Boris Johnson forced to ask EU for 3rd Brexit delay after vote defeatbut writes to MPs saying Brussels could reject it


BORIS Johnson has been forced to ask the EU for a third Brexit delay after today’s vote defeat – but tonight told MPs Brussels could reject it anyway.

In a letter written to MPs the Prime Minister warned EU bosses didn’t want delay anymore than he did, urging colleagues “on all sides of the House” to push his sabotaged deal through if more delays are rejected – or face no deal.

A letter from the Prime Minister in which he insists he will not delay further
Boris Johnson has lost a crunch vote in the Commons which puts off a Brexit vote for another day
The Commons voted in favour of a rebel plot to delay Brexit yet again
Sir Oliver Letwin’s plot won a vote in the Commons

In the letter, Johnson made it clear that if Brussels neglect to give the government more time, it could have serious consequences after Tory rebel Sir Oliver Letwin blocked his new deal.

He added that he hoped face with his new deal or no deal, MPs would this time choose the latter.


In a day of high-drama in the House of Commons, MPs voted for the Tory rebels wrecking amendment by 322 to 306, and torpedoed Boris’ plans to pass a deal.

Super Saturday turned into Pointless Saturday after the Tory rebel sabotaged Boris’ Brexit bid with Parliamentary antics.

Instead the PM must now ask the EU for a THIRD time to delay Britain’s departure from the EU.

Under the Benn Act law, Boris will tonight be forced to write a letter to ask the EU for an extension until January 31.

But immediately Boris insisted he would not enter “negotiations” with Brussels over a delay, and said it was still the “best thing for the UK” to leave with his new deal on October 31.

He said: “I will not negotiate a delay with the EU and neither does the law compel me to do so.

“No delays, and I will continue to do all I can to get Brexit done on October 31.”

And in a letter to MPs revealed tonight, the PM reiterated these claims.

He wrote: “I have made clear that I do not want more delay…I will not negotiate a delay with the European Union.

The Benn Act says this is the letter Boris needs to send to the EU tonight


Johnson pointed out that as the EU leaders “have made it clear they do not want more delay” they could well reject the idea altogether.

The PM said it was his “great regret that the House has voted for more delay” – he had hoped MPs would finally back a Brexit deal, three YEARS after the public voted to leave but instead they opted for yet more dithering.

It comes as:

  • Boris vowed to press on with Brexit and introduce his Withdrawal Bill to the Commons next week
  • Hundreds of thousands of anti-Brexit protesters marched on Parliament today to call for another referendum
  • MPs had to be escorted by gangs of police to get them out of the Commons safely
  • Nigel Farage slammed the “appalling deal” in a newspaper advert
  • MPs called for extra cash to help pay for childcare after they were dragged into Parliament for a Saturday sitting

The Government decided to cancel the main Brexit vote after the plot won the day – prompting disgusted

Tory MPs to walk out of the chamber in dramatic scenes.

Ten former Tories teamed up with Labour, the Lib Dems, SNP, DUP and a spread of independents to force the plot through today. But in a boost for Boris, no current Tories rebelled.

A No10 source said immediately after the vote: “Parliament has voted to delay Brexit yet again.

“The PM will not ask for an extension – he will tell EU leaders there should be no delays, they should reject Parliament’s letter asking for a delay, and we should get Brexit done on 31 October.

A letter in which the Prime Minister insists he will not delay further

What happens next?


Boris will have to send a letter to the EU asking for a three month delay until January 31.

He may ask the Cabinet Secretary Mark Sedwill to sign it off instead.



EU ambassadors are poised to meet to discuss a Brexit extension.

Boris has said he will not enter negotiations about this – which could mean he will refuse to discuss it, or refuse to attend an emergency session of EU leaders to sign it off.

Essentially he will frustrate the process by refusing to engage with it, and in the meantime will try and push through his Brexit plans regardless.


Government brings back the Withdrawal Agreement Bill to try and push it through the Commons anyway.

A vote on Boris’ deal will happen as part of this process.

MPs will likely try and wreck it with amendments and changes to the bills, which could bog the process down and delay it further.


Britain leaves the EU?

A European Commission spokesman said it “took note” of the outcome this afternoon and was waiting for the UK to set out the “next steps”.

But MPs were furious at the prospect of yet another delay to our EU exit.

Tory MP Peter Bone raged: Im fed up. Its spoilt my birthday – I should be eating cake.

And Andrew Lewer tweeted: “I am deeply disappointed at the vote today. The overwhelming feeling in the country is to #GetBrexitDone I voted against this delaying amendment and I want to vote for the deal.”

Tory MP Daniel Kawczynsk added: “Am quietly but deeply troubled by the conduct of some MPs in their determination to prevent #Brexit. We will deliver withdrawal by October 31st despite their manoeuvres.”

Jacob Rees Mogg confirmed Parliament plans to start debating the Brexit bill on Monday in the hope of pushing the law through before Oct 31 – even if Boris sends the letter tonight.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock tweeted: “Parliament has decided for indecision so next week we’ll face a new vote for the new deal. I’ve never felt more strongly: Let’s get this done.”

But the Government fears it will now get bogged down in amendments from MPs to try and change Brexit – such as a second referendum or forcing the UK to stay in a customs union.

The DUP’s Nigel Dodds – whose 10 MPs helped push through the Remainer plot today – said he would now “examine all amendments” on the bill to protect Northern Ireland.

His extraordinary threat hints he could even back a second Brexit vote to punish Boris for abandoning his party with his deal.

But the PM still has some hope that he can get his deal through before October 31, even if he is made to seek an extension.

Before the sabotage, he had been getting closer to victory as a string of Eurosceptic Tories and Labour MPs came out to back his deal today.

Steve Baker told the ERG group after a last-minute meeting that they should vote for Boris’ Brexit deal, leading to a surge of support.

Boris blasted the Remainer plot as “deluded” and warned that further delay would be “pointless, expensive and deeply corrosive of public trust.”

And he said again he would rather be “dead in a ditch” than seek an extension.

Addressing a packed House of Commons this morning, the PM hailed his secured Brexit deal as a “new deal that can heal the rift in British politics”.

“Now is the time to get Brexit done,” he urged, telling MPs that his deal was the best one available.

Boris now faces asking the EU for another Brexit extension
MPs sat on Saturday for the first time since the Falklands War, but no deal was signed off
Jeremy Corbyn said Boris must ‘obey the law’ and seek an extension
Gove had to be accompanied by several officers to get out of Parliament safely
Andrea Leadom with a gang of police as she was led out of Parliament today
Theresa May blasted MPs for trying to block Brexit earlier

Who voted to push the Letwin plan through?

  • All 10 DUP MPs backed the plot. Without them, it would have fallen
  • 10 independent MPs (former Tories) backed Letwin -including Philip Hammond, Amber Rudd, David Gauke, Guto Bebb, Justine Greening, Nick Boles, Ken Clarke, Dominic Grieve, and Antoinette Sandbach
  • Two Tory MPs and one independent Tory did not vote/abstained – Caroline Spelman, Edward Leigh and Anne Milton
  • But no current Tories voted FOR it
  • 10 Labour MPs also defied Jeremy Corbyn to vote for the Letwin amendment or abstain on it

Thousands of Remainers flooded central London
Remainers get ready for another People’s Vote march today
Both Leave and Remain protesters are set to clash in central London