BORIS Johnson’s bid for a snap general election on October 15 has failed after he suffered another heavy defeat in the House of Commons.

The vote was 298 to 56, a majority of 242 but this was 136 short of the two-thirds majority the Prime Minister needed under the Fixed Term Parliaments Act[FTPA]. Labour and the SNP abstained.

After the vote, Mr Johnson mocked Jeremy Corbyn, telling MPs: “He has become, to my knowledge, the first Leader of the Opposition in the democratic history of our country to refuse the invitation to an election.

"I can only speculate as to the reasons behind his hesitation. The obvious conclusion, I'm afraid, is that he does not think he will win.”

But in a hint he could seek a further vote to force an election, Mr Johnson issued a direct plea to Labour MPs, urging them to “reflect on the sustainability of his position overnight and in the course of the next few days".

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Earlier, a Downing St spokesman made clear that “further options” would be brought forward, noting: “If the PM can’t get the bill through Parliament because it is determined to wreck the negotiations, the only other option then is a general election.”

Party sources suggested one option was for Mr Johnson to table a motion, saying, notwithstanding the FTPA, there should be a snap election. Unlike the legislation, this would require a simple majority to be passed.

Last night Mr Corbyn firmed up his view after suggesting the party would back a snap poll once the bill to push back Brexit Day from October 31 to January 31 – passed earlier in the day – received its Royal Assent. But he later tweeted:" When no-deal is off the table, once and for all, we should go back to the people in a public vote or a general election to decide our country's future."

Earlier, Ian Blackford, the SNP leader at Westminster, said his party was “clear; once we get the bill through to prevent a no-deal Brexit, MPs must force an election before Parliament is prorogued”. This is due to happen on Monday.

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But Ian Murray, the Edinburgh South MP, warned the SNP it was "risking a no-deal Brexit by walking into a Boris trap".

He stressed a general election should not take place until the provisions of the extension bill had taken effect and the PM had been forced to ask Brussels for a Brexit delay.

“The SNP risk falling right into Boris Johnson’s trap if they back an election before October 31 and they risk a no-deal Brexit that would be disastrous for Scotland and the UK."

Jo Swinson, the Liberal Democrat leader, said: “We cannot let Boris Johnson use an election to tip the country into a dangerous no-deal Brexit…We will not support an election until Article 50 has been extended.”

MPs approved the extension bill by 327 votes to 299; a majority of 28. It then moved to the Lords.

However, peers were bracing themselves for a rare overnight sitting as they debated the so-called guillotine motion to curtail debate, to which more than 85 amendments had been submitted by mainly Brexit-backing Tory peers, including former Conservative leader Lord Howard.

Liberal Democrats peer Lord Strasburger tweeted: “This could run round the clock into the weekend."