Commons Vote on May’s Brexit Deal: A Short Pre-Match Analysis
Inevitable humiliation seems to be looming for Theresa May, as she will attempt to create a political gap, through which to squeeze her agreement on the 11th December.
The PM will embark upon a campaign closely resembling that of a General Election in the coming days as she attempts to persuade the nation, and most importantly MPs, that accepting her withdrawal agreement is the right path for Britain.
She has taken a Panglossian attitude and personally challenged the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, to a televised debate regarding the Brexit deal negotiated with the EU over the past two years. However, some commentators have questioned the point of this debate, as Corbyn is a natural Eurosceptic and it is, therefore, probable that he would provide much less resistance to May’s deal then a remainer or ardent Brexiteer. It would be much more valuablefor the public and MPs to hear points put forward by Anna Soubry, a stubborn rebel Tory remainer from day one; Sir Vince Cable, leader of the pro-European Liberal Democrats; David Davis, former Brexit Secretary and Brexiteer; or even Boris Johnson, the ace up the Leave Campaign’s sleeve. A debate with three sides,representing May’s deal, Remain and a hard Brexit would result in a much more entertaining and informative watch.
May has continuously denied that she would approve a so called ‘People’s Vote’ on the nature of Britain’s future relations with the EU. However, her scheduled public appearances over the next week or so would suggest otherwise. She seems to want the public on side, as well as MPs. It seems that the PM may be preparing potential scenarios were her deal to fail in the commons, a very likely outcome. After an inevitable flurry of quandary, May will most likely try to force her agreement through again, maybe with a couple of very minor adjustments. Although, if adjustments are not deemed possible or the PM does not believe that her deal will be voted down again, parliament will be in the full grips of a constitutional crisis. Consequently, the public would need to have to be consulted in some capacity. This would mean a referendum on the deal or, which, undoubtably, would be her preferred option, a General Election.
What is certain, however, is the fact that May’s chances of this deal passing through the house are looking dismal. Remainers and Brexiteers alike, the SNP, Green Party, Liberal Democrats, most Labour MPs; the DUP, the government’s ex ally who have repeatedly attacked May’s deal, including during her visit to NI on Tuesday, and some Tories, including members of the ERG and the former Defence Secretary, Sir Michael Fallon, whom has stated that her deal is ‘doomed’, have all stated that they will vote against her vision of the United Kingdom’s future relationship with the EU. Renegotiation with the EU is not a very realistic option, as the UK will leave the EU on the 29th March 2019 no matter what state the negotiating process is in. If no agreement has been reached, Britain will leave without a deal and economic matters will be deciphered by default WTO rules. Hard liners, like Rees-Mogg and Farage,suggest that this would be a reasonable outcome. It would certainly be entering the unknown, as supplies of medicine and food would be put into question.
One thing is for certain, as a study by the organisation behind a probable ‘People’s Vote’ has concluded that the UK’s GDP will shrink by 3.9%per annum and £100bn a year will be lost by 2030, the PM faces an apparent chimerical struggle, against resistance from all sides, to secure her rather prolix deal and end this perennial Brexit saga which most of the nation is simply bored to death of. If she does somehow succeed, however, it will go down as one of the most unlikely and significant peacetime political victories in modern British history.