Theresa May will embark on a tour of the UK today to sell her Brexit deal to the country and put pressure on MPs to back her.
The prime minister faces an uphill struggle to get the negotiated withdrawal agreement and political declaration through the Commons in the so-called “meaningful vote” next month.
This has been scheduled for December 11 and between then and now the Tory leader will try to build support for what she yesterday described as the “right deal for Britain”.
In a sign she intends to appeal directly to voters, Mrs May said parliamentarians had a “duty” to listen to their constituents before taking their decision in the national interest.
To that end, she is today visiting Northern Ireland and Wales and will be in Scotland later this week.
But her spokesman declined to confirm or deny reports that Number 10 is considering a possible TV debate with Jeremy Corbyn.
In a statement to MPs yesterday, Mrs May said there was no better deal available.
She added: “Our duty as a parliament over these coming weeks is to examine this deal in detail, to debate it respectfully, to listen to our constituents and decide what is in our national interest.
“We can back this deal, deliver on the vote of the referendum and move on to building a brighter future of opportunity and prosperity for all our people or this House can choose to reject this deal and go back to square one.”
But Mr Corbyn said the government had “never got beyond square one”, adding: “Ploughing on is not stoic; it is an act of national self-harm.”
And SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford called it a deal “full of ifs and buts”.
He also accused the prime minister of a “blatant disregard” for the “rights that we will all lose to live and work in Europe”.
Ahead of her Wales and Northern Ireland visit, Mrs May said: “Having been told by the EU that we would need to split the UK in two, we are leaving as one United Kingdom.
“My deal delivers for every corner of the UK and I will work hard to strengthen the bonds that unite us as we look ahead to our future outside of the EU.”