Downing Street looks set to ignore parliamentary sovereignty after MPs demanded to see communications between ministers and officials over the prorogation of parliament.
MPs voted by 311 to 302 in favour of Number 10 handing over communications – including WhatsApp, Facebook and text messages – surrounding plans to suspend parliament, as well as the Operation Yellowhammer documents surrounding a no-deal Brexit.
The motion – which was tabled by former attorney general and Tory MP Dominic Grieve – set a deadline of Wednesday at 11pm but it looked like it was unlikely to cooperate.
A government source told the MailOnline: “Dominic Grieve can f*** off.”
Grieve responded by telling the website: “I hope they go away and weigh up the implications very carefully. We will cross that bridge if we get to it.”
It looks like the matter will end up in the courts as government lawyers consider the legality and implications of the vote.
Existing attorney general Geoffrey Cox asked what legal right the government would have to require its employees to “give up private email accounts and personal mobiles”.
Grieve, however pointed out that “these are government employees and in the course of their work it is their duty to observe the civil service code and to comply with its requirements”.