British Government found in 'Contempt of Parliament' over failure to release Brexit advice

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British MPs have found ministers of Theresa May’s government in contempt of parliament by a vote of 311 to 293. The vote, held on Tuesday, December 4, saw members of six opposing parties support a motion by the House of Commons that the government has not released all relevant legal advice.

The motion proposed that the ministers failed to comply with requirements passed by MPs on November 13 that all of the Attorney General’s legal advice on Brexit be released. The government has said due to the vote they will release the full report prior to the upcoming vote on Mrs May’s proposal on Tuesday December 11.

Labour party spokesperson Keir Stramer described the contempt finding as “a badge of shame” for the government.  However, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox stated that it had not been in the “nations best interest” to release the full document and break a longstanding convention that law officers’ advice to ministers is confidential.

MPs also passed an amendment giving parliament more influence over the proceedings if the assembly does not vote to support Prime Minister May’s Brexit proposal that was supported by members of the EU in November.  

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