In an effort to curry favour with the Labour opposition; British PM Theresa May will meet their leader Jeremy Corbyn today, likely with the aim of convincing him to back her much maligned Brexit deal. But will May’s proposals fall on deaf ears? Sputnik spoke with Dr Connal Parr; lecturer in History at the University of Northumbria for more.
Sputnik: Will Prime Minister Theresa May be able to convince Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to back her Brexit deal?
Dr Connal Parr: I think that we've seen Theresa May be criticised and be challenged for the Tory leadership by her colleagues before today fairly impotently in the past, but I would be very surprised if these current meetings; given some of the rhetoric that we are hearing from both the ERG and other members of the Conservative Party, doesn't lead to a focusing of minds within the Tory party, which finds this from Theresa May a bit beyond the pale for them.
It's a very big gamble on her part, in the sense of; by reaching out to Labour, and by reaching out to Jeremy Corbyn, who Jacob Rees-Mogg described as a Marxist and someone who is pretty abhorrent to most Tories, is really a bit of a bridge too far for the Conservative party.
I understand May is doing this for the first time in some ways, for the actual country to avoid the no deal Brexit situation, and the UK crashing out without a deal, and it's probably the best thing for her to do.
Sputnik: Would the EU necessarily back a further extension of Article Fifty?
Dr Connal Parr: What strikes me when I look at the coverage of this situation; comparing the British media to the European media, is that the European media and the EU itself has been preparing some time for a no deal scenario, and there seems to be this sort of abstract world where people in the Conservative party, and the sympathetic media that sometimes exists for them in the UK, is having a debate about constant extensions, changes, negotiations for a new deal which they have been told constantly is not available to them as an option, and all the while, the EU for some time has been preparing for that scenario.
They've been preparing for that situation, and therefore they may not guarantee an extension. It would be interesting to see what Ireland's perspective on this is, because Ireland has the most to lose out because of the prospect of a hard border returning to the island of Ireland, which is what the backstop as a tool is meant to prevent.
Ireland might be the one who says hang on here; we do actually need an extension to this process to prevent this very damaging situation arising, which is also going to have a harmful impact on the Irish economy.
The views expressed in this article are solely those of Dr Connal Parrand do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.
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