Sturgeon brands Brexit vote delay ‘political cowardice’

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Nicola Sturgeon has described the Prime Minister’s decision to delay a Commons vote on her Brexit deal as “an act of political cowardice”.

The First Minister of Scotland said being “scared” of losing the vote was not a good reason to call it off.

The SNP leader also said it was time for a motion of no confidence in Theresa May’s Government, saying her party would support it.

MPs were due to have their “meaningful vote” on the PM’s Brexit deal on Tuesday, but Mrs May deferred the vote on Monday in the face of what was expected to be a significant defeat at the hands of rebel MPs.

No date has been set for when MPs will get to vote on the deal.

Ms Sturgeon told the BBC: “The decision to delay a vote that the Prime Minister insisted on having is an act of political cowardice and an abdication of responsibility.

“Just because she is scared of losing that vote is not a good reason to delay the vote.

“This is a shambles and with every day that passes right now the PM’s handling of the situation is making it an even greater shambles.

“It can’t go on like this, time is running out, the clock is ticking and I think it is time for a no-confidence motion in this Government, which the SNP would support, and it is time to give people the opportunity, in another referendum, to call a halt to this whole sorry Brexit fiasco.”

The SNP leader also issued a series of strongly worded tweets on Monday in which she described the delay as “pathetic cowardice” and blasted the UK Government’s “utter incompetence … and the contempt shown to Scotland throughout this whole sorry process”.

In a tweet to the Labour leader, Ms Sturgeon also wrote: “So @jeremycorbyn – if Labour, as official opposition, lodges motion of no confidence in this incompetent government tomorrow, @theSNP will support & we can then work together to give people the chance to stop Brexit in another vote. This shambles can’t go on – so how about it?”

Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray was one of a group of Labour politicians who have written to Mr Corbyn, urging him to push for an immediate vote of no confidence and then a fresh Brexit referendum.

He tweeted: “Following today’s farcical events by the Government, I have written with dozens of colleagues to ask Jeremy Corbyn to press a vote of no confidence this week and then go immediately for a @peoplesvote_uk.”

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