Brexit: British MPs vote against all alternative plans

London: After rejecting the British government’s deal with the European Union for three times, the MPs have now voted against four possible alternative plans for Brexit.

After leaving the European Union, various alternative proposals to retain much closer economic ties were made but to no avail. All failed to win a majority of votes in parliament.

280 votes were garnered in favour in the second referendum proposal but it was beaten by 292 votes against. The next plan was to stay in a permanent customs union with the EU and it won 273 votes but there were 276 votes against. This plan raised hopes among its supporters that the idea could be revived.

Following this, the government said the results demonstrated that its plan was the best and hinted that it could be put before parliament once again this week. Brexit Secretary Stephen Barclay said that the Parliament had once again failed to find a clear majority for any of the options. “The default legal position is that the UK will leave the EU in just 11 days’ time” without a deal, he said.

Barclay pointed out that the alternative to a no-deal exit on 12 April would be a long extension that would mean having to hold European Parliament elections. “If the House (of Commons) were to agree a deal this week it may still be possible to avoid European parliamentary elections,” he said.

Nick Boles, a Conservative MP who had proposed a plan for close ties with the EU after Brexit, announced he was leaving the party after the vote. “I have given everything to an attempt to find a compromise… I accept I have failed. I have failed chiefly because my party refuses to compromise. I regret therefore to announce I can no longer sit for this party,” he said in an emotional statement.

NT Bureau