Brexit bombshell for Britain’s PM
THE House of Lords has voted overwhelmingly to guarantee the rights of EU citizens living in Britain, which is a huge Brexit setback for Prime Minister Theresa May’s Government.
Peers are now insisting she agrees the guarantee, within three months of triggering Article 50.
The bill will now go back to the House of Commons for MPs’ consideration before, finally, passing through the House of Lords, whose members voted 358 to 256 for the amendment.
“We are disappointed the Lords have chosen to amend a bill that the House of Commons passed without amendment,” said a Government spokesperson from the Department for Exiting the EU.
“The bill has a straightforward purpose: to enact the referendum result and allow the Government to get on with negotiations.
“Our position on EU nationals has repeatedly been made clear. We want to guarantee the rights of EU citizens already living in Britain, and the rights of British nationals living in other member states, as early as we can.”
The Government had previously argued against sanctioning the rights of EU nationals until British expats in Europe are given the same assurances.
The House of Commons must now decide whether to accept the new amendment, or vote against it. If MPs choose the latter, it will go back to the House of Lords in a process known as “ping-pong”.
And Peers have hinted that they are unlikely to vote against it at the second time of asking.
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