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Amber Rudd says parliament will stop a ‘no deal’ Brexit happening

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Parliament will stop Britain leaving the European Union without a deal, one of Theresa May’s top ministers has claimed.

Amber Rudd, who returned to the cabinet last week as work and pensions secretary, said she expected the prime minister’s deal to be approved by MPs when it is put to a vote next month.

“It is my view that when the deal comes before parliament it will get through, despite what people say,” she said.

“But I do also feel, having spent the past six or seven months on the backbenches talking to various other backbenchers, that parliament will stop a no deal.

When asked if the choice was then not between the PM’s deal and no deal, Ms Rudd responded: “There’s deal, there’s no deal, there’s no Brexit. There’s three ways this could go.”

This was echoed by Labour’s John McDonnell, who said there was no parliamentary majority for no deal.



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Speaking at a speech to business leaders at Reuters’ headquarters in London, the shadow chancellor said: “We cannot countenance no-deal. It gives you some security we will not fall off the cliff-edge.

“There is a will in parliament to prevent that happening.”

The comments have been seized upon as a contradiction of the prime minister, who said in the Commons on Thursday: “So the choice is clear: we can choose to leave with no deal; we can risk no Brexit at all; or we can choose to unite and support the best deal that can be negotiated – this deal.”

Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said: “After these comments from Amber Rudd, it’s time for the government to drop the false choice between a bad deal and no deal, and to come forward with a plan that can command the majority support of parliament.”








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Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, a supporter of the People’s Vote campaign for a second referendum, said: “It is becoming increasingly clear that MPs from both sides of the House of Commons recognise that a choice between this miserable Brexit proposal or a ‘no deal’ departure is no choice at all.

“Today, Amber Rudd confirmed that there is no realistic prospect of Parliament allowing a ‘no deal’ Brexit.”

However, some have speculated the comments from Ms Rudd are part of a concerted effort by Downing Street to spook Brexiteers into backing her deal.



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Ms Rudd said in a separate radio interview with the BBC that “Brexiteers may lose their Brexit”.

This is because a defeat in parliament would raise the possibility of there being another general election or even a second referendum – two scenarios in which Brexit might not happen.

The PM is preparing to meet European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker ahead of a special EU summit on Sunday.



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Sky News has learnt the PM’s cabinet agreed she should adopt bolder language when she travels to Brussels to flesh out the political declaration on the future relationship between the UK and EU.

The current document is just seven pages long, but senior ministers were shown a secret 20-page draft that will form the basis of a key meeting between Mr Juncker and Mrs May.

In a two-and-half-hour cabinet meeting ahead of Mrs May’s meeting with Mr Juncker, her top team agreed she should ask the Commission to guarantee the future trade relationship between the UK and the EU should be “at least as good as it gets” to the best free trade deal.



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This is more ambitious than the current language, which suggests the UK should seek a trade deal at an “equivalent” level to other third party countries.

“The more flesh we can put on the bones, the better. It will mean more things to more people and we can take more of the party with us,” one senior government source told Sky’s deputy political editor Beth Rigby.

Mrs May’s cabinet also agreed that the prime minister should seek to formally insert the principle of using technological options for managing the Irish border into the future declaration as she enters into final talks with Brussels.

The PM told her cabinet on Tuesday she was exploring alternative solutions to maintain a soft border on the island of Ireland as she seeks to stave off a confidence vote from mutinous backbenchers.

However the late-stage changes to the text mean that Mrs May might not be able to seal the agreement on Sunday, with more time needed to work through some of the technicalities, according to two senior sources.

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