Brexit Roadmap; No deal is the default

Despite last night’s defeat for the Government on the Finance Bill amendment that limits setting aside funds for No Deal contingencies, Parliament still needs to vote for an alternative. But there is no majority for anything else, writes Helen Thomas of Blonde Money, one of the few analysts here in the UK that really understands all of the moving parts of the complex Brexit process. In this note she sets out MPs’ first preferences for what they want from Brexit, and also the numbers once certain factions club together. Thomas draws some conclusions from yesterday’s vote. #1: Theresa May needs Labour MP votes (highly unlikely), #2: Labour hold an impossible position (In the battle of The Great Protestor Jeremy vs The Great Administrator Theresa, no one will lead. Both positions are passive). #3: Events will force their hands. Here, A crisis is needed to break the deadlock, and Thomas sets out 4 options could prevent No Deal: 1) Pragmatists of all parties fall into line and pass May’s Deal (with EU concessions?) 2) A new government emerges via a 14 day post-No Confidence period or an Elections. 3) A government of national unity (GNU) emerges as Labour MPs defy the whip. 4) Article 50 is extended to allow for either a Second Referendum or a General Election. The final conclusion is that a new era of political instability is upon us, writes Thomas, so expect maximum mayhem in Mid to late February and again in April.