Greg Clark, the Business Secretary, has called on MPs to “come together” to prevent a no-deal Brexit as the UK Government attempts to get Labour support for its proposed way forward by considering giving extra protection to workers and the environment.

The proposals have been put forward by Labour Leave supporter John Mann and are backed by several other Labour MPs. Theresa May met some of them yesterday.

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Mr Mann told the BBC his amendment was not about supporting the Prime Minister but was about establishing Labour's own "red lines in terms of people's lives".

The Nottinghamshire MP said: "We do not want to see a Brexit where we become some kind of Singapore economy; where it is a race to the bottom, where we try to undercut everyone else and where workers lose out. What we want is to compete by being the best in the world."

Mrs May’s attempt to entice Labour waverers to back the Government Plan ahead of Tuesday’s crunch vote is not likely to see many defy Jeremy Corbyn and back her proposed way forward.

Ardent Tory Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg said it was the "right approach" for the Government to seek support in this way but he made clear that he would still be voting against its "deeply unsatisfactory" deal.

After the Government suffered two Commons defeats in the space of 24 hours, Mr Clark said it was clear there was no majority for Britain leaving the EU without a deal.

"It is my strong view that we need to come together. We need to act to avoid a no deal because I don't think there is anything remotely like a majority in Parliament that will tolerate this," he told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

"The default is in law that unless we have a deal then we will fall into no deal.
"Now is the time for Parliament to recognise this. We need to come together, we need to do a deal.

"We need to reflect on the points that are going to be made in the debates but really give expression to that determination across Parliament and conduct ourselves in the way that our reputation internationally has always been - to be pragmatic and dependable - and that means doing a deal."

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Mr Clark also suggested he would support a series of "indicative votes" in the Commons on the various options for Brexit to establish which could command a majority in the House, should Mrs May’s Plan be defeated.

"I have said in public and in discussions that to establish what Parliament wants and what Parliament supports can be a useful step," he told the Today programme.

"You need, it seems to me, to move from Parliament being just a scrutineer but to be active participants, and that means discovering Parliament's mind,” declared the Secretary of State.

"In doing so, what would very quickly be established, there is a substantial majority that absolutely does not want to see no deal."

Asked if he would resign rather than see no deal, he said: "I would always work and fight to make sure that the policy of the Government is to have a good deal, to avoid what I think would be a disaster which would be no deal."

Meanwhile, the Irish Government has rejected any suggestion that a future Stormont executive could veto aspects of the border backstop.

Simon Coveney, the Deputy Prime Minister’s, was reacting to a UK Government proposal that, if the backstop came into operation, the devolved legislature in Belfast would have to agree to any subsequent changes to EU laws impacting on it.

"Let's not forget what we are talking about here is a withdrawal agreement which is an international agreement between the UK as a whole and the EU as a whole, it isn't a bilateral agreement between Ireland and Britain.

"And so from that point of view, I don't think a Northern Ireland executive can hold a veto over the implementation of an international treaty between the UK and the EU."

Mr Coveney is in Belfast to meet politicians and business leaders to discuss the Brexit impasse.

There was confusion over whether his schedule would include a meeting with the Democratic Unionists after he claimed the party had declined an offer to hold talks.

However, DUP leader Arlene Foster swiftly responded, insisting she was willing to meet the Tanaiste.

"The party has had useful discussions with the Irish Government in the past," she said.

"I'm happy to meet with the Tanaiste later today in Belfast," she added.