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Why is the Letwin Ammendment called that? I assume something Oliver Letwin did something.

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Letwin amendment is an amendment, proposed by Sir Oliver Letwin, to the parliamentary motion in response to the Statement under Section 13(4) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 made by Theresa May on March 15.

The amendment changes the rules of Parliament for a day (March 27) to allow government business to be superseded by a motion relating to Brexit. This will allow the House of Commons to hold a debate, and, subsequently, vote, on alternative Brexit outcomes without the Government intervention.

The whole text of the amendment is available on Votes and Proceedings from Monday 25 March 2019:

Amendment (a) moved, at end, add “and, given the need for the House to debate and vote on alternative ways forward, with a view to the Government putting forward a plan for the House to debate and vote on, orders that –

(a) Standing Order No. 14(1) (which provides that government business shall have precedence at every sitting save as provided in that order) shall not apply on Wednesday 27 March;

(b) precedence on that day shall be given to a motion relating to the Business of the House in connection with matters relating to the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union other than any Business of the House motion relating to the consideration by the House of a motion under Section 13(1)(b) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, and then to motions relating to that withdrawal and the United Kingdom’s future relationship with the European Union other than any motion moved under Section 13(1)(b) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018;

(c) if more than one motion related to the Business of the House is tabled, the Speaker shall decide which motion shall have precedence;

(d) the Speaker shall interrupt proceedings on any business before the Business of the House motion having precedence at 2.00 pm on Wednesday 27 March and call a Member to move that motion;

(e) debate on that motion may continue until 3.00 pm on Wednesday 27 March at which time the Speaker shall put the questions necessary to dispose of proceedings on the motion including the questions on amendments selected by the Speaker which may then be moved;

(f) when those proceedings have been concluded, the Speaker shall call a Member to move one of the other motions having precedence;

(g) any proceedings interrupted or superseded by this order or an order arising from the Business of the House motion may be resumed or (as the case may be) entered upon and proceeded with after the moment of interruption on Wednesday 27 March.".—(Sir Oliver Letwin.)

The amendment supplements the text of the motion proposed by the government:

That this House, in accordance with the provisions of section 13(6)(a) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, has considered the Written Statement titled "Statement under Section 13(4) of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018" and made on Friday 15 March 2019.

And, for a day, takes down Standing Order No. 14(1) which reads:

(1)Save as provided in this order, government business shall have precedence at every sitting.

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    Correction: it's not an amendment to the Withdrawal Act. The Government proposed a motion that said, basically "Yes, the House of Commons has received a statement from the Government, as required under Section 13 of the Withdrawal Act". The Letwin Amendment tacks on "...and here's what the House is going to do about it". – owjburnham Mar 26 at 9:19
  • @owjburnham Sorry, bad mistake on my part. I've tried to fix my answer. Thank you very much. – default locale Mar 26 at 9:52

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