May Suffers Major Lords Defeat As Peers Vote To Keep Open EU Customs Union Membership

HM Parliament
Major defeat: Peers in the Lords vote to keep option of EU customs union after Brexit.

Theresa May has suffered a major Parliamentary defeat over Brexit after the House of Lords voted to keep open the option of staying in the EU Customs Union.

Peers voted by 348 to 225 for a cross-party amendment to the EU (Withdrawal) Bill to require the Government to say how its negotiations with Brussels will continue the crucial tariff-free trade arrangement with the European Union.

The huge size of the majority – 123 votes – underlined the strength of the alliance of Labour, Liberal Democrat, crossbencher and Tory rebel peers and spells trouble for the PM as a raft of other amendments are due in coming weeks.

Brexit minister Lord Callanan warned that even if the amendment was passed, he would not give “false hope” that there would be any concessions as a result.

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