Theresa May survives another crucial Brexit vote, but only just

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The government was widely expected to be defeated on the rebel trade bill amendment which could have forced May to try to keep Britain in a customs union with the EU if no agreement had been reached on frictionless trade by January 21, 2019. Their mutiny came 24 hours after Mrs May caved in to hardline Tory Eurosceptics to back an amendment which critics says effectively kills off her compromise Brexit Chequers plan.

Their significance was highlighted in a surprise defeat for the government on only their second piece of Brexit legislation, with MPs voting 305 to 301 on a rebel amendment that would lead to the United Kingdom remaining under European Union medicines regulation.

Hoey was among four Labour MPs who helped Theresa May stay in power by voting with the Government on customs so her key Brexit legislation could survive.

"There was some minor relief into end of day as the PM narrowly succeeded in avoiding efforts to tie her hands, though there needs to be a lot more achieved on the PM's side right now to reduce all of the stress that has arisen in recent weeks".

Speaking on Sky News, Ms Dorries explained what would have happened if the customs union amendment had been passed on Tuesday evening.

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Smith threatened Tory MPs that if the vote was lost, the outcome would be a general election, with the prospect of a Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour government.

On Monday, May infuriated Conservative lawmakers who want to keep the closest possible ties with the European Union when she chose to accept a number of demands by hardline pro-Brexit MPs from her party.

On Monday, May gave in to Tory hardliners by accepting four amendments to the bill, underpinned by her Brexit white paper, meant to toughen up her negotiating stance.

Mrs May said she looked forward to hearing from cross-border businesses about Brexit.

An amendment that would stop the United Kingdom from joining the EU's Value-Added Tax regime saw 11 Conservative rebels.

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Theresa May came within six votes of the possible collapse of her government as MPs narrowly rejected an amendment to trade legislation that could have forced the United Kingdom to stay in the EU customs union.

It is a long-standing parliamentary convention that ministers who quit the cabinet are given the opportunity to address the House to explain their reasons for doing so.

While the amendment passed through the Commons without a vote, two other amendments tabled by Tory Brexiteers scraped through by just three votes.

There is also speculation that former foreign secretary Boris Johnson could deliver a resignation speech.

On Monday (16 July), the other wing of May's Conservative Party - those MPs who want to keep the closest possible ties with the European Union after Brexit - spoke up in the voice of former education minister Justine Greening who called for a second referendum.

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The commission said Vote Leave had exceeded its spending limit of 7 million pounds ($12 million) by funnelling 675,315 pounds through a pro-Brexit youth group called BeLeave. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson said: "We are very content for Parliament to meet next week on Monday and Tuesday and had planned accordingly".

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