May: The UK Will Leave the EU With a Deal or Not at All
The British Prime Minister issued a stark warning to Parliament
British Prime Minister Theresa May issued a strong statement to Parliament: Either vote to accept the negotiated deal so that UK can leave the EU in an orderly fashion or the UK may never leave.
She said this in a speech on April, 6, 2019, just six days before the UK is set to crash out of the EU with no deal in place.
She is quoted as saying: “My strong preference was to do that [leave the EU] by winning a majority in Parliament for the agreement the UK reached with the EU last November. I did everything in my power to persuade the Conservative and DUP MPs who form the government’s majority to back that deal – including securing legally-binding changes to address MPs’ concerns with it.”
May went on to acknowledge that the deal has been rejected by Parliament on three separate occasions. But, while rejecting the deal, Parliament has also passed legislation saying that the UK cannot leave without a deal.
This has created a Catch-22 situation. The UK can not leave without a deal but Parliament keeps rejecting the deal so the UK can leave.
May also spoke about how not living up to the Brexit vote would be letting down the, albeit slim, majority in the UK who voted for it.
“The longer this takes, the greater the risk of the UK never leaving at all. It would mean letting the Brexit the British people voted for slip through our fingers. I will not stand for that. It is essential we deliver what people voted for and to do that we need to get a deal over the line,” May said.
To this end, she has sent a letter to European Commission President Donal Tusk asking for a second extension until June 30, 2019 to try to get the draft agreement, or any deal, passed by then to prevent a ‘hard Brexit’ or just not leaving at all.
The UK was scheduled to leave on March 29, 2019 but, with no deal in place, May was given an extension. Had Parliament accepted the draft agreement, the UK would have left on May 22, 2019, the day before the first day of voting for the EU Parliament.
However, with no deal in place, the EU set a date of April 12, 2019 for the UK to leave in a ‘hard Brexit.’
The EU has already scheduled a meeting for April 10, 2019 where they will then decide to force the UK out on April 12, 2019, as previously agreed upon, with no deal or grant May her requested extension.
“…I will go to Brussels this week to seek a short extension to Article 50. My intention is to reach an agreement with my fellow EU leaders that will mean if we can agree a deal here at home we can leave the EU in just six weeks,” May said.
If the EU agrees to this second extension, the UK will have to participate in the upcoming EU Parliament elections in the month of May only to not seat these newly elected officials if the UK does, in fact, leave the EU on June 30, 2019.