Brexit Brief: Prime Minister’s top adviser says it is deal or delay

British Prime Minister Theresa May is braced for some uncomfortable questions in parliament on Wednesday, after one of her most senior advisers let slip plans for a possible delay to Brexit.

Chief Brexit negotiator Olly Robbins is reported to have been overheard in a Brussels bar saying that PM Theresa May will in March offer politicians a choice between her preferred form of exiting the European Union or a significant delay to the whole process.

That contradicts an official government line that the U.K. will exit EU as agreed on March 29 — with or without a withdrawal agreement in place. Robbins’ comments will likely prompt significant pushback from pro-Brexit politicians in May’s ruling Conservative Party.

Pro-European politicians from across the House of Commons, meanwhile, are putting in place their own plans to defer Brexit.

A group, led by Yvette Cooper, a member of parliament for the opposition Labour Party, on Tuesday detailed plans for an amendment to May’s Brexit deal at a scheduled parliamentary vote on February 27. If successful, it would create time for politicians to vote on a bill to delay the U.K.’s exit from the bloc.

Earlier this week, May issued a plea to U.K. politicians for more time to improve her Brexit deal: “Having secured an agreement with the European Union for further talks, we now need some time to complete that process,” she told parliamentarians.

Sterling ticked down amid the continued uncertainty, from $1.29166 at 07:50 GMT to $1.28959 at around 08:30.

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