Po­lit­i­cal cri­sis deep­ens with LABOUR & TORIES UNITE TO STOP BREXIT Cor­byn’s plan to re­voke Ar­ti­cle 50

Six-month work rule

The People - - News Features - Nigel Nel­son PO­LIT­I­CAL ED­I­TOR

ASY­LUM seek­ers could be al­lowed to work af­ter six months here.

A cross-party group is tabling an amend­ment to the Im­mi­gra­tion Bill, which comes be­fore the Com­mons on Wed­nes­day.

It will have the sup­port of Labour, the SNP and Lib Dems, plus some Tories – in­clud­ing for­mer Cab­i­net min­is­ters Nicky Morgan and Caro­line Spel­man.

Stephen Hale, of Refugee Ac­tion, said: “We are very op­ti­mistic. Giv­ing peo­ple seek­ing asy­lum the right to work, earn a liv­ing and re­build their lives is long over­due.”

Lib Dem Chris­tine Jar­dine added: “Be­ing de­nied the right to work is cruel and undig­ni­fied.”

Home Sec­re­tary Sa­jid Javid has also sig­nalled he is sym­pa­thetic.

But MPS want him to go fur­ther than just let asy­lum seek­ers take jobs on the short­age oc­cu­pa­tions list – which in­cludes po­si­tions like bal­let dancers and geo­physi­cists. Un­der the present sys­tem peo­ple seek­ing asy­lum are only al­lowed to work if they have waited more than 12 months for a de­ci­sion on their claim. The Home Of­fice aims to process claims within six months but 48 per cent

go be­yond. LABOUR is pre­pared to unite with Tory Re­main­ers to sab­o­tage Brexit.

And a highly- placed No10 source said: “No Brexit is now more likely than No Deal.”

Theresa May is pin­ning her hopes on an 11th-hour prom­ise from the EU to­mor­row that the con­tro­ver­sial Ir­ish back­stop will only be tem­po­rary.

But as the EU as­sur­ance will not be legally bind­ing the PM faces cer­tain de­feat when her with­drawal deal comes be­fore the Com­mons for Tues­day’s vote.

Tory Brex­i­teers pre­dict she will lose by more than 200, while No10 is pray­ing the re­bel­lion can be kept to dou­ble fig­ures.

Jeremy Cor­byn hopes to force a Gen­eral Elec­tion by win­ning a no-con­fi­dence vote in the Gov­ern­ment.

But Tory loy­al­ists, rebels and the DUP will bury their dif­fer­ences to see the Labour leader off. Mrs May told the Sun­day Ex­press: “I face a Labour leader more con­cerned with play­ing pol­i­tics than act­ing in the best in­ter­ests of our coun­try. He wants to reck­lessly sow the seeds of di­vi­sion in a bid to boost his own ca­reer.”

Plan B for Mr Cor­byn is to stop the night­mare of No Deal which would be the con­se­quence of MPS con­sign­ing May’s EU con­tract to the shred­der.

That means form­ing a united front with Tory Re­main­ers, the SNP and Lib Dems to re­voke Ar­ti­cle 50, which takes us out of the EU on March 29.

The Par­lia­men­tary process for scrap­ping it is opaque, but both Tory and Labour high com­mands be­lieve it is achiev­able. A Labour source said: “That is the di­rec­tion this is now head­ing in.”

One Tory added: “MPS now have just 48 hours to save Brexit.”

The EU says the deal on the ta­ble is the only one on of­fer. And its lead­ers would be de­lighted if the UK ditched Brexit.

A se­nior White­hall source said: “All the EU has to do is sit on its hands while we tear our­selves apart.”

Even if Mrs May mirac­u­lously won the vote, Ar­ti­cle 50 might still have to be post­poned.

There are doubts if six es­sen­tial pieces of Brexit leg­is­la­tion and 300 smaller changes can be rail­roaded through Par­lia­ment in the 75 days left be­fore we leave. MPS have been warned by No10 that if they try to hold Bills up, the Com­mons will sit seven days a week and they will lose next month’s half-term hol­i­day. A No10 source said: “We will do all it takes to get leg­is­la­tion through in time.”

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