Lords Brexit Bill debate live: Second day of Peers discussing Article 50 legislation

Follow updates throughout the day as the upper chamber discusses the Government's EU withdrawal plans

Jon Stone
Political Correspondent
,Ashley Cowburn
Tuesday 21 February 2017 10:37 GMT
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Prime Minister Theresa May sits behind the speaker (top right) as Baroness Smith of Basildon speaks in the House of Lords, London, during a debate on the Brexit Bill
Prime Minister Theresa May sits behind the speaker (top right) as Baroness Smith of Basildon speaks in the House of Lords, London, during a debate on the Brexit Bill (PA wire)

Welcome to The Independent’s live blog on the second day of debates in the House of Lords.

The Brexit Bill allowing Theresa May to trigger Article 50 is being debated in the House of Lords. Two days have been set aside for the European Union (Notification Of Withdrawal) Bill's second reading debate - the first time the upper chamber has been given a chance to debate the legislation.

Here are the latest updates:

Welcome to The Independent’s live blog on the second day of debates in the House of Lords. On the first day of the debates Theresa May took the highly unusual step of attending the Lords session in person, watching from the steps of the Queen’s golden throne.

The Prime Minister’s spokesperson told journalists that Ms May was sitting on the steps “in recognition of the importance of this bill as it proceeds through the Lords”. Asked whether Ms May was seeking to intimidate peers he said the Government “holds the House of Lords in the highest regard”. Ms May is entitled to attend the chamber by virtue of her membership of the privy council.

Peers are again expected to debate late into the night on Tuesday. The twin late-night sittings follow similar episodes in the House of Commons earlier this month, with MPs queuing to speak on the subject. Lords are not expected to actually vote on the bill until next week at the earliest.

Labour’s leader in the upper house, Baroness Angela Smith, told her colleagues that it would be “irresponsible” to “merrily wave the Government off to negotiate our future without parliamentary engagement or accountability”.

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