After months of refusing to take the chaos of No Deal off the table, the Prime Minister must now face the reality that No Deal is not an option. There is no majority in Parliament for crashing out of the EU, and a No Deal Brexit would be a disaster for jobs, the economy and the border in Northern Ireland.
Just this week many of our leading supermarket and food retailers have warned that a No Deal scenario will lead to empty shelves and shortages of fresh food.
For those who are now claiming that No Deal is what 17.4million people voted for in 2016, it’s worth remembering that the official Vote Leave campaign promised that “Taking back control is a careful change, not a sudden stop – we will negotiate the terms of a new deal before we start any legal process to leave.” (see http://www.voteleavetakecontrol.org/our_case.html).
A lot of people have claimed to know exactly why 17.4million people voted leave, but it’s surely incorrect to say that they all voted for No Deal and the chaos that will cause. It is simply not a viable option.
Last night the Government whipped their own MPs to support an amendment brought by Conservative MP Sir Graham Brady which asks the PM to do what she herself has said is not possible. It is a desperate and shambolic situation.
Instead of making false promises to renegotiate a deal she knows she can’t deliver, the Prime Minister should now accept that her failed red lines will have to go and an alternative Brexit deal must be found – as Labour has called for: a deal that protects jobs, living standards and workers’ rights and environmental standards, including through a comprehensive customs union with a UK say and strong single market deal.
That is what Jeremy Corbyn will be asking Theresa May for when he meets with her today.