MPs from all parties stood in opposition to the deal – voting it down 432 to 202 – the biggest defeat by any UK prime minister in history. The result was widely anticipated and, on the night, it came down to how big a loss May would suffer.
Although the result was met with cheers from both the pro- and anti-Brexit campaigners gathered outside parliament, it creates more uncertainty as the country drifts steadily towards the 29 March.
And a no-deal scenario is not yet fully off the table.
May now has three days to present an alternative to parliament.
So, where does this leave the crown dependencies and Gibraltar?
Jersey’s minister for external relations, Ian Gorst, has confirmed plans that “officials from across [Jersey’s] government will undertake a table-top exercise […] to test our planning assumptions and to undertake a simulated no-deal scenario”.
“Until an agreement is reached, the default position remains that the United Kingdom will leave the EU on 29 March with no deal,” Gorst said.
“The key risks we are considering include supply chair disruption and impacts on our critical national infrastructure. The government of Jersey continues to work closely with the UK government to ensure our plans align.”
He concluded: “I believe that our planning, and the testing of those plans, puts us in the strongest position in the event of a no-deal Brexit.”
Prepping for all eventualities
The chief minister of Gibraltar, Fabian Picardo, said that “the depth of feeling against [Theresa May’s] withdrawal agreement, as a whole, has long been clear”.
He added: “There is a lot at stake for Gibraltar. I have already been in touch with a number of colleagues in parliament, in all parties.
“Next week, I will jointly chair a meeting of the UK/Gibraltar joint ministerial committee on Brexit. I will meet with the chairpersons of most of the House of Commons select committees, who make up the liaison committee of the commons.
“We will continue to prepare Gibraltar for all potential eventualities,” Picardo said.
Declining to add to an earlier statement about its preparedness for Brexit, the government of Guernsey reiterated a statement released on 9 January.
“In the event that the withdrawal agreement and political declaration are not accepted by the House of Commons (a potential no-deal scenario) on 15 January, then the policy and resources committee intends, instead, to make a statement at the States meeting on 30 January.
“It will be liaising closely with the UK government throughout this time. This approach will enable the committee to take all the latest developments into account, before updating the States, as the situation will continue to unfold after the date of the meaningful vote.”
The Guernsey government said that “this approach demonstrates that, whilst we hope for an orderly exit by the UK, we have planned and are ready to respond to all eventualities”.
Assessing the situation
Isle of Man chief minister Howard Quayle commented that the island “has been making preparations for various eventualities for some time and we are working across all areas of government, with industry and the UK government to understand and mitigate for different scenarios”.