May pledges Brexit vote by March 12 in play for time

LONDON • Theresa May launched a last ditch bid to stop Parliament from takingBrexit policy out of her hands by promising politicians a binding vote on her divorce deal by March 12.

The British prime minister confirmed there will be not be a so-called “meaningful vote” on the negotiated terms of the UK’s split from the European Union (EU) in the House of Commons this week.

May is battling an open revolt from within her own Cabinet as ministers join forces in an effort to stop the UK falling out of the EU on March 29 without a deal.

Environment Secretary and leading Brexiteer Michael Gove struck a conciliatory tone towards three members of the Cabinet who are threatening to vote against the government this week, saying all voices in the party should be listened to.

A letter from Amber Rudd, the work and pensions secretary; David Gauke, the justice minister; and Greg Clark, the business secretary; was “an expression of their view” and not government policy, he told the BBC’s “Andrew Marr Show”.

He also warned against his fellow Brexiteers against conducting a “heresy hunt” against those who disagreed with them.

Labour’s Party Deputy Leader Tom Watson reiterated comments made by his colleague Barry Gardiner, saying the party is moving closer towards backing a second referendum as soon as this week.

Labour could support a plan offered by lawmakers Peter Kyle and Phil Wilson to back May’s Brexit deal so long as it is then put to a public vote, he said. — Bloomberg