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Wed Dec 5, 2018, 04:35 PM

Are Theresa May's Days Numbered as Prime Minister

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.cnn.com/cnn/2018/12/05/uk/brexit-vote-theresa-may-analysis-intl/index.html

As AMLO in Mexico begins to start his term and the Democrats are planning their first moves in a little over a month as the majority in the House, it begs the question. Where else is the left winning around the world? With Theresa May's repudiation by the House of Commons yesterday there is a growing question of when not if she resigns once Brexit negotiations officially fail next week like is expected. This will likely trigger a new election with Jeremy Corbyn as the front-runner going in.

So my question to my fellow DU'ers is how excited are you with the western alliance seemingly coming back together after it was damaged by the election of Trump and Brexit in the UK? Are you confident or has Bolsonaro's victory in Brazil given you more trepidation about the future?

22 replies, 1130 views

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Arrow 22 replies Author Time Post
Reply Are Theresa May's Days Numbered as Prime Minister (Original post)
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 OP
YessirAtsaFact Dec 2018 #1
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #2
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #4
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #10
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #14
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #16
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #19
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #20
BannonsLiver Dec 2018 #15
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #18
TreasonousBastard Dec 2018 #3
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #6
TreasonousBastard Dec 2018 #22
grantcart Dec 2018 #5
malaise Dec 2018 #7
muriel_volestrangler Dec 2018 #8
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #9
OnDoutside Dec 2018 #13
ZeroSomeBrains Dec 2018 #17
Denzil_DC Dec 2018 #12
OnDoutside Dec 2018 #11
brooklynite Dec 2018 #21

Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 04:43 PM

1. I hope so

Brexit is stupid. Bad for Britain and the EU.

Maybe a new PM could figure that out.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 04:48 PM

2. I don't see May and the UK Tories' current problems as "the left winning", I'm afraid.

The opposition to her proposed deal with the EU comes from left, right and center, from a variety of motives.

I'm not a great fan of Corbyn (though I've defended him from what I felt were unwarranted attacks on the UK forum in the past). He's currently playing at being as much of a Brexiter as May is - in fact, his main challenge recently has been that her negotiated version of Brexit isn't hard enough to fulfil the "wishes" of the majority who voted for it - and what alternative plans he and the Labour Party front bench have made public so far seem little or no improvement on what May's offering, and probably have less chance of being accepted by the EU.

If May does stand down next week, it might trigger an election, but it's more likely it might only trigger a Tory leadership contest. The timescales required for either aren't favorable in terms of a better outcome from the Brexit negotiations.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 05:20 PM

4. Interesting

I'm in the US so I don't know everything regarding how elections are triggered in the UK but even if they just do a reshuffling of leadership wouldn't they have to get a Brexit deal that satisfies the members of parliament? Many of the parties aligned with May sound like they want an election so it seems like things are moving towards an election from my standpoint.

As for Corbyn I think he's in a tough position in relation to Brexit. He was against Brexit but once it happened he feels like he has to fulfill the wishes of UK voters even if tje decision was a horrible mistake. If he kills Brexit with another referendum then does the right-wing feel more emboldened and think they had Brexit stolen from them? I'm rooting for some way where the UK stays in the EU and that Corbyn can win so that a leftist government can implement some reforms that some of us in the US are pining for like a tax on carbon and UBI.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Reply #4)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:29 PM

10. If you're finding it hard to follow in the US, it's not much easier for us in the UK!

Last edited Wed Dec 5, 2018, 07:25 PM - Edit history (1)

I'll try to address your points without getting too long-winded (wish me luck!).

On how general elections are triggered, that changed when the Tories and Liberal Democrats formed a coalition government (there was no such thing as a fixed term of government before then), and this explains it better than I probably could:

Who decides to call a general election?

Under provisions in the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011, Parliament is dissolved automatically after 5 years. Prior to the Act, dissolution was a personal prerogative of the Queen. The Act has replaced the prerogative and now Parliament is dissolved automatically 25 working days before a general election.

The Act provides that parliamentary general elections take place every five years on the first Thursday in May. It also provides for early general elections if either the House of Commons votes for an early general election or following the failure of the House to agree a vote of confidence in a new government within 14 days of a vote of no confidence in the government holding office.

https://www.parliament.uk/about/faqs/house-of-commons-faqs/genelec2010faq/#jump-link-7


So there'll be too little time before Parliament's Christmas recess (20 December 2018-7 January 2019) for that schedule to play out this year.

A Tory leadership contest would be similarly long-winded. If May didn't resign but there were moves to depose her:

A no confidence vote is triggered if 15% of Tory MPs write a letter to the chairman of the party's so-called "1922 committee".

The Conservatives currently have 315 valid MPs so 48 of them would need to write such letters to challenge Mrs May.

Once that threshold has been reached, the chairman will announce a no confidence vote is being held probably in the next day.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/conservative-leadership-challenge-may-election-12883000


If that vote went against her, she'd be forced to resign.

In either case (resignation of deposition), if only one candidate to replace her comes forward, then he or she would be elected by the party without a lot more rigmarole, but:


If several names are put forward to lead the party, then a vote is held among Conservative MPs to whittle the field down to two.

Votes are held among MPs each Tuesday and Thursday, and each time the candidate with the least support is eliminated.

...

Once there are two candidates, they are both put to the Tory membership - around 100,000 or so people - to choose the new leader.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/conservative-leadership-challenge-may-election-12883000


The last time the Tories had a leadership election (when May was voted leader) was after David Cameron resigned. He did so on June 23, 2016 (when the Brexit referendum results were known), but remained in post till his successor was elected. There were multiple candidates, so the ballot process was initially planned to take from July 5 to September 9. Because of her strong showing in the first ballot and the rapid implosion of her rivals, May was elected party leader and therefore PM on July 11 - very quickly for such a contest - without party members having a vote, which could have taken a lot longer.

So if we're looking at a new Tory PM, it won't be till the New Year, even if one candidate emerges unopposed and it goes as quickly as last time.

There's a lot of noise from some politicians about a general election, but I'm not clear how much of that is bluff (nor whether it would get us a better government in terms of Brexit or anything else). Current opinion polls generally consistently put Labour at around 5% behind the Tories. In normal times (these aren't normal times), the way our electoral college works, Labour needs to be around 8-9% ahead to gain an overall majority of seats. Polls also show a very poor performance by Corbyn himself even against May.

For a general election to be held, there's that 14 days' wait after a vote of no confidence to see if another government can be cobbled together (there's talk of a cross-party alliance at the moment, but I can't see that happening), and if not, Parliament must be dissolved. Then the parties have to hold hustings to decide on each constituency's candidate, the campaign has to take place etc. etc. This usually takes around six weeks. Despite the shortness of time before Brexit happens in March 2019, shortening that by much would risk yet another set of uninformed decisions by the electorate. It would also be very rare to have an election in January-February at the best of times (these aren't the best of times), because of the weather apart from anything else.

As for Corbyn and Labour, probably best not to get me started (I'm in Scotland and in a general election I'd vote for the SNP, which has been entirely sane and adult about the whole Brexit issue right from the day of the referendum), but I'll try to restrain myself. Corbyn called for Article 50 to be triggered on the very morning of the result, and Labour's stance ever since can charitably be described as "confused/confusing". It's tried to have it all ways. It's run scared of UKIP "stealing" votes from it in seats which were once its heartland, but taken for granted those of its constituencies that voted Remain. Its membership (swelled, ironically, by the Corbyn wave, though that's dwindling somewhat) is overwhelmingly in favour of Remain. Labour shadow cabinet members contradict each other, sometimes on the same day, and I'd be hard put, even as someone who tries to pay attention to politics, to explain to you what their position is at any one time.

Here's Ken McCluskey (the main power behind Labour's throne) in today's Guardian:

Unite leader warns Labour against backing second EU referendum

The Unite general secretary, Len McCluskey, has privately told Labour MPs the party should have severe reservations about backing a fresh Brexit referendum, saying voters could see it as a betrayal.

The deep scepticism from one of Jeremy Corbyn’s closest and most powerful supporters is likely to unnerve MPs and campaigners hoping the party is warming to the idea of a fresh Brexit vote.

Labour’s deputy leader, Tom Watson, hit back at McCluskey’s warning, laying bare the tensions in the party.

“To suggest it represents a ‘betrayal’ grossly distorts Labour’s position and is deeply unhelpful to those seeking a solution to an an issue that is reaching crisis proportions,” he told the Guardian.

https://amp.theguardian.com/politics/2018/dec/05/unite-leader-warns-labour-against-backing-second-eu-referendum


So plenty of coherence among the opposition there ...

The fear of "the right-wing" is something that pisses me right off.

What are they afraid of? You don't win elections by saying that your opponents are right, so don't vote for them. You set out clear, principled positions and you stick to them (as the SNP have done). There's enough confusion and enough votes up for grabs right now that a clear anti-Brexit stance (however it has to be dressed up to make it palatable - May's current deal is unpalatable enough that they might even be able to attract some former Leavers) would quite possibly be a vote-winner. Certainly, if the polls are to be believed, Labour's current stance isn't working.

If they're afraid of civil unrest, well, that didn't seem to be a decisive factor during the miners' strike or any other struggle that's taken to the streets, and I'd expect any violence to be dealt with swiftly and firmly. Or do people like me in the Remain camp have to threaten violence before the 48% of us and counting have our wishes taken seriously?

I know the idea of a Labour government seems attractive to a number of people in the USA, but I'm afraid I can't muster much enthusiasm for the sort of doctrinaire and terminally muddled or downright incompetent government it looks like Corbyn might form even if Labour won.

Sorry this was so long, You were warned. Thanks and commiserations if you made it this far!

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:43 PM

14. Thank you

I read all of that although I'm still a little confused about it all. It still disappoints me that the Torries would remain in power with all their cuts to the NIH and such. Corbyn would seem to have some really good positions but that Brexit nut seems difficult to crack to the satisfaction needed to get a majority in Parliament. Here's to hoping for the best!

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Reply #14)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:50 PM

16. Thanks for the good wishes!

There are a number of us DUers from the UK, one or two have posted downthread, and they all have views worth listening to.

We've posted quite a bit about Brexit on the United Kingdom forum before and since the vote, but we don't do so as much nowadays, I think partly because it's so fucking depressing and we're generally Remainers who feel totally stranded by the perversion of our current parliamentary system and the way the country's going while our views don't seem to be taken seriously in any of the national debates.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #16)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 07:04 PM

19. Yeah the Depressing Situation in the World is Real

Trump has really got me down. Especialy considering how screwed up the US Senate is and how we're all crossing our fingers every night that all the Democratic Supreme Court judges stay alive until 2021. For me I don't know how realistic it will be that the Dems will have a majority in the Senate without the inclusion of Washington DC and Puerto Rico as US states.

But we in the left across the world have to stay together in these tough times and fight. We have been through tougher times no matter how hard it is to believe it on some days.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Reply #19)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 07:07 PM

20. Well, at its best, that's what DU is good for.

I've enjoyed chatting with you.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Reply #10)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:45 PM

15. Terrific, informative post

I am a hopeless Anglophile who has been to the UK 4 times since 2014 and will return in March. Given that I have so much affection for the UK, I try to immerse myself in as much of the culture as possible which includes watching Question Time and Prime Ministers Questions. My overly simple view of Corbyn is Labour would be in better position to capitalize on a general election if someone else was set to become PM should the party win. I like a lot of Corbyn’s message but I get the sense he’s a real tough sell to a lot of Britons as PM.

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Response to BannonsLiver (Reply #15)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:53 PM

18. Thanks.

Many of the policies Labour adopted after Corbyn came to power have always polled much better than Corbyn himself (maybe that sounds like a familiar pattern in the US!), so you're not far off the mark, I reckon.

The problem would be replacing Corbyn without ditching the positive policies, because Labour is not a uniformly left-wing party and is very prone to infighting.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 04:49 PM

3. These things seem to be cyclical...

a generation or two of rightwing rule and a large part of the population gets the idea that it doesn't work after all.

Then, another couple of generations of leftwing rule and people get the idea that's not so hot, either.

You simply can't get away from it-- in democracies, the population votes for whoever promises the most stuff. When the promises prove impossible, said population forgets the other guys weren't so good at it either and votes the opposition back in.

Eventually, authoritarians try to take over as the ultimate solution. Too often they become the final solution.

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Response to TreasonousBastard (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 05:24 PM

6. Authoritarianism is a horrible problem right now

That's why I brought up Bolsonaro in Brazil. He and Trump are so similar and both Brazil the US and Italy and other countries have this thirst for fascist policies. The sane majority needs to confront them but so many are indifferent to the problems or don't vote.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Reply #6)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 10:31 PM

22. Poland, Hungary, Israel, Turkey...

and maybe Austria and a few others are turning their backs on modern progress.

We did, too, with the election of Trump.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 05:22 PM

5. Technically all of our days are numbered

Question is how big is the number

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 05:27 PM

7. Interesting post

I think she's in big trouble but I'm not sure the Labour Party is organized.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 05:40 PM

8. Saying Corbyn is the "front-runner" is a bit optimistic

Opinion polls put the Tory and Labour percentage of the vote within the margin of error, with the notional lead swapping: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion_polling_for_the_next_United_Kingdom_general_election#2018

The bookmakers think the Tories are slightly more likely to get the most seats - odds of 19/20, compared to 11/10 for Labour: https://www.oddschecker.com/politics/british-politics

Though those odds are quite confusing - Corbyn is only 4/1 to be the next PM, but the odds for May to be out by April 2019 are over 50%. This indicates they think there's a good chance May will resign the party leadership, and hand over to another Tory (though nobody has a good idea who).

With the odds for 'most seats' so close, another hung parliament would look like the most likely result of a general election. How that'd work out, who knows - the DUP would again offer a Tory leader support, but explcitly for a hard Brexit now - which might still alienate enough Tories to sink it. But if Corbyn needed SNP support, they might hesitate, unless they see a way of fixing Brexit and taking credit.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #8)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:08 PM

9. Thanks for the in-depth analysis

Maybe it's wishful thinking on my part but I would feel confident that Labour's message would win the day. May has had a difficult time with the Brexit deal and having to show some alliance with Trump which I feel could be Corbyn's message. I guess we will all see how things go next week.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Reply #9)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:38 PM

13. What message ? Labour have many messages, such is the division. The only positive is that Keir

Starmer appears to be the person the Remainers are rallying around, and he seems to be putting Corbyn under pressure to get his arse in gear.

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Response to OnDoutside (Reply #13)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:52 PM

17. From what I hear on economics it's very progressive

I have heard that if a company wants to go public go bankrupt or change ownership that they would have to have the workers sign off on it or allow them to buy the company with a low interest rate and capital supplied by their federal reserve. That sounded like something that would help transfer power from the rich to the workers and help income inequality.

But I also hear the inconsistencies from Labour on Brexit. I just want to hold out hope for you guys to figure it out.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #8)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:37 PM

12. From what I've seen and heard up here,

as usual, Labour's leadership have been sniffy about any thought of a formal agreement with the SNP, though some prominent members have been impressed with Sturgeon's leadership on Brexit and don't seem to be against it in principle.

The SNP's priority would be to avoid Brexit (for a few reasons - e.g. not wanting a resentful economic basket case as a future neighbour if independence came about, the problems with a land border, as the expectation is that Scotland would seek at least EFTA/EEA and customs union membership if independent, though it would be an issue even without that - a lot easier if both countries were in the EU or thereabouts, and the fact that it stands to suffer badly if Brexit goes ahead), but the obvious trade-off would be agreement to hold another independence referendum once the dust settled. Whether Yes would be more likely to succeed with or without Brexit is a question that nobody knows the answer to.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 06:35 PM

11. Yes but it depends on the size of her loss in the vote next week. She would have been gone ages ago

but for Corbyn.

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Response to ZeroSomeBrains (Original post)

Wed Dec 5, 2018, 07:25 PM

21. May's problem is with her own Party members; not seeing any strength on the part of Labour...



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