The opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn moved motion of no confidence against Prime Minister Theresa May soon after she lost Brexit vote in the lower house of parliament. The vote of no confidence was on the cards for some time and Labour Party was looking for good opportunity to table it. The embarrassing defeat of PM May on Brexit vote provided that opportunity.
The simple majority of one vote required to unseat the prime minister. If May’s government is defeated, the UK prime minister will have 14 days to stay in office. A second confidence vote will then take place, if any member of parliament failed to get the required majority to become the prime minister and win vote of confidence then this would automatically trigger a general election.
Her fate mainly depends on the dissidents of her party who wants to see her back. If more than 60 MPs of her party turned against her then she might lose the vote of no confidence. But if her party remained united and fully backed her then she might survive. Her allies are still backing her. But her headache is the differences among her Tory party. Some of her former cabinet colleagues tried to remove her as party leader but failed.
If she failed to survive and lost the confidence of the parliament then she will be the second causality of Brexit. Her predecessor David Cameron resigned as PM after losing the Brexit Referendum in 2016.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn tabled the motion of no confidence in the parliament and said that May had faced a “catastrophic defeat.” “Delay and denial has reached the end of the line,” he said. Corbyn said May had repeatedly failed the British people and failed to deliver on her promise to secure a good Brexit deal.
“She cannot seriously believe that after two years of failure, she is capable of negotiating a good deal for the people of this country,” he said, adding that the “most important issue” facing the country is that the government has lost the confidence “of this House and this country.”
May had earlier lashed out at Corbyn, accusing him of being “long on criticism and short on coherence.” It is expected that the vote of no confidence will take place at 7pm British local time.
The main sticking point for May on the Brexit deal has been the contentious Irish backstop — a guarantee Dublin sought and won from Brussels that there will be no ‘hard’ border imposed on the island of Ireland when the UK leaves the EU. May had attempted to gain concessions from Brussels to assuage the fears of pro-Brexit Tories and Northern Irish DUP MPs who were unhappy with the backstop deal, but did not secure any legal changes.
Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon said that the Scottish National Party supported Corbyn’s tabling of a no confidence motion, describing the vote as “a defeat of historic proportions” for May. Sturgeon accused the prime minister of wasting “valuable time” by delaying the vote in December when it was clear she did not have the support needed.
Sturgeon said the “only credible option” remaining was to hold a second Brexit referendum. That was also the only option that would “allow Scotland’s democratic wish to remain in Europe to be respected,” she added.
The Irish DUP party has announced to support the PM May and to oppose the vote of no confidence. May government cannot survive without the support of the DUP MPs.
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17 November, 2019