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brexit breakdown
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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