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The Prime Minister is could ditch her Brexit deal and endure a two-year delay if MPs continue to vote against her.
Theresa May will refrain from forcing another vote on the deal she has spent two years negotiating, unless she is convinced she has enough support to get it passed, according to The Sun.
As the proposed departure day looms, May has said that if MPs fail to back her Brexit deal then Brussels could enforce a lengthy delay on negotiations and potentially prevent the UK leaving the European Union altogether.
She warned that if MPs did not back her deal before Thursday’s European Council summit “we will not leave the EU for many months, if ever”.
In a column taking aim at MPs seeking rival versions of Brexit, May said: “If the proposal were to go back to square one and negotiate a new deal, that would mean a much longer extension – almost certainly requiring the United Kingdom to participate in the European Parliament elections in May.
“The idea of the British people going to the polls to elect MEPs three years after voting to leave the EU hardly bears thinking about.
“There could be no more potent symbol of Parliament’s collective political failure.
“All this makes the choice now facing MPs clearer than it has ever been. If Parliament can find a way to back the Brexit deal before European Council, the UK will leave the EU this spring, without having to take part in the European elections, and we can get on with building our future relationship with the EU.
“If it cannot, we will not leave the EU for many months, if ever.”
Despite two humiliating defeats, possibility of Brexit being delayed or overturned in a second referendum is swinging some Eurosceptics reluctantly behind the deal ahead of a third vote on the package.
Backbench rebel Daniel Kawczynski publicly indicated he will now back the Prime Minister’s plan.
But so far the number of Tories publicly switching positions has amounted to a trickle rather than the flood the Prime Minister needs to overturn the 149-vote defeat for the deal she suffered on Tuesday.
Shrewsbury and Atcham MP Mr Kawczynski acknowledged that the Prime Minister’s deal was now the “only game in town”.
His comments came after former cabinet minister Esther McVey, who resigned over the Brexit deal, suggested she and other MPs could now back it, even though it was “rubbish” and North Wiltshire MP James Gray appealed to fellow members of the Brexiteer European Research Group (ERG) to get the “obnoxious” deal over the line.
But other ERG figures played down the prospect of large numbers getting behind the deal when it is brought back for a vote.
Former Brexit secretary David Davis said the PM’s deal was “capable of rescue” if the negotiating strategy was changed and experienced trade negotiators were brought in to work with the EU.
Writing in The Sunday Times, he added: “Judging by last week the alternative would be a cascade of chaos, eventually ending in a remainer attempt, first to delay Brexit by a long time and then reverse it.”