Speaker says PM cannot bring back deal to parliament without substantial changes
'The House of Commons Speaker has thwarted any attempt by Theresa May to bring a third meaningful vote to parliament, unless there has been substantial change to the Brexit deal.
With Theresa May’s plans thrown into chaos by the move, one of her chief law officers warned the government could be forced to cut short the parliamentary session and restart in order to bring back the Brexit deal.
John Bercow’s shock move, which drew immediate criticism from May’s allies, suggested he believed such a fundamental change would involve a renegotiation at EU level rather than clarification of the legal advice written by the attorney general, something that had been suggested this week.
The solicitor general, Robert Buckland, said the decision was a “constitutional crisis” and that the government might have to consider the drastic step of ending the parliamentary session early and restarting a new session.
The Speaker has seized his Brexit moment – and now all bets are off
“We’re in a major constitutional crisis here ... This has given us quite a lot to think about in the immediate term. There are ways around this – a prorogation of parliament and a new session – but we are now talking about not just days but hours to 29 March,” Buckland told BBC News.
“Frankly we could have done without this, but it’s something we’re going to have to negotiate with and deal with.”
Downing Street was blindsided by the announcement and unable to give a response at its regular afternoon briefing for journalists. “The speaker did not forewarn us of the content of his statement or the fact that he was making one,” May’s spokeswoman said.
Ministers described the government as being in a state of shock. “It’s miserable, I think the first thing is the government having to come to terms with it,” one said.'
Read more: Brexit: John Bercow rules out third meaningful vote on same deal