The six Labour MPs who voted against the Benn amendment

The amendment was seen off by 314-312, so the six votes from the Opposition benches made all the difference.

In the end, Hilary Benn’s amendment was seen off by a narrow margin – 314 to 312. In that mix were six Labour MPs who voted against it:

  • Kevin Barron
  • Ronnie Campbell
  • Caroline Flint
  • Kate Hoey
  • John Mann


  • Graham Stringer

WATCH: Hoey presses Lidington on Ireland’s preparations for Brexit

“There was no mention whatsoever of any infrastructure, any hard border” in Dublin’s preparations for a WTO Brexit.

Click for full-screen.

The eight Tory MPs who rebelled to vote against the Brady amendment

The amendment passed by 317 to 301 – and seven Labour MPs rebelled to back it.

While the 1922 Committee Chairman’s amendment passed by 317 votes to 301, there was a bit of rebel-trading between the two main parties. Seven Labour MPs voted in favour of the amendment, defying their party, while eight Conservative MPs rebelled by voting against it. Uniquely tonight, one of them – Anne Marie Morris – comes not from the pro-EU end of the Parliamentary Conservative Party but from the ERG.

The eight are:

Heidi Allen

Guto Bebb

Ken Clarke

Dominic Grieve

Phillip Lee

Anne Marie Morris

Anna Soubry

Sarah Wollaston

As Paul has already recorded elsewhere on the site, the seven Labour pro-Brady rebels were as follows:

Ian Austin

Kevin Barron

Jim Fitzpatrick

Roger Godsiff

Kate Hoey

John Mann

Graham Stringer

Which Labour MPs defied their party on key amendments – including latest abstention news

The role of these MPs in pro-Leave seats abstaining on or voting against the Cooper amendment in defiance of the whip was crucial.

January 30 8.30am Mike Blanchard’s daily e-mail reports this morning the following Labour abstentions on the Cooper amendment:

  • Tracy Brabin
  • Judith Cummins
  • Gloria De Piero
  • Yvonne Fovargue
  • Mike Kane
  • Emma Lewell-Buck
  • Jim McMahon
  • Melanie Onn
  • Ruth Smeeth
  • John Spellar
  • Stephen Twigg.

Now one must be very careful with absentions, since one can’t tell whether an MP who has abstained did so deliberately or, say, was ill (as is Paul Flynn, who can be added to the list above.  Still, the names are suggestive enough to report.

21.15 Here’s the list of Labour MPs who voted for the Brady amendment.  All of them voted against the Cooper amendment.

  • Ian Austin
  • Sir Kevin Barron
  • Jim Fitzpatrick
  • Roger Godsiff
  • Kate Hoey
  • John Mann
  • Graham Stringer.

21.00: Elsewhere on this site, Mark Wallace is listing Conservative MPs who voted against the whip on important amendments.  Here is a list of 14 Labour MPs who defied their own on the Cooper amendment.

  • Iain Austin.
  • Sir Kevin Barron.
  • Ronnie Campbell.
  • Rosie Cooper.
  • Jim Fitzpatrick.
  • Caroline Flint.
  • Roger Godsiff.
  • Stephen Hepburn.
  • Kate Hoey.
  • John Mann.
  • Denis Skinner.
  • Laura Smith.
  • Gareth Snell.
  • Graham Stringer.

With the exception of Fitzpatrick and Hoey, all represent midlands and northern seats.  Most of these are in Leave-voting heartlands, though Godsiff’s Birmingham Hall Green seat plumped for Remain in 2016.

Godsiff is also on record recently as favoring a second referendum.  But the moral of this particular story is that Jeremy Corbyn should – as he is well aware – handle pressure for another poll with extreme caution.

Support for one among London Labour may catch the eye and command media coverage.  None the less, there’s a lot of resistance to a second referendum on his backbenches – and front bench too.

20.45: Earlier today, we wrote that “if the Cooper amendment falls and the Brady amendment passes, a signal will be sent to the EU that the Commons wants substantial changes to the backstop, and that the Government has re-established a degree of control over Brexit policy, at least for the moment”.

And so it has proved.  The amendment passed by 317 to 301. That’s impressive Tory discipline again.  And it will be worth looking out for the names of Labour MPs who abstained.

All in all, May’s gamble has paid off in whipping for the Brady amendment.  She can now seek to go to Brussels armed with a Commons vote for something, and perhaps with the new Malthouse Plan that is winning support across her Party.

But a happy morning will be followed by a problematic tomorrow.  The EU will be quickly out of its traps to rubbish Malthouse, Brady – and May.  As the psalm doesn’t put it: “joy may last through the night, but weeping comes with the morning”.

20.30: The Spelman amendment passes by 318 – 310.  It’s declaratory only – but the division lists will tell us which Conservative MPs have signalled clearly that they ultimately prefer No Brexit to No Deal.

20.15: The Cooper amendment fell by 321 votes to 298 – a majority of 23. We don’t have the division figures yet, but it’s clear that the role of Labour MPs was crucial.

For this result to have happened, a sufficient number of Labour MPs in pro-Brexit seats, worried that backing the amendment would be seen as a “betrayal of the referendum”, must have either voted with the Government or abstained.

The amendment would have allowed for a Bill to seek the extension of Brexit – and, rightly or wrongly, extension will be read by many as a preparation for revocation.

Conservative discipline looks – for once? – to have held up well.  Not a bad evening for Theresa May so far.  If the Brady amendment succeeds, it will become a good one.



Not yet angry – but patriotic and bewildered. Fear of betrayal is the dominant emotion at the Leave Means Leave rally

Farage urged everyone to prepare for a second referendum, and concluded: “Next time, as far as I’m concerned, it’s no more Mr Nice Guy.”

An orderly queue formed last night outside Methodist Central Hall for the Leave Means Leave rally. As we entered we were handed small Union Jacks to wave during speeches by Kate Hoey, Rocco Forte, Iain Duncan Smith, Tim Martin, Nigel Farage and Esther McVey.

The Labour people who gave out Union Jacks to the crowd which applauded Tony Blair’s entry into Downing Street in 1997 were onto something. Here is a delightful way to demonstrate patriotism.

But last night’s crowd, about 2,000 strong, rather than celebrating victory, were anxiously hoping to avert defeat.

The mood of these Brexit supporters has not yet turned angry. It is one of bewildered patriotism. For although they won the referendum, they now question whether they can trust the very politicians to whom they decided to return power.

As the man sitting next to me put it:

“I just don’t think it’s right that we have to concede a second referendum. People had a choice. They voted as they did. I think it’s right for the country to leave the EU, personally.”

He is 45 years old, has a job in insurance, and had never attended such a rally before. His tone was modest, almost apologetic, yet conveyed a sense of incredulity at the outrageous injustice which may be about to be perpetrated.

All six speakers wrestled with the paradox of a Parliament most of whose members yearn to avert Brexit, even though it gives more power to Parliament. Hoey, a Labour MP since 1989, warned that “the great betrayal has begun” and is now “moving apace”.

Richard Tice, the clean-cut Englishman, somehow reminiscent of an American evangelist, who runs Leave Means Leave and introduced the speakers, insisted “we can begin to smell” the betrayal. He urged people to chant “Let’s go WTO”.

Forte, who spoke as a businessman, said “I have not known such defeatism…by the ruling class…since the Seventies” [applause]. He described the elite’s lack of belief in the British people as  “almost treasonable”.

A heckler interrupted at this point by shouting very loudly. He was quite near to me, but I could not make out what he was saying. Forte, being somewhat inexperienced as a public speaker, fell silent, and members of the crowd started shouting “Out, out, out”.

Tice poured oil on troubled waters by saying, “We respect the right of free speech and we urge them to do the same”, for apparently there was more than one protester. The heckler near to me was ushered from the hall and someone shouted after him “At least you can leave”, which produced rueful laughter.

Duncan Smith started with some jokes, including the funny story he told when interviewed by ConservativeHome in 2013, and went on to talk of “this enormous Establishment plot” to tell us “we are a miserable little nation” and “a hopeless little island”.

He added that Parliament “doesn’t represent the British people any more”. But he and the minority of MPs who think like him “will not rest” until Britain is “fully free once again”.

Tim Martin, founder and Chairman of the Wetherspoon pub chain, bore as he came on stage a fleeting but disconcerting resemblance to the satirist Craig Brown.

Martin’s main message was “don’t believe Project Fear”. He recalled that car manufacturers said “they’d all f*ck off to the continent” if Britain didn’t join the euro.

And he reported that “if you really want to annoy people”, you should “try going into a pub in Sunderland” and asking people there if it was true they “didn’t understand” what they were voting for in the referendum.

This produced laughter of the usual good-natured yet rueful kind.

Farage received the most enthusiastic welcome of anyone: a standing ovation before he had said a word.

He walked to and fro across the front of the stage, his amplified voice painfully loud as he warned that “we tonight here in Westminster are in the heart of enemy territory”, for “our political class” never respected the referendum result “from day one”.

Theresa May’s deal with the EU “looked more like a surrender document” [applause], and was the culmination of “50 years of lies from the British Establishment”.

He fears the whole referendum battle will have to be fought all over again, urged everyone to prepare for it, and concluded: “Next time, as far as I’m concerned, it’s no more Mr Nice Guy.”

One could not help suspecting that as in the first referendum campaign, Farage being nasty could have an off-putting effect on those voters who do not already agree with him.

McVey delivered an apologia for her time in government: “We thought we could trust our MPs.” On realising last November that the Prime Minister’s deal failed to honour the referendum result, she resigned.

And that was that. The event lasted two hours, felt decorous and respectable, and can be watched on Youtube. The audience was almost entirely white, but mixed by age and sex. It wanted to feel reassured that Brexit is going to turn out fine, but none of the six speakers could set at rest the fear that Parliament is about to refuse to do what the people have voted for.

The drawback of upholding an old-fashioned belief in parliamentary sovereignty turns out to be that a majority of MPs would much rather we had remained in the EU.

The 20 Conservative MPs who voted for Cooper’s anti-No Deal Finance Bill amendment

The Government is suggesting that it will make little difference in practical terms – but opposed it for symbolic and political reasons.

  • Heidi Allen
  • Guto Bebb
  • Richard Benyon
  • Nick Boles
  • Kenneth Clarke
  • Jonathan Djanogly
  • Sir Michael Fallon
  • George Freeman
  • Justine Greening
  • Dominic Grieve
  • Sam Gyimah
  • Dr Phillip Lee
  • Sir Oliver Letwin
  • Nicky Morgan
  • Bob Neill
  • Antionette Sandbach
  • Sir Nicholas Soames
  • Anna Soubry
  • Ed Vaizey
  • Dr Sarah Wollaston

Labour’s Kate Hoey, Graham Stringer and Ronnie Campbell voted with the Government.

In technical terms, Ministers are saying that it will make little difference to the practical effects of No Deal if that happens.

In political ones, this is the first substantial anti-No Deal revolt by a coalition of Second Referendum and Norway Plus supporters.

There will be more.

The Government lost by seven votes.

WATCH: Hoey dismisses talk of No Deal as being “catastrophic” – “I don’t think so.”

“Canada Plus Plus would be very good but in the meantime, [we can] get out without paying the £39 billion.”