On Tuesday 22 October, the Withdrawal Agreement Bill passed its second reading in the House of Commons 329 votes to 299. After 3 years and 500 hours of debate, the House has finally agreed on a way forward.
However, MPs voted 322 to 308 to reject the programme motion, which set out the accelerated timetable for the Bill in order to get a deal signed and reach the 31 October deadline.
I voted with the Government on the programme motion and – as I did three times before – voted for the Withdrawal Agreement.
Under the terms of the ‘Benn Act’, the Prime Minister was compelled on behalf of Parliament to send a formal request to the European Union to delay the UK’s departure until 31 January. Responding to the House after the vote, the Prime Minister said he would pause the Bill and await a decision from the EU as to whether they will extend Article 50. We are now waiting for that decision before progress can be made.