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  1. ITV Report

Carlisle MP plays key role in government's first defeat over Brexit legislation

Conservative MP John Stevenson Photo: ITV Border

Carlisle's MP has played a key role in the government's first defeat over Brexit legislation after a last-ditch concession failed to quash a Tory rebellion.

Conservative John Stevenson defied his party's whip to vote in both the ayes and noes lobby - which is considered a way of registering a formal abstention.

The result was announced as 309 votes to 305 in support of the proposal from Conservative former attorney general Dominic Grieve.

His amendment means any Brexit deal now needs to be approved by a separate Act of Parliament before it could be implemented.

Eleven Tories backed the amendment, including Mr Grieve and former chancellor Ken Clarke.

The other rebels were: Heidi Allen (South Cambridgeshire), Jonathan Djanogly (Huntingdon), Stephen Hammond (Wimbledon), Sir Oliver Heald (North East Hertfordshire), Nicky Morgan (Loughborough), Bob Neill (Bromley and Chislehurst), Antoinette Sandbach (Eddisbury), Anna Soubry (Broxstowe) and Sarah Wollaston (Totnes).

In an interview with ITV Border, John Stevenson said:

I decided that I was going to support Amendment 7 because I felt it is absolutely right and proper that at the end of the negotiations our parliament has a final say on approving the new agreement that we will have with the EU, so that is why I decided to support that amendment."

– MP John Stevenson

The people of Carlisle voted 60-40 in favour of Brexit. John commented on whether or not he feels his vote goes against their wishes:

Absolutely not. In the referendum we voted to leave the EU and that is the mandate from the British people and it is certainly one that I will be supporting throughout."

– MP John Stevenson