LABOUR is to vote against the Brexit repeal Bill at its second reading this week to prevent ministers being able to “grab power from Parliament” to change laws without scrutiny.
The party hopes that taking a stand against the “Henry VIII powers” will split the Tories when MPs vote on the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill during the fi rst stage of its passage through the Commons, which begins tomorrow.
Remainers among the Conservatives signalled that they will not vote against the Bill over the next week but could rebel at later stages.
Senior Tories also have warned against the powergrab plans, which could cause problems for Prime Minister Theresa May.
A Labour spokesman said: “Nobody voted in last year’s referendum to give this Conservative government sweeping powers to change laws by the back door.
“The slogan of the Leave campaign was about people taking back control and restoring powers to Parliament. This power-grab Bill would do the opposite.”
Labour’s announcement followed a meeting of the shadow cabinet yesterday morning, hours before Brexit Secretary David Davis made a Commons statement about the negotiations in Brussels.
Mr Davis claimed that the government would “intensify” the frequency of the negotiation session, in the wake of complaints by the EU side that recent talks have failed to deliver “decisive” progress.
Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said the current state of affairs and the slow progress so far were a “real cause for concern” because withdrawal from the EU without a deal could be a possibility by the last stage of the talks next month.
Mr Davies accused Mr Starmer of failing to acknowledge that the EU was using “pressure tactics” to make Britain pay a hefty exit penalty, insisting that the government was acting in the best interests of taxpayers.