, 6 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
There are some very optimistic takes that a no deal #brexit is practically off the table because a majority in the house of Commons is against it. I am much more sceptical a no deal can be avoided, for five reasons:
1 Beware of confirmation bias: As late as when the withdrawal agreement was signed in November, many people in Berlin were convinced that the threat of no deal would be enough to get it passed. MPs would never risk no deal I was told when forecasting a strong rejection.
2 Don't overestimate resistance to No Deal. Over 60% of Conservative voters prefer a no deal Brexit to the deal and remaining, while even many Tory MPs regard the costs of no deal as overblown. It will not be easy to get a workable majority FOR an alternative.
3 Don't underestimate the power of the government. If May rejects all alternatives to her deal, no deal becomes even more likely. The government still is in control of the article 50 process, and May's Red lines rule out both a second referendum and a move to a much softer Brexit
4 the lack of a clear alternative: while there might be a theoretical majority against no deal, it is fully split on the alternatives. Without a clear leadership bringing the anti no deal forces together, no deal it is. That leadership is not coming from Jeremy Corbyn
5 The law: As @davidallengreen continues to stress, the merciless logic of article 50 will lead to no deal by automatic operation of law if no other decisions is taken. Hard to see at the moment where the majority and political force for such an alternative will come from /ends
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