News ID: 235979
Published: 0356 GMT December 17, 2018

Rejecting other Brexit options, Britain's May sticks by her deal

Rejecting other Brexit options, Britain's May sticks by her deal

British Prime Minister Theresa May is pressing on with her deal to leave the European Union, her spokesman said on Monday, rejecting calls for a second referendum or to test support for different Brexit options in parliament.

After a tumultuous week in which she survived a confidence vote and sought last-minute changes to a Brexit agreement reached with Brussels last month, May faces deadlock over her deal in the British Parliament, Reuters wrote.

With the EU offering little in the way of concessions to win over lawmakers, an increasing number of politicians are calling for a second referendum – something some of her ministers say could be avoided if the government tested Brexit scenarios in parliamentary votes.

Parliament is deeply divided, with factions pressing for different options for future ties, exiting without a deal or remaining in the EU.

May and her ministers have repeatedly ruled out a replay of the referendum, saying it would deepen rifts and betray voters who backed Brexit by 52 percent to 48 percent in 2016.

That increases the risk of Britain leaving without a deal on March 29, a scenario some businesses fear would be catastrophic for the world's fifth largest economy.

"Let us not break faith with the British people by trying to stage another referendum," extracts of May’s statement to lawmakers on Monday released in advance read.

"Another vote which would do irreparable damage to the integrity of our politics, because it would say to millions who trusted in democracy, that our democracy does not deliver. Another vote which would likely leave us no further forward than the last." 

Business Minister Greg Clark said a second vote would only increase uncertainty for the country.

Several members of May's cabinet team, including Education Minister Damian Hinds, said at the weekend they were open to putting the range of options to Parliament to gauge whether there was a majority for any of them.

May's spokesman said: "In relation to an indicative vote, there are no plans to hold one."




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