MPs express anger during Internal Market Bill debate

Media playback is unsupported on your device                  Media caption David Cameron said he has “misgivings about what is being proposed”

The Internal Market Bill, created to govern trade within the UK's four nations, gives United Kingdom ministers powers to modify or "disapply" rules relating to the movement of goods that will come into force from 1 January, when the United Kingdom leaves the EU's single market, if a successor trade agreement is not reached.

Boris Johnson did not accept Miliband's invitation to intervene in the debate and clarify why the bill that would give the United Kingdom government the power to break worldwide law is needed.

David Cameron has joined all other living former prime ministers in expressing grave concerns about Boris Johnson's plan to override the Brexit deal and break worldwide law.

Although MPs on Monday defeated a Labour attempt to try to kill the bill, amendments have already been proposed for debate during four days of detailed scrutiny starting Tuesday. It's about exit declarations - Northern Ireland to GB - and the definition of state aid relating to Northern Ireland.

The Scottish National Party also slammed the bill, saying that it "breaks global law, attacks Scotland's democracy, threatens our NHS & public services, imposes an extreme Brexit against our will".

Later in the parliamentary debate, Miliband said of the bill: "What the Prime Minister is coming to this House to tell us today is that his flagship achievement, the deal he told us was a triumph, the deal he said was "oven-ready", the deal on which he fought and won the general election is now contradictory and ambiguous".

He said the legislation was necessary to prevent the European Union taking an "extreme and unreasonable" interpretation of the provisions in the Withdrawal Agreement relating to Northern Ireland.

Sajid Javid, Conservative MP and the previous Chancellor of the Exchequer (finance minister, in other words), had also come out against the bill, saying in a tweet that he could not see why it would be necessary to break global law in the instance of the Internal Market Bill.

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He acknowledged some personal "unease" at giving ministers powers to override the Brexit treaty but said they would not be needed if a trade deal was agreed as hoped with Brussels.

Up to 30 Tory MPs are expected to back a rebel amendment tabled by Sir Bob Neill, the chair of the justice select committee, to the bill.

"When it comes to preserving the integrity of the United Kingdom and clearly delivering for the people of Northern Ireland when it comes to the Good Friday Agreement, we've said from day one. that we would always stand by our word and not compromise when it comes to unfettered access in goods and services but also standing by the Good Friday Agreement", she said on BBC Breakfast.

Cox, previously a strong supporter of Johnson on Brexit, said he wouldn't support the proposal when the House of Commons takes its first vote on the contentious legislation later Monday.

Meanwhile, Labour leader Keir Starmer announced that he is isolating after a family member showed possible signs of Covid-19 infection.

But opposition Labour spokesman Ed Miliband ridiculed this suggestion, saying: "Either he wasn't straight with the country about the deal in the first place or he didn't understand it".

"It is critical that we pass this Bill before the end of the year".

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