Brexit: With May gone the Tory divide is to sink the UK despite Brits wanting to ‘Remain’

London, 10 Downing Street, 24 May 2019. The British Prime Minister Theresa May announcing her decision to resign as leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party on Friday 7 June. The new President of the party is to succeed her also in the Premiership. (Photo from Prime Minister’s Office).

When the British Tory Prime Minister Theresa May broke the talks with Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn about Brexit, every analyst wondered what else the Brits could ever think to make things worse. And the Conservative party turned up with a devastating answer to this question; they forced PM May to resign. In this way, the governing Conservative Party paved the way, God forbid, to Boris Johnson to become the next UK Prime Minister.

The EU affairs are a poisonous pill for the British Conservatives. On this account, the Tories have chased away from Premiership both their past two women leaders, Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May. There is, of course, a difference. Thatcher was at the zenith of her power, yet her party brought her down and consequently she had to quite Premiership. Theresa May is now suffering the same ‘treatment’ from her colleagues, but she is obviously at the nadir of her career.

A disastrous divide

In both cases, the Tories were so deeply divided concerning UK’s stance vis-à-vis the European Union, that the stalemate swept away the two ladies Prime Ministers and party’s Presidents. Actually, this time, it’s the third Tory Prime Minister and party’s President the Conservatives get rid of. David Cameron was in the middle of this series when he resigned after losing the Brexit referendum of June 2016, which he had promised to the British people in 2013 in order to raise his chances to be elected again and having fought for ‘Remain’.

Still, the crucial question remains though. Can anybody and probably Boris Johnson unite the Conservatives on a Brexit deal? This is highly improbable. He is prone to gaffes, while had a very poor and brief term as Foreign Secretary and has many enemies in the party. Not to say anything of course about the majority of the Brits. Increasingly more people now don’t want their country to leave the EU at all, in direct opposition to what Boris proclaims.

It’s always a dead-end

By the same token, none of the at least eight other Tory MPs, who currently aspire to succeed May, can unite the party on anything related to Brexit. Let alone striking a clear deal on it in the dazed Commons. Many have tried that but in vain. This brings us to the other only certain thing. The Parliament has voted many times on many Brexit options and all of them were rejected. It became super clear then the majority of the 650 MPs can only agree that there should never be a no-deal Brexit.

At this point, the results of last week’s EU election in Britain become relevant. Simple arithmetic tells us that the parties who oppose Brexit altogether won the day. Harlequin Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party may have come first but the opposition of ‘remainders’ is still strong. His party plus the other two pro-Brexit groups – UKIP and the Irish DUP – got 5.95 million votes. In comparison, the parties which have been clearly fighting against Brexit and have been propagating for ‘remain’ got 6.8 million votes (Liberal Democrats, Greens, Change UK, SNP, Plaid, Sinn Fein and the Alliance Party in Northern Ireland).

More voters for ‘Remain’

The accounting doesn’t end here though. The two major party voters – Conservatives and Labor – are deeply divided by Brexit. According to estimates, 80% of Conservatives are pro Brexit and 60% of Labor voters support ‘remain’. Calculations by the newsgroup ‘The Guardian’, “ show 2.1 million more for leave composed of 1.2 million Conservatives and 938,000 Labour voters and 1.7 million more for remain made up from 302,000 Tories and 1.4 million for Jeremy Corbyn’s party”.

Undoubtedly thus the ‘Remain’ side has become much more populous than what is was in June 2016. Hence, obviously a second referendum is absolutely necessary to settle the Brexit score, since the political weight has changed in favor of the ‘remainers’. The problem is, though, that a conservative government under any probable party President and Prime Minister will face insurmountable difficulties,  presenting to the Parliament a vote for a second plebiscite. Contra, Boris Johnson would never do that.

Alas, Theresa May as PM had not the courage and the guts to ignore her party’s Brexiteers and take Jeremy Corbyn’s offer for a second referendum. In this way, the Brexit deadlock could have been finally resolved. Now, any alternative is open and the Tory divide may take the entire UK down the drain. It has already cost a lot to the Albion.

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