Theresa May Faces Leadership Challenge

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Theresa May Faces Leadership Challenge

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

On Wednesday, UK Prime Minister May faces a no-confidence Tory leadership vote over her no-Brexit/Brexit deal.

Her surrender to Brussels enraged around 100 members of her party and most other parliamentarians.

Strong opposition to her no-deal/deal forced her to postpone Tuesday’s scheduled vote she was certain to lose overwhelmingly.

Her Tory leadership is jeopardized over her botched talks with Brussels, showing ineptness, arrogance, and contempt for majority Brits, approving Brexit by referendum.

A Wednesday Tory no-confidence vote reflects her unpopularity – perhaps too deep to reverse. Whether approved or defeated, her days as prime minister may be numbered.

If UK parliamentarians reject her Brexit deal, Tories have up to 21 days to present a new plan, requiring renegotiation with Brussels.

After surrendering to its officials, there’s virtually no chance they’ll offer a better deal – leaving her vulnerable to adoption of a no-confidence vote against her, ending her tenure as prime minister.

It could come Wednesday or later. Her days as PM may be numbered. A new election is possible, giving Labor a chance to win a ruling majority.

The hard reality about May is she opposed Brexit before becoming PM, feigning support as Tory leader.

Two-and-a-half years after Brits voted for leaving the European Union, May failed to deliver what she promised.

Her earlier remarks proved hollow, saying “Brexit means Brexit.” Britain won’t remain “half-in (and) half-out” of the EU, adding:

“We do not seek to hold on to bits of membership as we leave. The United Kingdom is leaving the European Union. My job is to get the right deal for Britain as we do.”

As home secretary, she strongly opposed leaving the EU she pretended to support as PM – earlier saying “the economic arguments are clear…being part of a 500-million trading bloc is significant for us,” adding:

“There are definitely things we can do as members of the European Union that I think keep us more safe.”

Her remarks as home secretary clearly expressed where she stands on Brexit – wanting Britain remaining in the EU, not leaving.

The threshold for a no-confidence vote is 48 Tory parliamentarians supporting it. According to MP Andrew Bridgen, “a number of colleagues (submitted letters) of no confidence, adding:

“I believe that we have breached the 48-letter limit (15% of Tories), and that means if that’s the case (Tory MP) Graham Brady will be going to see the prime minister to call for a vote of confidence” on Wednesday.

Several Tory backbenchers submitted no-confidence letters to parliament’s backbencher Committee 1922. It’s authorized to launch a formal procedure challenging her leadership.

On Tuesday, Brady said “(i)n accordance with the rules, a ballot will be held between 18:00 and 20:00 on Wednesday 12th December in committee room 14 of the House of Commons.”

Votes will be tallied immediately following the vote, the announced result to follow at an unspecified day and time – perhaps late Wednesday on Thursday.

Remaining PM requires majority Tory support. If 158 of 315 party members vote against her, three months are required to choose a new PM.

Former Tory environment secretary Owen Paterson Brexit supporter/strong May critic minced no words accusing her of numerous “broken promises (throughout) more than two years of poor government decision-making” – following the June 23, 2016 referendum, majority Brits voting to leave the EU.

If a no-confidence vote is held Wednesday or later and she loses majority Tory support, a leadership contest will begin to choose a replacement.

On Tuesday, Angela Merkel reportedly told May they’ll be no Brexit renegotiations. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk reportedly said the same thing.

She’s between a rock and a hard place, a mess of her own making, her weakened status leaving her vulnerable to be replaced as PM sooner or later.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.