Today is a good day!
Despite having been told, repeatedly, daily, gleefully for two years that we would be leaving the EU by 11pm tonight, we all woke up this morning in the knowledge that one thing was certain: We will still be in the EU past 11pm tonight!
May’s deal has been defeated again. Donald Tusk has called for an emergency EU Council meeting on 10th April.
As Parliament has also made it very clear they won’t support a ‘no deal’ Brexit, this means that by the EU Council meeting on 10th April, to avoid us crashing out on 12th April, TM will have to put forward a viable proposal to the EU, and that will inevitably include a long extension and EU elections. I believe, as do most in the People’s Vote campaign, that holding EU elections will be a good thing – we can energise the huge pro-EU movement and really seize the opportunity to get pro-EU MEPs who will work for their constituents and for a united Europe, rather than disrupt from within like Farage et al.
We may finally get a #PeoplesVote, and/or a General Election may be called (hopefully not the latter, but it is looking more likely), Article 50 may be revoked, or May (or whoever is in charge by then!) might ask for a further extension for time to come up with another Withdrawal Agreement, or a new Political Declaration to accompany the WA, that Parliament and the EU can get behind.
All the talk on the news channels is around how long TM will remain in her post, but also, crucially, about ‘long delay or no Brexit at all’ – there isn’t as much talk about crashing out on 12th April without a deal (even though the EU stressed this is now more likely, and they are fully prepared)!
Parliament now needs to get legislation through to stop a ‘no deal’ Brexit: They have shown they can take control of proceedings and will do so, so they then need to either pass legislation to force TM to revoke Article 50 or, more likely, to force her to request a long extension (with a good reason, e.g. People’s Vote) and accept whatever terms the EU place on granting such an extension.
Monday’s second round of indicative votes will therefore definitely go ahead now, and these are more crucial than ever.
A coach filled with ‘Yorkshire for EU’ campaigners will make it’s way to Westminster on Monday to make our presence felt outside.
Incidentally, and unsurprisingly, Caroline Flint was one of few Labour MPs who voted against the Whip and voted in support of the Withdrawal Agreement, again, today. Ed Miliband voted against, thank goodness! (Dame Rosie Winterton can’t vote as she’s Deputy Speaker)
Have a good and restful weekend, and whatever else you do, do raise a glass and have a celebration tonight that, for now at least, we are still in the EU! Every little victory needs celebrating, as we need to keep our energy and spirits up for the next stage. So, enjoy today & tonight, rest at the weekend, and get ready for another rollercoaster week ahead!