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No deal Brexit opposed by British lawmakers

British MPs have rejected the amendment which sought to delay Brexit until May 22 for further preparations to take place in order to mitigate the impact of a no-deal Brexit should no agreement be reached.

Posted: Mar 13, 2019 9:20 PM
Updated: Mar 13, 2019 9:20 PM

British lawmakers have decisively rejected a no-deal Brexit, inflicting another heavy defeat on Britain's embattled Prime Minister and paving a way for the UK's departure from the EU to be delayed.

The UK Parliament forced Theresa May to reject the option of leaving the European Union without a deal in any circumstances, in a motion that was worded more strongly than she had proposed.

Lawmakers will now vote on Thursday to decide whether Brexit should be postponed beyond the current March 29 deadline.

Wednesday's vote, carried by 321 to 278, doesn't change the default legal position, which is that without deal, or unless the EU agrees to delay Brexit, Britain crashes out in just over two weeks. That raises the prospect of huge delays at ports, food shortages in supermarkets, and a rise in long-simmering tensions in Northern Ireland.

May told the House of Commons that it would face important choices in the coming days. "The legal default in UK and EU law remains that the UK will leave the EU without a deal unless something else is agreed," she said after the vote.

She said that the government would ask the EU to delay Brexit if Parliament could agree on a withdrawal deal. "If the House finds a way in the coming days to support a deal, it would allow the government to seek a short technical extension. Such a short technical extension is only likely to be on offer if there's a deal in place."

Without consensus on a deal in the coming days, there will need to be a longer extension which would force the UK to take part in elections to the European Parliament in May, she said. "I do not think that would be the right outcome," the Prime Minister told lawmakers.

The prospect of the UK Parliament backing May's withdrawal deal seems remote. Lawmakers overwhelmingly rejected it for a second time on Tuesday, furious about a contentious guarantee, known as the Irish backstop. It's intended to prevent the return of border infrastructure in Northern Ireland by keeping customs arrangements between the UK and the Republic of Ireland aligned.

Euroskeptic lawmakers feared it would indefinitely bind the UK closer to the EU's rules.

Hardening mood

Any request by the UK to delay Brexit must be agreed by Brussels. But the mood has been hardening among European politicians, who seem reluctant to reopen negotiations for a withdrawal deal or grant a delay to Brexit without any specific purpose.

EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier told Members of the European Parliament on Wednesday that the ball was firmly in London's court. "It is UK's responsibility to tell us what they want for our future relations. That is the question that needs to be posed to which we expect an answer. It will be a priority even before the question of an extension. Negotiations on Article 50 are finished," he said.

The EU noted that Wednesday's vote had no legal effect. "To take no deal off the table, it is not enough to vote against no deal -- you have to agree to a deal", an EU spokesperson said.

"We have agreed a deal with the Prime Minister and the EU is ready to sign it," the spokesperson added. "There are only two ways to leave the EU: with or without a deal. The EU is prepared for both."

Divided house

As it stands, there seems to be no consensus in the House of Commons for any kind of Brexit.

One possible route is a third vote on May's withdrawal deal. May indicated as much at the House of Commons on Wednesday. "I want to leave the EU with a good deal, I believe we have a good deal," May, who is battling a cold, said.

"I may not have my own voice, but I understand the voice of the country."

Pro-EU lawmakers are pushing for a second referendum on Brexit. But the House of Commons doesn't seem ready to take that route either. Jeremy Corbyn, the opposition Labour leader, a longstanding euroskeptic, has still not embraced the cause of a so-called People's Vote, declining to advocate it when he addressed the Commons after May's withdrawal deal was defeated on Tuesday.

There are questions about whether May can survive the turmoil -- and whether the deadlock can only be broken by a general election.

As the clock ticks towards withdrawal day, business groups expressed dire warnings.

"We are now staring down the precipice," Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chair at the City of London Corporation said on Tuesday. "Politicians of every hue must overcome their differences and make avoiding a no-deal Brexit the absolute priority.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 153270

Reported Deaths: 3807
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto10249104
Hinds10095199
Harrison7173111
Jackson6440124
Rankin5705103
Lee517095
Madison4902107
Forrest385986
Jones361788
Lauderdale3567147
Lafayette329752
Washington3197108
Lamar294750
Oktibbeha248462
Bolivar242484
Lowndes240464
Panola224852
Neshoba2225118
Marshall219450
Leflore206891
Pontotoc202429
Monroe201078
Lincoln192865
Sunflower191955
Warren177757
Tate175351
Union169526
Copiah165440
Pike163958
Yazoo157940
Scott156630
Itawamba155635
Pearl River153468
Alcorn152828
Coahoma151043
Simpson150353
Prentiss148431
Adams143151
Grenada141445
Leake138344
Holmes131561
Tippah126730
George126225
Covington124639
Winston123726
Hancock122840
Wayne119023
Marion117346
Attala116134
Tishomingo110042
Chickasaw108332
Newton107529
Tallahatchie97427
Clarke92453
Clay92327
Jasper83522
Stone78515
Calhoun77713
Walthall76929
Montgomery75425
Carroll73815
Lawrence72614
Smith72116
Yalobusha72028
Noxubee71917
Perry67726
Tunica61819
Greene60822
Claiborne58816
Jefferson Davis57817
Amite55214
Humphreys54319
Benton49618
Quitman4947
Webster45014
Kemper44218
Wilkinson40122
Jefferson35711
Franklin3485
Choctaw3457
Sharkey31717
Issaquena1174
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 247229

Reported Deaths: 3577
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson32718500
Mobile19904362
Madison13425148
Tuscaloosa13167154
Montgomery12380236
Shelby1046577
Baldwin882098
Lee778566
Morgan675150
Calhoun6366121
Etowah635166
Marshall630955
Houston532338
DeKalb489736
Cullman447442
Limestone430245
St. Clair425755
Lauderdale413354
Elmore409464
Walker3689111
Talladega353554
Jackson327123
Colbert314642
Blount294640
Autauga275142
Franklin254233
Coffee246515
Dale234454
Dallas226532
Chilton225038
Russell22313
Covington220334
Escambia198631
Chambers177250
Tallapoosa177091
Pike159214
Clarke158919
Marion141336
Winston134423
Lawrence129636
Pickens124218
Geneva12378
Marengo122524
Bibb118817
Barbour117511
Butler117342
Randolph103821
Cherokee102924
Hale97731
Fayette92216
Clay92024
Washington91619
Henry8676
Lowndes79929
Monroe79011
Cleburne77414
Macon74522
Crenshaw71230
Bullock70019
Perry6896
Conecuh68514
Lamar6838
Wilcox63918
Sumter58422
Greene42718
Choctaw42613
Coosa3464
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