Economy

Pound rises after 'meaningful' Brexit vote

Pound rises after 'meaningful' Brexit vote

BRITISH Prime Minister Theresa May has suffered a huge defeat after the House of Commons overwhelmingly rejected her Brexit deal.

Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn speaks to parliament on the Brexit deal.

'It's no particular cause for rejoicing for me, after all I've been trying for so long to get the government back in the place the PM was in her Lancaster House speech a year ago, ' he said.

"She should call an immediate General Election".

Theresa May's Brexit deal has been rejected by Parliament by a majority of 230.

"If a deal is impossible, and no one wants no deal, then who will finally have the courage to say what the only positive solution is?" he said.

Downing Street said the Prime Minister would consult "senior parliamentarians", not the opposition leader, on a deal based on the same principles of taking control of "money, borders, laws" with "an independent trade policy".

'This is a catastrophic defeat of this government.

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Mrs May said: "Tonight's vote tells us nothing about what it does support, nothing about how it intends to uphold people's decision". All 10 DUP MPs also voted against.

Before the vote, Mrs May made a last-ditch plea to convince MPs to back her plan, saying: "I believe we have a duty to deliver on the democratic decision of the British people, and to do so in a way that brings our country together". But the final result was much worse for May than many had predicted: In the end, 118 Conservative members of Parliament voted with all opposition members against the deal, which was defeated by a vote of 432 to 202. MPs fearful of a "no deal" scenario have vowed to use parliamentary procedures to force the government to seek an alternative plan that the Commons can support.

The Prime Minister said she would try and renegotiate her deal with the EU.

As lawmakers debated in the House of Commons chamber, outside there was a cacophony of chants, drums and music from rival bands of pro-EU and pro-Brexit protesters.

In the event of a defeat, the government must set out what happens next by Monday at the latest.

She barely survived a similar vote in 2016.

"Firms in the finance industry have put contingency plans in place to minimise disruption for their customers in a "no deal" scenario but critical cliff-edge risks remain, including on the transfer of personal data and the operation of cross-border contracts", said Stephen Jones, chief executive of UK Finance.

Amid the uncertainty, some members of Parliament from both government and opposition parties are exploring ways to use parliamentary procedures to wrest control of the Brexit process away from the government, so that lawmakers by majority vote could specify a new plan for Britain's European Union exit.