A cross party group of senior MPs are to force the prime minister to stop a no-deal Brexit, as they are tabling a bill that requires Theresa May to extend Article 50 negotiations.
The group includes Sir Oliver Letwin and Labour’s Yvette Cooper, they aim to pass the bill in Parliament on Thursday, following last night’s disastrous failure for MPs to unite behind May’s deal.
Also, in the group is Tory chair Dame Caroline Spelman, Liberal Democrat Norman Lamb, Commons Brexit Committee chair Hilary Benn and the former attorney general Dominic Grieve.
The group plan to push the bill through the Commons on Thursday in the hope the House of Lords will then grant approval for an emergency EU summit on 10 April.
This single claused bill will require May to table the motion to seek approval from MPs to approve the Article 50 extension.
Cooper said, “We are now in a really dangerous situation with a serious and growing risk of no-deal in 10 days’ time.
“The prime minister has a responsibility to prevent that happening.
“She needs to put forward a proposal, including saying how long an extension she thinks we need to sort things out.
“If the government won’t act urgently, then Parliament has a responsibility to try to ensure that happens even though we are right up against the deadline.
“Parliament has tried to jam into two days a process of finding consensus that I wish the prime minister had started two years ago.
“But right now, nothing has been agreed.
“So that means that whatever happens in the next few days, the UK needs an extension beyond April 12 if we are to avoid the damage and chaos of no-deal.
“For the sake of jobs, public services and our national security we need to avert no-deal.”
Sir Oliver added: “This is a last-ditch attempt to prevent our country being exposed to the risks inherent in a no-deal exit.
“We realise this is difficult. But it is definitely worth trying.”
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