By Matt Spivey
Deputy Politics Editor
As Theresa May’s Brexit plummets towards catastrophe and the path of Britain’s exit is sent awry, can the nation still have trust in a PM whose own party and supporters have lost confidence in her ability to provide the best for Britain on its route out of the EU?
May’s noteworthy resilience in the face of public scrutiny and successive knockbacks cannot go unrecognised, but can her strength of character survive against the urgent need for Britain to leave the EU with the best deal attainable? The deal currently proposed falls short not only of the demands which would secure British independence from the EU, but rather seems like the attempt of a remain-voter to offer the softest Brexit possible, to the stage that removal from the EU seems so minimal that democracy is actually done a disservice. If May is to recover from the chain reactions of resignations and repositioning, then serious consideration into the force with which Britain enters these final proposed negotiations needs to be determined.
Jeremy Corbyn’s scathing analysis of May’s efforts, and his new-found upper-hand in the house of commons painted May as an incompetent leader for the UK in such divisive and shifting times. He commented that May’s plan took “two years to reach and just two days to unravel”, and with a laughable sense of irony he stated that the PM’s resigning ministers have ‘jumped a sinking ship, far from being strong and stable’. Whilst Corbyn’s witty remarks offer serious criticism of the PM and her recent blunders, May’s broken Brexit is not a subject suited to comic commentary. The future of May’s position in Westminster, and that of Britain within the global political powerhouse has been seriously undermined by her recent failures on such a public and vital political platform.
Ex-Brexit Secretary David Davis left a clear message upon his resignation; that the “return of control to parliament is more illusory than it is real”; a notion supported by the opposition leader who claimed that May’s façade of capability in government was an “illusion that lasted 48 hours”. Davis leaves in his stead a shaken cabinet, a heightened sense of public apprehension and a new Brexit Secretary whose past reveals more concerns than reassurances.
Dominic Raab, who has claimed he is ‘looking forward to intensifying and heating up the negotiations’, certainly seems more passionate about concluding a Brexit deal with “renewed energy” and vigour than his predecessor in the current turbulent situation. His willingness to battle for Britain’s exit to be in the best national interest is a reinvigorating introduction into the Brexit narrative, but at what cost will this deal be agreed? As a self-professed cynic of individual social and economic rights, Raab’s personal views call into question to what extent he will prioritise the nation over the individual. The opportunity to leave the EU is a transformative and reformative chance to redefine the social, political and economic structures within Britain, but Raab’s anti-human rights beliefs unhinge confidence in his ability to do so in a progressive and individual-focussed manner.
With May’s future as PM in the balance and the nation unsure of what lies ahead, Britain’s future is insecure and deeply concerning. As she prepares for her visit to Northern Ireland, no one can be more apprehensive and focussed than Theresa May regarding the future of Britain’s international role. Her political career and legacy remain in jeopardy, and the restructuring of her proposal will occupy national and international interest for the months to come. Whilst scathing criticism and national humiliation are a prominent feature of Theresa May’s cabinet, new conceptions and proposals for Britain’s exit from the EU should become the sole focus of political minds nationwide.
Whilst May’s perseverance in the face of adversity is commendable, the question of whether or not she is the best PM for Britain now is answered concludingly, no. Her contribution to the Brexit negotiations have been tireless and calculated to the nth degree, but ultimately her input has been exhausted.
It’s time, I feel, for new, refreshed and innovative leadership that can place a fresh pair of eyes on the flaws in the current proposal, without May’s spent involvement in Brexit negotiations.
Image by Number 10 via Flickr