British MPs running out of options to block no-deal Brexit
Stopping the UK from leaving the European Union without a deal is “very unlikely” due to the lack of time to secure a new agreement and reduced opportunities for lawmakers to legislate against it, the Institute for Government has concluded in a report.
The UK-based think tank highlights that although the country’s new Prime Minister Boris Johnson has indicated preferring to leave the bloc with a deal, the scope of that happening is very slim
See the full report here
MPs are currently on summer recess and are not scheduled to get back to Westminster until September 3. Johnson has stressed that the UK would leave the EU by October 31 “do or die,” leaving just 58 days for the two parties to meet for negotiations, agree on a new deal and have it approved by their respective parliaments.
If no new deal is agreed, and with the legal default being a no-deal Brexit, lawmakers opposed to such an event are unlikely to be able to derail the process, the report notes.
Deploying the “nuclear option” — a vote of no confidence — would probably not block a no-deal exit either.
Should the government lose — which would require at least one Conservative lawmaker to rebel — it would still be allowed to remain in power during a 14 day-period even if an alternative government could be found or call a second vote which could cancel out the first one.
With snap elections requiring a five-week build-up by law, “Johnson could try to set a date after 31 October, thereby ensuring that the UK left without a deal first,” the report states.
Holding a second referendum before the Brexit deadline also appears unlikely as it would need government support and another extension to Article 50.