• STV
  • MySTV

Five Labour MPs quit frontbench roles over Brexit Bill

Laura Smith, Tonia Antoniazzi, Ged Killen, Anna McMorrin and Ellie Reeves all resigned.

Westminster: Votes on Withdrawal Bill amendments continue.
Westminster: Votes on Withdrawal Bill amendments continue. PA

Five Labour MPs have resigned from their frontbench roles ahead of voting on House of Lords amendments to the EU Withdrawal Bill.

Junior minister Laura Smith resigned from the shadow cabinet along with Tonia Antoniazzi, Ged Killen, Anna McMorrin and Ellie Reeves.

The Lords amendment would force the Government to prioritise a European Economic Area (EEA) deal - the so-called Norway Model - in negotiations with the EU.

It was rejected on Wednesday night by 327 votes to 126, majority 201.

The Labour leadership had urged its MPs to abstain but 75 voted for and 15 against.

Jeremy Corbyn's frontbench had opposed the EEA model and introduced its own amendment, 51A, which called for a post-Brexit deal guaranteeing "full access" to European markets.

It was also defeated in the House of Commons on Wednesday night, by 82 votes.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: "I understand the difficulties MPs representing constituencies which voted strongly for Leave or Remain have on the EEA amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill.

"The Labour Party respects the outcome of the EU referendum and does not support the EEA or Norway model as it is not the right for option for Britain."

It comes after SNP MPs staged a walkout during Prime Minister's Question over the lack of debate given to the devolution amendments of the Bill on Tuesday.

The Scottish Labour for the Single Market accused Corbyn's top team of a "dereliction of duty" by failing to back EEA membership.

Scottish Labour for the Single Market co-chairman, Ian Murray MP, said: "This was a missed opportunity for parliament to defeat the Tories' reckless plans for a hard Brexit, and save tens of thousands of jobs across the UK.

"For the Labour frontbench to abstain on this crucial issue was a dereliction of duty, and future generations will ask us why we didn't do more for the workers we represent.

"But the Brexit process is far from over and the fight goes on.

"We will continue to campaign to protect jobs, oppose austerity and defend workers' rights."

Smith, MP for Crewe and Nantwich, said she resigned in order to vote with the Conservative government against EEA membership.

Pledging to support Mr Corbyn from the backbenches, she said on Twitter she could not vote for anything "that does not deliver the exit from the European Union that my constituents voted for".

She added: "Remaining in the EEA is not the right way forward for our country. Taking rules from Brussels but having no role in making them is simply not good enough for Britain.

"Remaining in the EEA would represent a failure to address the concerns of those who voted Leave and heal the divisions in our society.

"I promised Crewe and Nantwich that I would respect the referendum result. Remaining in the EEA is not compatible with that."

https://stv.tv/news/politics/1418558-brexit-is-main-risk-to-scotland-s-economy-report-finds/ | default

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
ShowHide
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on its website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.