With a year to go until the Brexit deadline, the UK Prime Minister is facing strong criticism of her handling of Britain’s planned departure from the European Union.
Prime Minister Theresa May is facing an angry backlash’s over her decision to appoint nine new Tory peers, including several ex-Cabinet ministers, to the House of Lords upper chamber of parliament, despite an earlier pledge to end the practice, The Independent wrote.
Critics say the move flies in the face of Theresa May’s claims that politicians should not be granted automatic ennoblement and is an attempt by the prime minister to bolster her support in the Lords.
Even though the arrival of new Peers is set to increase the Conservatives’ presence in the House of Lords, Laborites and Liberal Democrats will still have 35 more members there.
The row follows a series of embarrassing defeats the peers inflicted on the government over Brexit.
“This is a desperate grab for power by a regime losing its grip on parliament, public opinion and even its own back benches. The Prime Minister is running scared of the mounting criticism of her disastrous handling of Brexit,” Liberal Democrat leader in the Lords, Dick Newby, said.
“These appointments show the PM isn’t serious about reforming the Lords and smacks of hypocrisy,” he added.
The Scottish National Party’s spokesman in the House of Lords, Tommy Sheppard, slammed the decision as a “real affront to democracy”.
“By creating even more peers in a desperate attempt to force through their chaotic Brexit they are showing a despicable disregard. Even for the Tories this is shabby.’’
Theresa May has faced opposition from hardline Brexiteers in her government and beyond throughout Brexit negotiations with Brussels, with some questioning her ability to lead Britain in its withdrawal from the European Union.
London and Brussels have been negotiating the terms of Britain’s exit since June 2017.
Britain is expected to leave the European Union on March 29, 2019, but London has been seeking a two-year transition period to smooth out the exit, as well as guarantees of a future relationship with the bloc.