Following a historic defeat of Theresa May’s Brexit deal that was put forward to parliament two weeks ago and narrowly surviving a vote of no confidence, she has been forced to go back to the drawing board and come up with a new deal before March 29th when the UK is set to leave the EU; only 57 days away now. The members of parliament have consistently failed to come up with a majority vote and fears of a hard no-deal Brexit have been looming evidently.
However, May has had an unconventional win as government has agreed on a proposal for alternative options for the deal to be struck with the EU. The proposal that was put forward by Conservative Party MP Sir Graham Brady won a majority vote of 317 over 301. From this proposal it is clear the British parliament is most keen on renegotiations concerning the unpopular no-deal option off the table, as well as the Northern Irish Border. Why? Well following the UK’s departure from the EU come March, this border between Northern Ireland and Ireland will be the only physical border between the two factions; a border that is very important for trade. Normally this separation would mean there should be stops and checks at this border for goods going back and forth but this is a trade disincentive and therefore the UK is eager to have an exit deal in which this border remains as open as it is now in order to promote trade.
Even in the event that such a deal does not come to realization in time, there exists what is being called a “backstop”: a legal guarantee that there will be no hard border at the North Ireland border. But critics of Teresa May’s exit deal – eventually responsible for her historic defeat in Parliament a fortnight ago – are skeptical of the details of this “backstop.” And despite all these developments, The EU has come out to say strongly that they are not open to any renegotiations, leaving May and her team between a rock and a hard place.