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Alec Salmond just said in the commons that because the Brexit bill has passed its second reading without amendments that there will be no report stage and this would be the fastest passage for a bill since the defense of the realm act in WW1. My understanding is that the report stage is when legislation passed by the Commons goes to the Lords for debate and a vote. Does this mean that this Brexit bill will not go to the Lords but straight to The Queen for Royal Ascent? Does anyone know?

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Does this mean that this Brexit bill will not go to the Lords but straight to The Queen for Royal Ascent?

No. It will go to the upper house.

The draft legislation was approved by 494 votes to 122, and now moves to the House of Lords.

Brexit vote: Clive Lewis quits shadow cabinet as MPs back bill. 2017-02-08 23:00 GMT. Retrieved from BBC


The normal process is shown in the diagram below:

enter image description here

Passage of a Bill, Retrieved from Parliament.uk

So the sequence is:

  • Initial House
    • First Reading
    • Second Reading
    • Committee Stage
    • Report Stage
    • Third Reading
  • Other House
    • First Reading
    • Second Reading
    • Committee Stage
    • Report Stage
    • Third Reading
  • Consideration of Amendments (both houses, back and forth, until agreement)
  • Royal Assent (not refused since Queen Anne. 1707.)

As the above diagrams show, bills can start in either the lower or upper houses (commons or lords) and are then passed to the other house before final consideration of amendments followed by royal assent. The members of the house of commons can expedite a bill's passage through the house of commons but that just means it more quickly gets to the house of lords.

The parliament website shows current progress of the "European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill 2016-17". 2017-02-09.

Last events

  Committee stage:                      House of Commons | 08.02.2017  
  Report stage:                         House of Commons | 08.02.2017  
  3rd reading:                          House of Commons | 08.02.2017  
  1st reading (Hansard):                House of Lords   | 08.02.2017   
  1st reading (Minutes of Proceedings): House of Lords   | 08.02.2017  

Next event

  2nd reading:                          House of Lords   | 20.02.2017
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According to The Guardian,

The historic bill ... will now pass to the House of Lords, where Labour and Liberal Democrat peers will press for concessions on key issues including the status of European Union citizens living in the United Kingdom.

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Alec Salmond just said in the commons that because the Brexit bill has passed its second reading without amendments that there will be no report stage and this would be the fastest passage for a bill since the defense of the realm act in WW1.

That's not quite what he said:

The Government’s refusal to accept a single amendment means there will be no Report stage. The programme motion means there is no debate on Third Reading. I am informed by the Library that the last time that combination happened was the Defence of the Realm Act 1914, which was about the first world war.

There typically isn't a report stage when a bill comes back from a Committee of the Whole House, or if a bill returns from a public bill committee without amendment.

Bills are normally debated a final time at Third Reading - but an earlier timetable motion meant that there was no time left for this, so the House proceeded to a Third Reading vote without any further debate.

So Mr Salmond clearly wanted a further opportunity to debate the bill, but these two issues meant that that wasn't possible.

My understanding is that the report stage is when legislation passed by the Commons goes to the Lords for debate and a vote.

No; report stage:

gives MPs an opportunity, on the floor of the House, to consider further amendments (proposals for change) to a Bill which has been examined in committee...Report stage is normally followed immediately by debate on the Bill's third reading.

After third reading, the bill goes to the Lords.

Does this mean that this Brexit bill will not go to the Lords but straight to The Queen for Royal [Assent]?

No. The bill started in the Commons, so must now go to the Lords for their consideration in the normal way.

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