Parliament is set to vote on Theresa May’s Brexit “Plan B” on 29 January, it was announced today.
House of Commons speaker Andrea Leadsom confirmed the date this morning, saying MPs will debate the new plan as May sets out her next steps towards Brexit.
The news comes as a Yougov poll released today found that the UK would vote to remain part of the EU by a 12 percentage point margin in a second referendum.
The survey, undertaken yesterday for the People’s Vote campaign, found that 56 per cent of the population would vote to remain in the EU compared to 44 per cent who would vote leave in a re-run of June 2016’s referendum.
The original question put to the British people saw the leave vote win with 52 per cent of the vote, compared to 48 per cent who would have preferred to remain.
“The Remain lead, 12 percent, is the highest yet,” Peter Kellner, former president of Yougov, told the People’s Vote campaign, according to Reuters.
Former prime minister Tony Blair claimed this morning that it is “inevitable” that Brexit would be delayed after May’s Brexit deal suffered a crushing defeat in parliament on Tuesday.
“If I was the government now I would already be having discussions with Europe about the terms of an extension,” he added in comments to Radio 4’s Today programme.
“What she’s got to do now is take a step back run the options through parliament and parliament’s got to come to a decision.”
He claimed the UK faces three options – a Canada-style hard Brexit, a soft Brexit in the form of a Norway-style deal, or putting the question again to the British population.
“I would say we need further time to clarify that or alternatively once you run that [process] and there’s a majority for a referendum … then of course you need the time to do that,” Blair said.
France this morning pushed the button on a €50m (£44.24m) contingency plan to deal with the fallout from a potential no-deal Brexit.
The plan would help ports and airports cope with any possible disruption if the UK falls out of the EU without a deal on 29 March, when Article 50 means the UK must leave the bloc.
The Prime Minister has repeatedly ruled out extending Article 50 but the Telegraph reported this morning that chancellor Philip Hammond told business leaders that a no-deal Brexit could be taken off the table.