Dozens of MPs have insisted that any deal must give them the opportunity to vote on new restrictions – such as fines and movement controls to curb the spread of the coronavirus – not just debate it.The rebels will meet with government whips ahead of a vote on the 2020 coronavirus law renewal. Brady submitted an amendment to the law, signed by 52 MPs and said he is supported by many others, but said he was “still hoping” that a deal would be completed.
Government sources and constitutional experts believe the amendment is unlikely to be selected by President Sir Lindsay Hoyle, thwarting the rebellion via the amendment – but meaning some MPs could vote against renewing the law itself.
If Brady’s amendment was not selected, there would not be enough support to reject the renewal of the law – something Labor would be very unlikely to support.
A last-minute offer in compromise could come directly from Health Secretary Matt Hancock to the shipping box during the House of Commons debate on Wednesday, sources on both sides said.
It is understood that both parties are examining the use of the Statutory Instrument (SI) procedure, which would normally be used to bring into force or modify a power already granted to a government by an act of Parliament, to see if this mechanism could give more weight to parliament. .
When a change is urgently needed, the government can use a mechanism called ‘affirmative IFs’ which gives them powers immediately – although they can be revoked if they are not approved by parliament within a period of time. defined, usually 28 or 40 days, although the time frame could be shortened.
MPs hope the scale of support for the rebellion can force ministers to reconsider whether the coronavirus law needs to be renewed a second time in six months or whether new legislation should be considered to replace it.
Steve Baker, who is also the spearhead of the rebellion, said: “I hope it can expire within six months. If we had to do it [legislate for the same measures] again, it is impractical to expect this to happen before Christmas. This is my personal reflection on the direction of the journey now. I have established a benchmark on this. ”
In a speech on Tuesday, Boris Johnson urged MPs to support the renewal of the law, reiterating his promise of more general coronavirus debates in parliament and the possibility of questioning government science advisers. “They will have, as I know they all wish, the opportunity to talk about these issues, to debate them properly and to discuss them as parliamentarians should,” he said.
The mood for MPs was gloomy on Tuesday, especially after news broke that the government had created a litany of new pandemic-related offenses, including fines for playing music too loudly or allowing an employee to continue working whether it should be isolated.
Former ministers including Damian Green and Bernard Jenkin were among 25 Tory MPs who attended a one-hour meeting in Parliament, hosted by Baker, the former chairman of the European Research Group, which organized the opposition to Theresa May’s Brexit deal.
“It was the darkest meeting I think I have ever attended, and people know what meetings I have attended,” he said. “It also contained people from the broadest cross-section of the party… people know that the lives and livelihoods of their constituents are at stake and there is nothing they can do about it. That is just not what they came here for.
“One of our colleagues just told the story of a voter who has a four-month-old child to feed and he looks at his deputy and says to himself: it’s the government, what will he do next week? The rule of law certainty that you will be able to make a living next week is gone.
“People are waiting for press conferences and press releases to find out if they can feed their children next week. And it’s absolutely terrible, it’s shocking. And this disease, I’m afraid, in the minds of many colleagues, does not warrant such a horrific response.
Another senior Conservative MP present at the meeting said: “The government… knows it has to do something because the numbers [of rebels] are substantial. We have had more heartache about this than anything since the Brexit summit. “