All you need to know about the EU withdrawal bill before Brexit
The European Union withdrawal bill returns to the House of Commons today, Tuesday 12, and tomorrow, Wednesday 13, where the Government will debate and vote on 15 amendments.
This comes after it was put forward to the House of Lords, and Commons will now consider the proposed amendments to the Bill.
Put simply, MPs will vote on whether they should carry on with Prime Minister Theresa Mays current Brexit plan, or make it much softer.
Each debate section will be followed by voting, and is split into three parts.
There will be two three-hours debating sessions today, and one six-hour session tomorrow.
The MPs can accept or reject the proposed amendments, or propose “amendments in lieu”.
After this stage the bill will return to the Lords for peers to consider the Commons proposal.
BREXIT NEWS: The EU Withdraw bill is returning to the House of Commons
What is the EU Withdraw Bill?
The EU withdraw bill has taken 12,000 pieces of existing EU regulation, and now the process has started to decide which the government will transfer into UK law.
It repeals the European Communities Act 1972, which brought the UK into the EU in the first place.
To ensure a smooth Brexit, the existing EU legislation was copied across into domestic UK law.
Now the laws are being amended to ensure there wont be holes in the law after we leave.
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What happened to the Bill in the House of Lords?
Peers challenged the Government on 15 issues, and introduced amendments which will be debated in Commons.
The amendments were proposed for a wide range of issues, including future UK membership of the customs union and the European Economic Area (EEA).
Other amendments include the ministers use of “Henry VIII” powers to force through change without parliamentary scrutiny.
The question of whether MPs should get a “meaningful vote” on the final Brexit deal will also be debated.
The other amendments are:
• Maintaining EU environmental protections
• Enhanced security (Prevents EU law on areas such as work, health safety, etc)
• Charter of fundamental rights (Transfers EUs charter of fundamental rights into domestic law)
• Parliamentary approval for negotiations
• Child refugees (Ministers must seek agreement if an unaccompanied child refugee of a EU state wants to join relatives in the UK after Brexit)
• Northern Ireland: No changes to Irish border arrangements
• EU law can continue in UK law, and UK can stay in EU agencies
• No fixed Brexit date – subject to parliamentary approval
• Prioritise staying in the EEA
• Right to challenge a domestic law if it does not comply with general principles of EU law
• Obliges a committee to scrutinise all ministerial directives used to amend retained EU law
• Access to internal market
HOUSE OF COMMONS: The MPs will review the 15 amendments
How has the Government responded?
These amendments are seen as defeats to Theresa Mays hard Brexit law.
The Government has already accepted one of the amendments from the Lords.
This allows the UK to continue to co-operate with EU agencies.
However, Theresa Mays Government is seeking to overturn the other 14 amendments.
In some of the cases it is offering a compromise solution.
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What are the crunch votes?
The crunch votes, the most vital votes, are on whether MPs get a meaningful vote, and whether the date of Brexit should be written into law.
These crucial votes will both happen early on Tuesday afternoon.
The House of Lords proposed an amendment so if the MPs reject the final Brexit deal, they can direct ministers to go back and renegotiate.
THERESA MAY: The amendments challenge the Prime Ministers hard Brexit plan
What could the outcome of the EU withdraw bill be?
Mrs May only has a working majority of 13 in the Commons.
Even with the support of 10 Democratic Unionist Party MPs, she can be defeated by rebellion.
Around 13 Conservatives have opted for a soft Brexit amendment to the separate Trade bill.
It is now thought others may consider breaking ranks.
However, it is difficult to predict outcomes, because some Labour Leavers are thought to back the Government.
Once the MPs have voted, the bill will return to the Lords on June 18.
However, this doesnt mean it is over.
It will then bounce from House to House until eventually an agreement is reached.