LONDON (Reuters) - British Prime Minister Theresa May suffered a fresh Brexit setback on Monday when the speaker of parliament said any proposal she puts to lawmakers must be substantially different to the ones previously rejected by them.
Below are quotes and reaction to the ruling.
“If the government wishes to bring forward a new proposition that is neither the same, nor substantially the same as that disposed of by the House on the 12th of March, this would be entirely in order.”
“What the government cannot legitimately do is to resubmit to the House (of Commons) the same proposition or substantially the same proposition as that of last week which was rejected by 149 votes.”
“Fundamentally, for something to be different, it has to be by definition, fundamentally different. Not different in terms of wording, but difference in terms of substance and this is in the context of a negotiation with others outside the United Kingdom.”
“We’re in a major constitutional crisis here, a political crisis that we want to try and solve for the country.”
“This has given us quite a lot to think about in the immediate term. There are ways around this - a prorogation of parliament and a new session - but we are now talking about not just days but hours to the 29th of March.”
“Frankly we could have done without this, but it’s something we’re going to have to negotiate with and deal with. And I’m sure the European Council are probably watching and listening to this as well. This actually places, I think, an onus on them as well, to come up with some potential solutions that can allow the government to bring a new motion down which addresses the concerns that have been expressed across the House.”
“The speaker did not forewarn us of the content of his statement, or indeed the fact that he was making one, so I’m not in a position to give you an immediate response.”
JACOB REES-MOGG, EUROSCEPTIC CRITIC OF MAY’S DEAL
“May I say how delighted I am that you have decided to follow precedent which is something I am greatly in favour of,” said Jacob Rees-Mogg, a lawmaker May’s Conservative Party and chairman of the eurosceptic European Research Group.
“Just looking at the faces of some people, it has clearly come as a big surprise in parliament and I imagine it has in Brussels too. There is no sign of the deal being changed (by the EU) so we are probably back to a lengthy extension or more no-deal talk over the next few days.”
GEOFF YU, HEAD OF UK INVESTMENT OFFICE, UBS WEALTH MANAGEMENT
“Today’s developments don’t alter our view that uncertainty will continue to dominate over the next fortnight. We would not advise adding to long sterling positions given the multiple scenarios in play.”
“However, a no-deal Brexit is still not our base case, and the market seems to agree no-deal is limited to only a tail risk, which explains why the pound has not reacted more adversely.”
DANIELLE HARALAMBOUS, ANALYST AT ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT
“Mr Bercow’s statement was unprecedented and has more significantly limited the government’s room for manoeuvre, making it difficult to see how Mrs May can still hope to get her deal approved.”
“Mr Bercow has made the point that the government needs a new proposition to put to the House... The problem is that the government has no more leeway to alter the terms of deal in talks with the EU (not to mention no more time) and now cannot present the same motion to parliament.”
“While it was looking for a while like Mrs May had a better chance of getting her deal through, Mr Bercow’s move may have reduced this chance again, and a longer Brexit extension to pursue another plan is looking more likely.”
“The government now faces the total ruin of its strategy, as a third ‘Meaningful Vote’ — a term that becomes less meaningful with each vote — is ruled out unless changes are made. But the EU is adamant it is this deal or nothing, and as a result the PM must now, it seems, ask for a long extension.”
Compiled by Alistair Smout; Additional reporting by Josephine Mason, Guy Faulconbridge and Kate Holton; Editing by William Schomberg