After defeat in the House of Commons on Tuesday, Theresa May faces a vote of “no confidence” tonight.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn tabled the motion after the Prime Minister suffered the worst defeat in British political history with the meaningful vote on the Brexit deal.
The Government’s draft Withdrawal Agreement was voted down by MPs by 432 to 202 against the deal – a defeat of 230.
“She cannot seriously believe that after two years of failure, she is capable of negotiating a good deal for the people of this country,” Corbyn told the house following the result.
“The most important issue facing us is that the government has lost the confidence of this House and this country. I therefore Mr Speaker inform you I have now tabled a motion of no confidence in this government.”
Here’s what time the vote of ‘no confidence’ is likely to happen, where to watch it, and how it will work.
When will it happen?
The vote of ‘no confidence’ will take place on Wednesday 16 January – the day after May’s catastrophic failure in Parliament. Ms May has agreed to giving a “substantial part of the day” to debates on the motion.
The vote itself is likely to take place around 7pm.
How will it work?
A vote of “no confidence” is a mechanism that can be used by MPs to announce that they have lost faith in the Government and demand a new Prime Minister.
Under the Fixed Term Parliament Act (2011) brought in by David Cameron, if the motion succeeds then Parliament will have 14 days to find a government that the majority has confidence in. If a government cannot be formed in that time frame, then parliament is dissolved and an early general election will be triggered.
What is likely to happen?
The Prime Minister looks set to win the vote following assurances from Brexit rebels the ERG and the Northern Irish DUP that they will not vote against the government during the motion on Wednesday.
If this prediction is accurate, then we await a “plan B” withdrawal agreement from the government on Monday.
This could involve a request for an extension of Article 50, the legal trigger for Brexit, in order to return to the EU and negotiate changes to the draft deal.
“If the House confirms its confidence in this Government I will then hold meetings with my colleagues, our Confidence & Supply partner the DUP and senior Parliamentarians from across the House to identify what would be required to secure the backing of the House,” Ms May said in the Commons.
“The Government will approach these meetings in a constructive spirit, but given the urgent need to make progress, we must focus on ideas that are genuinely negotiable and have sufficient support in this House.
Third, if these meetings yield such ideas, the Government will then explore them with the European Union.”