Dennis Skinner defies Jeremy Corbyn to back Tory Brexit bill

This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.

Veteran MP Dennis Skinner surprised many as he broke ranks from Labour and voted for the Conservative Party’s EU Withdrawal Bill.

The Bolsover member was among seven Labour MPs who defied their party whip. His vote came as a shock to those who count him as a Jeremy Corbyn supporter.

Mr Skinner has previously flicked a V-sign at Labour rebels and reportedly claimed he had never contemplated doing “cross-party stuff”.

However, the Derbyshire politician decided to back the Government's bid to extract the UK from EU law in time for Brexit.

The bill was passed overnight by 326 votes to 290 despite critics warning that it represented a "power grab" by ministers.

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Prime Minister Theresa May gained the full support of her MPs to avoid a damaging defeat and take the next step towards Brexit.

Mr Skinner was himself a staunch supporter of Brexit during the referendum, saying it was because he wanted to escape the capitalism of the EU and protect the future of the NHS.

His Bolsover constituents voted for Brexit by a large margin. 70.8 per cent voted Leave, while 29.2 per cent voted to Remain.

Mrs May welcomed the Commons vote in the early hours of this morning, saying the bill offered "certainty and clarity" - but Labour described it as an "affront to parliamentary democracy".

The bill – which was backed by all Conservative MPs – now moves onto its next parliamentary stage.