Politics update: MPs push for May to resign, as millions protest against Brexit

Politics update 25.03.2019

1 million people join ‘Put it to the People’ march against Brexit

Put it to the People March Brexit

An estimated one million people took to London’s streets on Saturday in the ‘Put it to the People’ march, demanding a second Brexit referendum.

The march, which began at midday near Hyde Park and ended near Parliament Square, is the biggest demonstration against Brexit since the EU referendum. The protest calls for a public vote on the Brexit outcome, with most supporting a second referendum with remain as an option.

Labour leader Tom Watson spoke at the march along with MPs from all other major parties. Addressing crowds on Saturday, he said: “The prime minister claims she speaks for Britain. Well, have a look out of the window, prime minister.”

“Open your curtains. Switch on your TV. Look at this great crowd today. Here are the people. Theresa May: you don’t speak for us,” he added.

MPs ask for May’s resignation deadline to break deadlock

Theresa May Brexit deal MPs vote against

MPs have told Theresa May she must set a date for her resignation in order to win support to get her Brexit deal through the Commons.

The prime minister gathered Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg and other hardline Brexiteers to her country retreat, Chequers, where she attempted to persuade them to support her deal before another meaningful vote.

May was reportedly told by MPs including Rees-Mogg that in order to drum up enough support to pass her deal through the Commons she would have to indicate that she was willing to let another prime minister lead the next phase of the Brexit process.

Michael Gove, David Lidington and Philip Hammond were all forced to come out and deny a looming coup against the prime minister over the weekend, after discussion around her possible exit date grew.

Will MPs take full control of the Brexit process?

MPs will vote on Monday evening on whether or not to hold a series of indicative votes in the Commons on potential options for moving forward in the Brexit process.

The alternative options could include measures strongly opposed by Theresa May, such as a deal involving a customs union, and a second Brexit referendum.

Downing Street has already indicated that the government would not be bound by the indicative votes, however May’s denial of the wishes of parliament would cause significant uproar.

Petition to revoke article 50 hit 5 million signatures

An online petition to revoke article 50 exceeded 5 million signatures this weekend, making it the most popular petition ever on the government’s website.

Theresa May responded to the petition when it had only hit 3 million signatures earlier in the weekend, with a spokesman saying the prime minister “will not countenance” revoking article 50.

The petition’s webpage gained enough support to crash the government’s website several times over the weekend, causing a message to appear telling users it was “down for maintenance” and asking them to “please try again later”.

The previous record holder for most popular petition was 4,150,260, for a 2016 petition calling for a second referendum, should the initial poll not provide a definitive enough result.

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