May to hold vote on no-deal Brexit

May 1

Theresa May

Theresa May

British Prime Minister, Theresa May, will ask lawmakers to rule out Britain leaving the EU without an agreement on Wednesday after they overwhelmingly rejected for a second time the Brexit deal she has negotiated with the EU.

May’s motion asks parliament’s elected main house, the Commons, to reject a no-deal Brexit but notes that “leaving without a deal remains the default in UK and EU law unless this house and the EU ratify an agreement.”

If, as expected, the lawmakers agree with the motion in a free vote, she has promised another vote on Thursday on extending the Brexit process, just 15 days before Britain is scheduled to leave the EU on March 29.

After a crushing defeat in the second “meaningful vote’’ on her Brexit deal late Tuesday, May said she remained “passionate about delivering the result of the [2016 Brexit] referendum.”

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“But I equally passionately believe that the best way to do that is to leave in an orderly way with a deal and I still believe there is a majority in the house for that course of action,” she said.

“And I am conscious of my duties as prime minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

“And also the potential damage to the union that leaving without a deal could do when one part of our country is without devolved governance,” May added.

She was referring to the suspension of Northern Ireland’s power-sharing government for more than two years.