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In my scenario, Corbyn agrees to a referendum only if May agrees to a general election if her deal is voted down. The problem is would her MP's even agree to her deal to call a GE in that event, because it would be a case of Turkeys voting for Christmas. So Corbyn would need a legal guarantee of a GE if the referendum goes against May. Is it even possible to pass a compound bill in Parliament providing both for a referendum followed by a GE if the referendum is lost? Cause no Tory is going to vote for an early GE after a referendum is lost.
Index of Frank's Diaries
I agree that Corbyn's presence would make little difference in Brussels (but the promise that the agreement would actually be deliverable might). The main concession they would need is to leave final status hanging, to be negotiated by the winner of the subsequent elections.
It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue
- Queen Elizabeth II
The Tories still won the vote, partly because Corbyn and some other Labour MPs weren't present - which is bizarre enough in itself.
Meanwhile Momentum are reporting there are preparations for a snap election.
It's tempting to wonder if there's a mad plan in which a GE effectively becomes a vote on the deal. If May gets a mandate (she won't...) she can go back to Parliament and say "Here's my mandate - now vote for my deal."
This is, even by Tory standards, a completely bonkers idea.
Even more bonkers would be a vote of no confidence from the 1922 Committee in the run-up to an election, in some kind of insane attempt to replace May with an ultra-brexiter before votes are cast.
The next few weeks are likely to be very weird.
What I instead expect is that Corbyn will not wade in, but instead stay at the side and heckle May while calling for a general election, making the Tories own their Brexit.
May will hesitate, waffle and stall. Then she will come up with things it is to late for. Then more stalling and at the last, a desperate move. Which I don't know.
Maybe some owners explain that her post-political fortunes hang in the balance and she (as PM) withdraws the Article 50 declaration and then resigns and cashes the cheques. (Can she? She already did, so it's too late. She can't hear you over all the money flowing in.)
Or maybe some owners prefers to rule in hell and gives her cheques if she does a hard Brexit, in which case she just stalls until April and then blames Brussels and Corbyn.
Maybe the owners call a Tory conference and explain one on one how much dirt they have on the MPs since their boarding school days and wouldn't they prefer some nice cash? And then suddenly the deal passes (with the help of "rebellious" boarding school Labour MPs).
I dunno. I just think that it will continue to be a lesson in how not to exit the EU.
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