Today, in a speech to Parliament, UK prime minister Theresa May pledged to stand down before the next phase of Brexit negotiations if Parliament would vote for her deal.

Assuming this is not one monstrous lie, May will be gone on or before May 22.

She immediately became a lame duck with her announcement.

Bercow's Threats

Commons Speaker John Bercow's threatens to hold off on allowing another vote on May's deal unless there are changes.

Q. What's Bercow's Angle?

A. He does not want Brexit.

Bercow looks like an ass for his rulings.

One way or another, there will be at least one more vote. If it's close and fails, there will be two more votes.

Unicorn Sideshow

Bercow did allow votes on numerous unicorns that either May will not allow or the EU will not accept.

  • B - John Baron’s - No deal - Backed by Conservative MPs John Baron, David Amess, Martin Vickers and Stephen Metcalfe, the motion proposes leaving the European Union without a deal on April 12.
  • D - Nick Boles’s - common market 2.0
  • H - George Eustice’s - Efta and EEA
  • J - Ken Clarke’s - Customs union
  • K - Labour’s - Customs union and alignment with single market
  • L - Joanna Cherry’s - Revocation to avoid no deal
  • M - Dame Margaret Beckett’s - Confirmatory public vote
  • O - Marcus Fysh’s - Contingent preferential arrangements - A group of Conservative MPs, including Marcus Fysh, Steve Baker and Priti Patel, have signed a motion that calls for the government to seek to agree preferential trade arrangements with the EU, in case the UK is unable to implement a withdrawal agreement with the bloc.

Only B and O are worth discussing. B will not happen, but the EU would accept it and May would likely go along with it. Thus it's theoretically possible, but it will not happen.

Option O does not need a vote. It would happen by default if there is a no-deal Brexit.

The rest are all unicorns. Either May will not accept them or the EU will not accept them.

Odds Are the Deal Passes

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Jacob Rees-Mogg, the chair of the European Research Group, has just told Sky News that he thinks the chances of Theresa May’s deal being passed are now “much higher than they were”.

If DUP can be persuaded to back this deal, it's all over but the shouting and crying.

Perhaps it takes a 4th meaningful vote and some sort of subtle but meaningless word change by the EU.

Boris Johnson to Back May's Deal

Please consider Boris Johnson to Back May's Brexit Deal After Resignation Pledge.

Johnson once called May's deal a "suicide vest".

Q. What does Johnson want?

A. That's easy, to be the next Prime Minister.

From this side of the Atlantic, I don't care who the next UK PM is other than that person be a hard-core Brexiteer.

It is easy for a dedicated, stubborn PM to get his or her way. Theresa May just proved that, even if she had to fall on her own sword to do it.

The next PM will have tremendous latitude with the EU including threats of stopping payments if the the EU does not negotiate in good faith.

Johnson or any other hard Brexiteer will not give up fishing rights or Gibraltar. Nor would Johnson increase payments. Instead he would work on negotiating a decent trade deal.

Deal Now Workable

With May out the way, her deal becomes workable.

  1. Germany will be all too willing to go along because its exports will soon collapse.
  2. A hard-core Brexiter can refuse to make payments. The EU would sue. So what? There is no enforcement procedure if the UK refuses to pay.
  3. Sovereign nations have lots of latitude. Look at US sanctions on Russia, Iran, Venezuela, etc.

Hello, Borris Johnson?

Mike "Mish" Shedlock