March 29th is approaching, slowly but surely. That’s the date when Brexit will take effect barring some extraordinary action by the British Parliament. And as things stand right now, it will be a No Deal Brexit, leading to all manner of confusion while things are sorted out.
So how do the British people feel about this turn of events? A new Sky Data poll reveals a nation that’s just as divided and lacking in workable plans as their elected representatives. The people don’t like what’s happening with Brexit right now, but they also don’t want to reverse course. It’s a bit of a pickle, as they say across the pond. (Sky.com)
Some 56% said they were opposed to another public vote on whether the UK should leave the European Union, compared to 44% who support the proposal…
After Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called on Mrs May to rule out the prospect of a “no-deal” Brexit, the Sky Data poll found the majority of Britons (54%) oppose the UK leaving the EU without a deal.
The survey also revealed Britain is divided on whether the government should delay Brexit beyond the planned leave date of 29 March.
Half (50%) of those asked said they would support a delay, while half (50%) said they opposed the idea.
The Remainer coalition appeared to have been counting on their fellow citizens eventually growing so disgusted with the entire Brexit debacle that they would eventually support a second referendum, presumably deciding to stick with the EU by a narrow margin. This poll seems to throw cold water on the idea. The only reason for Brits to support another vote would be if they wanted a different outcome and a slim majority don’t feel that way.
But at the same time, a similar majority is opposed to going through with Brexit without a better deal than the one Theresa May crafted with the EU. These two positions are directly contradictory to each other. It’s understandable that the voters would like a more favorable set of conditions before leaving, but that decision isn’t in their hands. The way the European Union has crafted its rules, the EU Parliament has to agree to whatever the deal winds up being crafted and they’ve made it very clear that they don’t intend to compromise.
Are there any other options left? Well… sort of. The Prime Minister did push forward a revised plan this week, but it’s not significantly different from the old one and it landed pretty much with a thud. (WaPo)
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Monday spelled out a “Plan B” for Brexit that appeared very much like a warmed-over version of her Plan A, which suffered a crushing defeat in Parliament last week…
May refused to rule out a no-deal Brexit — the possibility that Britain leaves the E.U. without a deal on March 29, resulting in the halting of trade and travel and general chaos.
May reiterated her opposition to delaying Brexit beyond the March 29 deadline, saying that an extension to allow more parliamentary debate would be “simply deferring the point of decision” — and likely would not be agreed to by the other 27 members of the E.U.
Most of the issues concerning trade and migration aren’t going to change at all because the EU is in no mood to deal. The only spot where Theresa May might score enough of a victory to get this thing over the finish line is if she can finalize an agreement on the so-called “Irish backstop.” That’s the plan to ensure that there isn’t a new hard border in Ireland after they exit the EU. The removal of that border was one of the key features of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement that brought an end (well… mostly) to “the troubles” in Ireland.
If May can secure that arrangement, it might convince enough of the MPs to hold their noses and swallow the rest of the deal she negotiated. But that’s still not a sure thing. The only reality we can definitely identify at this point is that Great Britain has lived to see interesting times and the ride is far from over.