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Could Theresa May’s replacement force through a no-deal Brexit?

5 25 0
24.05.2019

So Theresa May has reached the end of the road as prime minister. A number of candidates who have thrown their hat in the ring have made it clear that they would rather leave the EU without a deal than the one negotiated by May.

Brexit votes earlier this year have shown that there is a majority in the Commons opposed to a no-deal Brexit – but the procedural options open to them to avoid this outcome are severely limited (unless the Speaker, John Bercow, decides on a more flexible interpretation of parliamentary convention, which is possible).

MPs were most successful in taking action to avoid no deal when they managed to take control of parliamentary time to pass a bill (the “Cooper bill”) which required the government to ask for an extension to article 50 ahead of 12 April (although May had already planned to do so). However, this opportunity came through provisions inserted into the EU Withdrawal Act, which meant that May had to hold a “meaningful vote” on her deal before she could ratify it, and then hold a subsequent vote on the government’s next steps once her deal was rejected.

A new prime minister who wants to leave without a deal is not required to hold this vote; the provisions of the EU Withdrawal Act no longer apply.........

© The Guardian