When European leaders meet this weekend, they are expected to back the Brexit withdrawal package put forward by Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May.
For one thing, the other 27 EU members no doubt want to get shot of the debilitating debacle over Britain’s exit from the bloc, which has been grinding on for nearly two and half years since the country voted in a historic referendum to leave the union.
The next move will then be May putting the Brexit package to the British parliament for a vote, probably early next month. Despite the outrage last week from within her own Conservative party and the various opposition parties panning the proposed Brexit road map.
The unelected British PM is betting on eventually getting enough lawmakers to vote for it. She will have to rely on opposition lawmakers, primarily from the Labor party, joining with Conservatives to endorse her proposed Brexit.
It is expected that around 50 MP’s among her Conservative back benches who are for a hard Brexit will likely vote against her withdrawal plan.
They view the proposal as a sellout of Brexit because it envisages a transition period of up to two years during which Britain will effectively be still part of the EU in terms of single-market membership.
The hard Brexiteers dream of Britain once again becoming a buccaneering free-trading nation, just as they imagine it was during the heyday of the British Empire more than a century ago. Such nostalgia seems delusional and fatal.
European leaders have said that there is no possibility of further negotiations. In effect, they are saying that May’s package is the only one on the table. For their part, it’s either back her deal or face a cliff plunge.
For the EU, they want to get this British debacle wrapped up as soon as possible. If May does not get the British parliament to back her plan, then the Brexiteers within her party will likely trigger their plot to topple her.
Hard Brexiteers like former Foreign Minister Boris Johnson are sharpening their knives. Johnson condemned May’s Brexit proposal last week as “turning Britain into a colony of the EU”.
Boris Johnson is being tipped as a successor prime minister. But, somebody like Johnson taking over would be back to the cliff-crash option. And while the British public and many lawmakers do not support May’s offer, they realize that it’s the least damaging option.
There seems to be no good options for Britain. It has got itself into a deadlock over Brexit. Britain is on a cliff edge. But the other direction is not much better either.
Stepping back from the plunge, the country is facing a quagmire of political infighting and self-defeating inertia.
Strategic Culture Organization / ABC Flash Point Political News 2018.