official country residence 10 days ago — envisaged a close future relationship with the EU.The original Chequers agreement caused the resignations of Davis and Johnson. The latter claimed the Chequers deal would leave the UK in the status of a “colony” to Europe and claimed the Brexit “dream was dying.”Several junior ministers and parliamentary secretaries also resigned over the deal. Meanwhile, the government has abandoned the vote on whether MPs should start their summer recess five days early — beginning this Thursday instead of next Tuesday — following criticism from lawmakers.