• By Diego Sánchez and Adrian Waters

The past, the present and the future of Brexit


This article presents the political context of the current Brexit debacle and addresses the complex legal questions covering many Brexit eventualities.

The political aspect

On 12th December 2018 Theresa May faced a vote of no-confidence from her fellow Conservative Members of Parliament (MPs). She won by 200 to 117 votes, consequently retaining her premiership. However, the fact that more than a third of Conservative MPs voted against her is regarded by Brexiteers as a clear sign that the deal she struck with the EU is deeply unpopular within the UK’s governing party. One key reason why May survived was her pledge to resign before the next general election in 2022. With this promise she hoped to reassure MPs who feared that she would become an electoral drawback, but at the same time she risks damaging her own fragile authority.[1] As a matter of fact, talks between the main opposition force, the Labour Party, and the Democratic Unionist Party, are currently taking place in order to trigger a no-confidence motion in the House of Commons against the Government, which if enacted would further weaken May’s position as it would have the support of the hardline Tory Brexiteers who are against her.[2] This case drew comparisons with the 1990 Conservative leadership contest in which the then British premier Margaret Thatcher was running for re-election. She won the first round by 204 to 152 votes, but party ru