If parliament goes against the government, the UK will ‘lose’ its ability to negotiate

The EU is set to take any opportunity it can to ‘capitalise’ on parliamentary infighting, in a bid to punish the UK at the negotiating table.

May has urged her quarrelling party to unite in a bid to overturn the changes made to the European Union Withdrawal Bill by the House of Lords.

The unelected body has already caused huge disruption for May, with onlookers from the EU now hoping the House of Commons will not only derail her leadership, but will weaken the UK’s negotiating position ‘beyond repair.’

One insider, overheard in Brussels and subsequently reported on, said that the bloc is hoping for a government defeat, in order to have the ‘upper hand’ as the two sides thrash out the remaining issues prior to the UK’s departure in March 2019.

‘A loss for the government is a big win for the EU’

They said: “A loss for the UK government is a big win for the EU.”

‘Ready for Brexit day’

A spokesperson for May has publicly echoed Mrs May’s own belief that all parliament needs to unify in order to keep Brexit on track. The spokesperson told journalists: “We believe it’s a vital piece of legislation for ensuring our statute book is ready for Brexit day and for delivering the smoothest possible exit from the European Union, and with that mind we would urge all MPs (members of parliament) to support the government’s position.” The two debate begins on Tuesday (June 12).

Full list of amendments:

Amendment 1 – customs union

Prevents the repeal of the 1972 act bringing the UK into the EU unless the government lays out plans to negotiate a continued customs union after Brexit. Proposer: John Kerr, former diplomat and crossbench peer Government view: opposes it

Amendment 3 – environmental protections

Maintains EU environmental protections in domestic law, with a body to enforce compliance. Proposer: John Krebs, zoologist and crossbench peer Government view: says same principles should be included in a new environment bill

Amendment 4 – enhanced scrutiny

Prevents EU law on areas such as work, health and safety, and environmental standards being modified by secondary legislation without the approval of parliament. Proposer: Dianne Hayter, Labour’s deputy leader of the Lords Government view: opposes it

Amendment 5 – charter of fundamental rights

Transfers the EU’s charter of fundamental rights into domestic law. Proposer: David Pannick, barrister and crossbench peer Government view: opposes it

Amendments 10, 43 and 45 – Henry VIII powers

Limits the scope of ministers to amend retained EU law under secondary legislation, also known as Henry VIII powers, by changing the wording so it can only happen if “necessary” rather than just if a minister deems it “appropriate”. Proposer: Robert Rogers, former parliamentary official and crossbench peer Government view: opposes it

Amendment 19 – meaningful vote

Enhances the amendment Tory rebel Dominic Grieve got through the Commons in December guaranteeing a meaningful final vote on the Brexit deal by allowing the Commons to decide the next course of action if parliament rejects the deal. Proposer: Douglas Hogg, former Tory cabinet minister, now life peer. Government view: suggests that if parliament votes against the deal, a minister will set out how the government plans to proceed within 28 days

Amendment 20 – parliamentary approval for negotiations

Requires parliamentary approval for negotiations on phase two before they begin. Proposer: John Monks, former Trades Union Congress head and Labour peer Government view: opposes it

Amendment 24 – child refugees

Requires ministers to seek agreement to maintain the right of unaccompanied child refugees in one EU state to join relatives in the UK after Brexit. Proposer: Alf Dubs, kindertransport survivor, champion of child refugees and Labour peer Government view: proposes an intention to seek a deal with the EU so such children can join relatives who are lawful residents in the UK

Amendment 25 – Northern Ireland

Requires no changes to Irish border arrangements without the agreement of both the UK and Irish governments. Proposer: Chris Patten, Conservative peer and former minister who chaired a commission on policing in Northern Ireland Government view: proposes amendments so the bar on border changes refers only to physical infrastructure

Amendment 32 – continued cooperation

Formalises the idea that EU law can continue in UK law, and the UK can stay in EU agencies. Proposer: Nick Baines, bishop of Leeds Government view: accepts it

Amendment 37, 39 and 125 – no fixed exit date

The government had amended the bill to set 29 March 2019 as a definitive exit date. The Lords changed this to make any date subject to parliamentary approval. Proposer: Charles Wellesley, hereditary Conservative peer Government view: opposes it

Amendment 51 – the EEA

Obliges the government to prioritise staying in the European Economic Area, known as the Norway option. Proposer: Waheed Alli, media executive and Labour peer Government view: opposes it

Amendment 52 – ability to challenge retained EU law

Removes a section of the bill letting ministers use directives to decide who is able to challenge the validity of retained EU law post-Brexit. Proposer: Alan Beith, former Liberal Democrat deputy leader Government view: opposes it

Amendment 53 – compliance with EU principles

Guarantees the right of challenge to a domestic law if it fails to comply with the general principles of EU law as set out by the European court of justice. Proposer: Pannick Government view: will accept this as long as such challenges are limited to three years after exit

Amendment 110 – the sifting committee

Obliges a committee to scrutinise all ministerial directives used to amend retained EU law. Proposer: Rogers Government view: opposes it