The deputy leader of the Democratic Unionist Party, Nigel Dodds, asked British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to “sit down and talk” to the party after a defeat in parliament made ratification of his deal by the October 31 deadline almost impossible.
In another day of Brexit drama in the 800-year-old Westminster parliament, lawmakers handed Johnson the first major parliamentary victory of his premiership by signalling their support for his withdrawal deal in an early legislative hurdle.
But that was overshadowed just minutes later when parliament defeated him on his timetable to rush the legislation through the House of Commons in just three days.
Lawmakers voted 329 to 299 in favour of the second reading of the legislation for the deal – still no guarantee of success since the bill could be amended by lawmakers who want changes.
They then voted 322 to 308 against Johnson’s extremely tight timetable, which the government has repeatedly said is necessary to reach Johnson’s target of leaving on October 31. A DUP spokesman said the party would be voting against the programme motion.