Britain crushed between Brexit, general election uncertainty


As it is now certain that Brexit will not happen on Oct. 31, the whole situation has shifted as Britain is doomed to experience yet another period of internal political uncertainty.

Following the British Parliament’s decision to reject Boris Johnson’s proposed legislative timetable on Tuesday, Johnson was forced to ask the EU for an extension against his will. He had staked his career on getting Brexit done by Oct. 31, following his victory of the ruling Conservative Party leadership to become prime minister in a minority government. It is apparent that he will not be able to perform this task, which is both beneficial and detrimental to the British public in a general sense, given the current circumstances. Beneficial, since the Parliament’s decision helped reduce the possibility of a “no-deal” Brexit, which is accepted by all parties involved to be the last option on the table, since it would be the most economically, sociologically and politically damaging outcome out of all the possibilities.

Additionally, the EU will have more of a say on the issue and more time to analyze Johnson’s new deal. They also have the power to decide the deadline, which will play a part on how Britain’s internal politics will be shaped until the new deadline arrives. Last Friday, they were on the same page about delaying Brexit, but have still failed to come up with an exact date.

But there are also some detrimental elements to the Parliament’s decision. For better or for worse, Boris Johnson has been the only consistent and unchangeable agent during the whole process, and had naturally become a short-term hope for long-term comfort in some parts of the public’s eye. But now, it looks like his whole plan crumbled and came to a halt, and Britain has sunk into even more uncertainty than it ever had before.

Because of this, Johnson asked for an election, as he’s looking to solidify his political spot in order to be able to accomplish what he wanted from the very beginning. In a letter that he sent to opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, he mentioned that he would give Parliament more time to approve his Brexit deal by Nov.6, on account that lawmakers must back a December election. Adding this attempt, this has been the third try to push a forced snap vote. “Prolonging this paralysis into 2020 would have dangerous consequences,” he said. “If I win a majority in this election, we will then ratify the great new deal that I have negotiated, get Brexit done in January and the country will move on.” Corbyn, on the other hand, wants to wait for the EU’s decision on the delay before making any major decisions. He had stated that he could only back an election when a no-deal scenario was completely off the table. It seems that we are currently back to the Brexit hot-potato game and the ball has fallen on the EU once again.

Brexit has become a real burden that has completely paralyzed the entirety of Britain and also partially the EU. Following the ”Super Saturday” sitting of Parliament more than a week ago, hundreds of thousands marched in London against Brexit. Daily protests also take place in different areas of the U.K. The divisiveness is also rampant among the political parties, with MP’s from all parties resigning at an alarming rate. Even though Britain will continue to suffer from Brexit uncertainty in 2020, the EU had stated that their delay would be “with the view to allowing for the finalization of the ratification”. So it can be argued that all sides are willing to get things moving by being serious about Johnson’s deal. But as things stand, more than three years since Britons voted to leave, the fate of Brexit remains uncertain, ranging from a disorderly split at the end of this month, to another delay and a national election in bitterly divided Britain.