Boris Johnson confirms he will table a motion calling for an election (BBC News)

  • “The leader of the opposition has been begging for an election for two years,” says the PM.
  • “I don’t want an election but if MPs vote tomorrow to compel another pointless delay to Brexit then that would be the only way to resolve this.”
  • He confirms that his party will be tabling a motion for a general election.

MPs take control of the commons (BBC News)

  • MPs vote to take control of the Commons agenda tomorrow by 328 votes to 301.
  • It is the first part of their bid to stop the UK leaving the EU on 31 October without a deal.
  • The are expected to bring forward a bill tomorrow that would force PM Boris Johnson to delay Brexit unless MPs back a new deal or vote for a no-deal exit.
  • Earlier, the government lost its Commons majority after Conservative MP Phillip Lee defected to the Liberal Democrats
  • Mr Johnson has insisted the UK must leave the EU on 31 October – with or without a deal – and could call a snap October election

Tory MP defects ahead of crucial no-deal vote (BBC news)

  • Conservative MP Phillip Lee has defected to the Liberal Democrats ahead of a showdown between Boris Johnson and Tory rebels over Brexit.
  • Dr Lee, the MP for Bracknell, took his seat on the opposition benches as the PM addressed the Commons.
  • His defection meant that Boris Johnson no longer has a working majority in the House of Commons.
  • He said the government was “pursuing a damaging Brexit in unprincipled ways… putting lives and livelihoods at risk”.
  • Mr Johnson has vowed to leave the EU on 31 October with or without a deal, but a number of MPs against no deal have come together across party political lines to try to stop it happening.
  • They submitted a motion for an emergency debate to Commons Speaker John Bercow, and if successful, they will bring forward a bill that would force the prime minister to ask for Brexit to be delayed until 31 January, unless MPs approve a new deal, or vote in favour of a no-deal exit, by 19 October.

EU officials warn Boris Johnson an election win ‘changes nothing’ (The FT)

  • European officials and diplomats have warned an election victory by Boris Johnson would do nothing to strengthen his ability to extract concessions from EU member states seeking to avoid a no-deal Brexit.
  • As the UK prime minister threatened to call an early election to secure his plans for a Brexit on October 31, officials in Paris, Berlin and Brussels insisted a Conservative election win would change nothing when it came to the EU’s negotiating position.
  • A French government official said: “Our principles are not changing, and are not linked to British political life.”“I see not the merest hint of an effect on the EU institutions,” said Detlef Seif, Brexit expert of Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU parliamentary group.
  • “It’s all just domestic politics, which don’t impinge on the EU’s negotiating strategy.”

EU prepares to release disaster funds to cope with no-deal Brexit (The FT)

  • The EU is preparing to give member states access to the bloc’s disaster fund to help businesses cope with the fallout from a no-deal Brexit.
  • On Wednesday the European Commission will warn that “the short time remaining and the political situation in the UK have increased the risk” that Britain will crash out of the EU without a deal on October 31.
  • With UK prime minister Boris Johnson refusing to countenance any further delay to Britain’s departure, Brussels will assert that the EU is ready for a no-deal outcome, while at the same time urging citizens and businesses to make sure they have completed their preparations.
  • According to people familiar with the plans, Brussels will propose to siphon off money from the EU’s Solidarity Fund for natural disasters and its Globalisation Adjustment Fund for supporting laid-off workers to help countries deal with the economic consequences of a hard Brexit.

Sterling tumbles to 3-year low on rising Brexit fears (The FT)

  • Britain’s deepening political crisis has heaped further pressure on the pound, which on Tuesday morning fell to its lowest level since the “flash crash” of October 2016 as investors braced themselves for a pivotal day in parliament.
  • Sterling declined as much as 0.8 per cent to $1.197. The last time it hit such a low level was four months after the 2016 EU referendum, when it tumbled 9 per cent against the dollar before quickly rebounding.
  • The pound has not regularly traded below $1.20 since the mid-1980s.
  • Conservative rebel and former chancellor Philip Hammond predicted that MPs opposed to a no deal had the numbers to seize control of the House of Commons timetable on Tuesday to introduce legislation to force the government’s hand.

Boris Johnson open to all-Ireland food zone as backstop solution (BBC News)

  • The prime minister has suggested he is open to an all-Ireland food standards zone as part of a solution to replace the Brexit backstop.
  • Food standards are one of the most difficult border issues.
  • That is due to strict EU rules that say products from a non-member state must be checked at the point of entry.
  • If Northern Ireland was to align with the Republic of Ireland, it would effectively continue to follow EU rules.
  • That would mean that some food products coming from elsewhere in the UK would be subject to new checks and controls at Northern Ireland ports.