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brexit breakdown
March 25, 2019

The third time is most certainly not the Brexit charm.

After suffering two failures, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said Monday there isn't "sufficient support" to bring her proposed Brexit deal for a third vote in Parliament. The announcement effectively spells the end of May's wildly unpopular plan, piling even more uncertainty onto Britain's delayed EU departure.

May's plan for a "slow Brexit" has been rejected twice, with a historic 432-202 denial in January sparking a no-confidence vote in the leader. There's since been little visible progress to find a deal both May's Conservative Party and the opposition Labour will agree on, leading the EU to agree to delay Brexit until June 30 at May's request. In the meantime, the Labour Party has floated the idea of running a second Brexit referendum that could keep Britain in the EU after all. Kathryn Krawczyk

March 20, 2019

Theresa May officially wants to put the breaks on Brexit.

The U.K. prime minister's plans for Britain's exit from the EU have continued to falter, prompting votes that question confidence in her leadership and even calls for her to resign. And in a sure sign that May still hasn't figured things out, she asked European Council President Donald Tusk on Wednesday for a three-month extension on Britain's stay in the EU.

May is set to meet with EU leaders on Thursday and, with a previously set Brexit deadline of March 29 less than two weeks away, is expected to ask for an extension, Politico reports. May told MPs Tuesday that she wouldn't delay Brexit any further than her June 30 request, per BBC. Still, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker responded by "formally warn[ing] May that if an extension is granted beyond May 23's European Parliament elections, there would be "institutional difficulties and legal uncertainty," CNN notes.

Britain voted to leave the EU more than two years ago, but has struggled to come up with a deal that would preserve trade relations with the bloc. Parliament has continually shot down May's proposed deals to exit, but also ruled out a no-deal Brexit with a non-binding vote last week. Kathryn Krawczyk

March 14, 2019

The United Kingdom's Parliament voted on Thursday to accept a government motion to delay Brexit, approving the move 412-202.

The U.K. was scheduled to break with the EU on March 29, but members of Parliament have in recent weeks struggled to agree on an approach; rejecting Prime Minister Theresa May's plan for the trade terms of the departure, and also rejecting the possibility of exiting the EU with no plan whatsoever. Parliament will ask the EU to delay the Brexit date by at least three months, as the EU must approve the extension before anything can be finalized.

Britain's departure will now likely be postponed, though next steps remain unclear as lawmakers remain deadlocked on how to avoid economic turmoil upon a divorce from the bloc. Summer Meza

March 11, 2019

British Prime Minister Theresa May failed to win last-minute concessions from the European Union, with no plans for her to go to Brussels on Monday ahead of a planned vote on her Brexit strategy in British Parliament on Tuesday, Reuters reports. The meltdown puts her in danger of another humiliating defeat just 18 days before the U.K. is scheduled to leave the EU, with no ratified deal on Britain's relationship with the European trading bloc after it leaves.

"May has boxed herself even deeper into a corner, it seems the second meaningful vote will go ahead on Tuesday but it also seems like it won't be the last meaningful vote on this," one EU official said. "We really want to be over with it now." Harold Maass

February 25, 2019

Britain's Labour Party has some big new Brexit goals.

In a Monday statement, the liberal wing of the U.K.'s Parliament announced it would introduce five major demands for Britain's exit from the EU. The party also said it would call for a second referendum, possibly allowing for Brexit to be called off if those demands aren't met.

Britain first voted to leave the EU in mid-2016, but its actual departure plan has been a mess ever since. Prime Minister Theresa May's only proposed Brexit deal failed spectacularly last month, and members of Parliament have since approved a nonbinding amendment blocking a Brexit without a deal preserving relations with the EU. Parliament now has to approve a deal before the March 29 scheduled exit or, as Labour is now hoping, hold a referendum and potentially reverse Brexit altogether.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn announced the party's call for a "people's vote" on Monday, reversing his previously "lukewarm" stance on a referendum, BBC says. Still, this push will only come if Labour's five demands for a Brexit deal aren't met in a Tuesday vote. Those demands include a "permanent customs union with the EU," as detailed in a press release here. Kathryn Krawczyk

January 17, 2019

Brexit just keeps getting even more complicated.

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May's plan to pull Britain out of the E.U. failed spectacularly Tuesday, leaving her Conservative Party scrambling to formulate a new deal for leaving the coalition. A vote on that yet unrevealed "Plan B" is scheduled for Jan. 29, but May wants a little help from her opposition before that happens, Al Jazeera reports.

In Tuesday's Parliament vote, Labour Party MPs and even May's Conservative colleagues resoundingly voted down the prime minister's slow Brexit pullout, 432-202. May will have to win back those defectors to formulate a deal before the country's scheduled March 29 exit. Otherwise, the country will depart without a deal, postpone its departure, or schedule a second referendum on Brexit.

May has since asked for the opposition party's help in figuring things out. But Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is telling his party not to talk unless "the threat of a disastrous no-deal outcome is ruled out," he said Thursday, per Reuters. Corbyn has also said he'd consider a second Brexit referendum. Seeing as a no-deal Brexit could throw Britain's trade deals into chaos, May isn't pushing for that option like some of her party colleagues. But she also won't postpone the departure or allow another referendum, leaving the whole debacle in very shaky territory.

Regardless, a vote on May's next Brexit plan is slated for Jan. 29, House of Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom said Thursday, per Reuters. That doesn't leave much time for the opposing parties to get talking, especially since Leadsom said May would discuss her next steps on Monday. Read more about what comes next at Al Jazeera. Kathryn Krawczyk

January 16, 2019

Britain's lower house of Parliament voted 432-202 to reject Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan on Tuesday night, and opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn quickly set in motion a vote of no confidence in May's government. After hours of debate, that vote will be held at 7 p.m. GMT on Wednesday. With few signs of defections, May is expected to survive this vote. If she doesn't, her Conservative Party and Labour will have 14 days to try to form a new government, and if neither succeeds, Britain will hold new national elections. The future of Britain's divorce from the European Union is unclear.

Tuesday's 230-vote loss set a new record, smashing the 166-vote loss a previous government suffered in 1924; this was the first time Parliament has ever defeated a treaty. The last successful no-confidence motion was in 1979, when the Labour government fell by one vote, ushering in Tory Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Peter Weber

January 15, 2019

As expected, United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan was soundly defeated Tuesday. What wasn't expected was the incredible 230-vote margin that took it down.

Parliament voted Tuesday, 432-202, to reject May's much-decried plan to exit the European Union. It's the biggest defeat the British government has suffered in nearly a century, and leaves Brexit and May's leadership in peril, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The opposition Labour Party rejected May's proposed Brexit path, and members of May's own Conservative Party publicly joined them. Many Brexit supporters said May's deal would have given too much control to the EU to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland, part of the U.K., and Ireland, an EU member.

This newest defeat means "all Brexit options are on the table," including a departure from the EU without any form of deal, and a second referendum to overturn Brexit altogether, per the Journal. Britain is scheduled to leave the EU on March 29, so there's not much time to find a new solution.

May had her concession speech ready before the vote, and welcomed a vote of confidence in her leadership, per The New York Times. Lawmakers narrowly preserved May's leadership in a confidence vote last month, but opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn has still called another vote for Wednesday, per The Guardian. Kathryn Krawczyk

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