Brendan Donnelly warns that Parliament can only influence the final stages of the Brexit negotiations if it can create a clear and realistic alternative to the Prime Minister’s proposals. It is not enough to denounce “no deal.” The House of Commons must agree on what to put in its place.
A frequent criticism of the Prime Minister is that she prematurely triggered the Article 50 negotiations in March 2017 and did so without a realistic plan for their conduct. If she had waited longer and planned better, her critics contend, she could have negotiated a more acceptable Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration than the texts she is now having such difficulty steering through Parliament. It is certainly true that Theresa May began the Brexit negotiations with no realistic plan. But no amount of delay and no amount of planning would have allowed her ever to achieve results acceptable to a majority of “Leave” voters and their Parliamentary sympathisers, let alone to the electorate or to Parliament as a whole. “No deal” was from the beginning the most likely outcome. […]
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