Sturgeon calls May a 'lame duck leader' after confidence vote

British Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday won by a large margin a confidence vote by her fellow Conservative members of parliament.

Over a third of Conservative MPs voted against Theresa May remaining as Conservative leader as she survived an attempt to oust her, but conceded she could not lead the party into the next general election.

Theresa May will tell her warring MPs that today's vote in her leadership is about Brexit, not about who will lead the Conservatives into the next general election.

European leaders have said any assurances they deliver can not contradict the accord agreed with the Prime Minister.

Brady told the BBC he had spoken to the prime minister and noted she was "keen that matters be resolved as quickly as is reasonably possible".

Other MPs indicated that Mrs May had promised to find a "legally binding solution" to ensuring that the United Kingdom does not get permanently trapped in a backstop arrangement to keep the Irish border open after Brexit - despite the EU's insistence that no binding commitments are on offer.

As I said earlier, European Union leaders "want to help" Theresa May, but they see her request for an addendum to the Withdrawal Agreement as in practice opening up the Withdrawal Agreement.

It is noted that while the Prime Minister has survived the vote of no confidence in her leadership, in reality little has changed.

The British pound, which has lost 25 cents against the United States dollar since the 2016 referendum, fell on the confidence vote but then rose to 1.2548 on news that Brexit might have to be delayed.

Pro EU protesters demonstrate outside the British Houses of Parliament in central London, Dec. 11, 2018 after British Prime Minister Theresa May's decision to postpone the Brexit deal Meaningful Vote. "I will support her through current events, but I can not vote for a motion that I believe will irrevocably weaken the United Kingdom for years to come".

Webb said: "There might some elements of the European Research Group who are so disillusioned and angry that if Labour called a vote of no confidence they actually could either abstain on that or maybe even vote with the opposition".

If she loses she will be removed as party and government leader.

British constitutional procedures would then give them 14 days to find another prime minister that would support their hard line.

Professor Menon said: "What we know in the structural sense is that we're exactly back where we started - she has got a deal that no one likes that there aren't the numbers to get through parliament".

While it's now known exactly how many of her MPs have no confidence in her, this only matters insofar as the likelihood of getting the withdrawal agreement and political declaration on the future EU-UK relationship through parliament.

Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg, who had campaigned for weeks to trigger a confidence vote in Mrs May's leadership, said he was not persuaded by the Prime Minister's assurances.

It is not at all clear how and whether they come to her rescue.

May's sternest opponents within the ERG hinted that they did not entirely believe she will stick to her pledge to go before 2022.

If Mrs May can not secure legally-binding changes to her deal and it falls in the Commons, she has pledged to bring forward a motion by January 21 laying out what she will do next.

The recent turn of events in the tortuous Brexit process have revealed a continuous belief in the United Kingdom of a right to exceptionalism.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, who now holds the rotating European Union presidency, suggested there could be a special Brexit summit in January to agree "additional assurances" which could be attached to the Political Declaration on the UK's future relationship with the EU.

However, the opposition Labour party has hinted that it is close to tabling its own no-confidence motion in May's government.


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