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May says Britain will not compromise over Brexit plan

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British Prime Minister Theresa May said she would not compromise with Brussels over her plans for Brexit as a media report said rivals in her party were set to publish their own proposal calling for a cleaner break with the European Union.

With under two months before Britain and the EU want to agree a deal to end over 40 years of union, May is struggling to sell what she calls her business-friendly Brexit to her own party and across a divided country.

The EU has tentatively welcomed what has become known as the Chequers plan which is designed to protect cross-border trade, but difficult negotiations lie ahead.

"I will not be pushed into accepting compromises on the Chequers proposals that are not in our national interest," May wrote in the Sunday Telegraph newspaper.

"The coming months will be critical in shaping the future of our country and I am clear about my mission."

The plan would keep Britain in a free trade zone with the EU for manufactured and agricultural goods. But some Brexit supporters have said that would mean parts of the British economy would still be subject to rules set in Brussels.

Two of May's most senior lawmakers - Boris Johnson and David Davis - quit as foreign secretary and Brexit secretary respectively in July in protest at May's plan, saying it did not go far enough and would let down the millions of people who voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum.

According to a report in the Sunday Times newspaper, leading Brexiteer lawmakers in May's party are ready to publish their own plan for Brexit ahead of the party's annual conference which begins at the end of September.

That would be designed to heap pressure on May who needs to get any deal with Brussels through parliamentary votes in Westminster before Britain is due to leave the EU on March 29 next year.

May reiterated that Britain would be ready to leave the EU without a deal if the two sides cannot agree on the divorce terms.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2018.

©2018 GPlusMedia Inc.

10 Comments
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Second referendum now !

Undo the insanity of 2016, both sides of the pond.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@Madverts

That will probably happen if they are smart. However, Boris might try to swoop in and grab insanity from the jaws of common sense.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@Madverts

Brexit was the biggest vote in the history of British democracy, and it was confirmed a year later in the general election when the vast majority of votes went to parties that support Brexit. Brexit is the clear opinion of the majority of voters.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Brexit was the biggest vote in the history of British democracy, and it was confirmed a year later in the general election when the vast majority of votes went to parties that support Brexit. Brexit is the clear opinion of the majority of voters.

It was a lot more complicated than that. The most pro-Brexit party is UKIP, who were wiped out in the local elections earlier in the year (2017), and never do well in general elections anyway.

Despite calling the election with the express purpose of increasing their majority to give Theresa May a stronger position in negotiations with the EU, the Conservatives actually lost their majority and had to hastily cobble together a coalition with the usually irrelevant (outside NI) and widely disliked DUP. The Tories also came very close to losing to Labour outright.

Both Conservative and Labour increased their share of the vote (42.4% and 40% respectively), meaning the two main parties took over 80% of the overall vote. As there are pro and anti Brexit members (up to Cabinet level) in both parties, the picture is extremely mixed; as a matter of pragmatism though, members of both parties who originally wanted Britain to remain in the EU accept that following the referendum they are more or less obliged to go through with Brexit. One such person was Theresa May; as to Jeremy Corbyn, no one seems to really know. During the runup to the referendum, he stated that he was "seven to seven and a half out of ten" in favour of remaining. You could interpret that as pro-remain, I suppose; you could just as easily interpret it as "not really bothered either way", which wasn't a category on the referendum ballot paper.

https://i1.wp.com/www.activatingdemocracy.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Brexit-ballot-paper.jpg?resize=768%2C549&ssl=1

And since the referendum, the general appetite for Brexit (among the British population) has dwindled as it becomes clearer what this is going to mean for the country. Due to the shambolic state of the negotiations, that is often "unclear but definitely not good". On the Brexit side, the promises about great new trade deals and the like have failed to materialize, the original proponents have failed to stand by what they said, and superficially attractive concepts like the slashing of red tape have turned out to be false, because there are so many areas in which we will have to make parallel laws and regulations - to replace those we have now under the EU, but won't have once we leave it.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

May has said a second referendum would be a "betrayal of trust". I don't understand her reasoning: we have general elections every 4-5 years, nobody suggests that there should only ever be one election and the result should be unchanged for ever because that was "the will of the people". People change their minds, so new votes are necessary.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

May has said a second referendum would be a "betrayal of trust". 

Having announced to the EU (and the world) that we're leaving, we don't have a lot of choice about going through with it. One thing we should learn from though: if we ever have a referendum of such importance again, it should be made explicitly clear beforehand what a "yes" result entails: in other words, is it binding, does it require a specific majority, etc. The handwringing after the last referendum was ridiculous. You can't just say wrong answer, let's rerun it until we get the right one. We're now shackled to an underwhelming 52-48 result in favour of Brexit that probably no longer even reflects the public will, and several generations will be paying the price.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@wipeout

Both Conservative and Labour increased their share of the vote (42.4% and 40% respectively), meaning the two main parties took over 80% of the overall vote. 

Indeed. Both parties stood on a programme of respecting the referendum result and their share of the votes went up. The Liberal Democrats (a centre mainstream party, for anyone reading this not familiar with them) stood in the 2017 election on an anti-Brexit manifesto and their share of the vote went down.

Given the result of both the 2016 referendum and the 2017 election, it is undeniable that the democratic choice of the British people is for Brexit, and it would be a mockery of democracy to force the country to keep re-running the vote.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@wipeout

What price is that?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

What price is that?

Loss of trade, loss of jobs, loss of influence, loss of protections, loss of freedom to live and work in EU countries.

Here's an example reported today:

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/sep/02/britain-loses-medicines-contracts-as-eu-body-anticipates-brexit

Of course you might be tempted to say well that's just a medicines agency, but it's an example of loss of influence as well as loss of jobs. And it's self-inflicted damage.

In some regions, the largest employer has mentioned the possibility of leaving the UK, two I can think of are Airbus and Nissan. Again, some people are openly skeptical about that, but these companies are both in areas where industry was decimated in the 1980s. It happened across the midlands and the north, and as well as Wales and Scotland. Factories like that represented a second chance in areas devastated by unemployment and loss of their core industries.

Obviously as we don't even know for sure yet whether freedom of movement is to be terminated, and in fact don't seem to know much else about the terms of exit, it's impossible to say what the price will be, but it is possible to predict with some confidence that either way there will be a lot of negative consequences for Britain.

Perhaps we can just acknowledge each new bit of self-inflicted harm with the words "no biggie".

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Critics 'chuck rocks from both sides' at May's Brexit plans

https://www.yahoo.com/news/pressure-mounts-may-critics-tear-her-brexit-plan-075416972.html

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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