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Montevideo, November 21st 2018 - 06:22 UTC

PM May's snap election driven by “political opportunism”, claims EU parliament Brexit negotiator

Monday, April 24th 2017 - 11:26 UTC
Full article 20 comments
Verhofstadt Brussels believed chances of a deal were being eroded by PM May's “tough negotiating red lines” and lack of “political room for manoeuvre” Verhofstadt Brussels believed chances of a deal were being eroded by PM May's “tough negotiating red lines” and lack of “political room for manoeuvre”
“Indeed, it appears this election is being driven by the political opportunism of the party in government, rather than by the people they represent” “Indeed, it appears this election is being driven by the political opportunism of the party in government, rather than by the people they represent”

UK Prime Minister Theresa May's claims that a general election victory will strengthen her hand in Brexit negotiations have been called “nonsensical” by the European Parliament's chief Brexit coordinator. Guy Verhofstadt, a long-standing critic of Brexit, wrote in The Observer that it was “irrelevant” whether the Conservatives increased their majority.

 Instead, Mrs. May appeared to be driven by “political opportunism”, he said. Mrs May says the poll is needed because Westminster is divided over Brexit. The decision to hold the election on 8 June - three years earlier than scheduled - was approved last Wednesday, with 522 MPs in favor and 13 against.

Mr Verhofstadt wrote: “The theory espoused by some, that Theresa May is calling a general election on Brexit in order to secure a better deal with the EU, is nonsensical.

”Will the election of more Tory MPs give Theresa May a greater chance of securing a better Brexit deal? For those sitting around the table in Brussels, this is an irrelevance.“

Mr Verhofstadt added that many in Brussels believed the chances of a deal were being eroded by Mrs May's ”tough negotiating red lines“ and a lack of ”political room for manoeuvre“ domestically.

He said there was no guarantee ”a sprinkling of additional Conservative MPs on the backbenches“ would change this.

”Indeed, it appears this election is being driven by the political opportunism of the party in government, rather than by the people they represent,“ he added.

Mrs. May has argued that an increased Commons majority would strengthen her hand in the Brexit negotiations, making it more difficult for the opposition parties at home to obstruct her plans.

In her speech on 18 April, announcing the decision to call an election, she said: ”Division in Westminster will risk our ability to make a success of Brexit and it will cause damaging uncertainty and instability to the country.

“So we need a general election and we need one now, because we have at this moment a one-off chance to get this done while the European Union agrees its negotiating position and before the detailed talks begin.”

Categories: Politics, International.

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  • Clyde15

    Mr. hyperbole strikes again. You don't live in the UK, you have hardly been anywhere outside your province but you have a special insight in the affairs of the UK. All you have gleaned is from reports and articles of biased news agencies. Try speaking to the average Joe on the street if you want a more balanced view...but again you can't.

    It must fit your illogical unbalanced view of the UK.



    The UK is worse than Venezuela ? Twelve more Venezuelans lost their lives on Friday in violence associated with a wave of anti-government demonstrations,

    Do you see riots outside ex PM's houses a la Argentina. “According to the Rio Gallegos media this is the second time in the month that the governor or Santa Cruz had to lock herself in. Last April 4, it happened at Government House where she had to wait for over eight hours for the protestors and demonstrators to lift the siege.”

    You probably think that this is normal.....it is for Argentina.

    Mrs. May is probably correct in saying that it will strengthen her hand....IN THE UK PARLIAMENT. not that it will get the UK a better deal in negotiations. It will stifle dissent from her detractors if she can get a larger majority in Parliament.

    Both sides in the Brexit negotiations will have to compromise or both will suffer.

    If the EU want to make the UK suffer as an example then I think we should withdraw military cooperation and let them stand on their own feet without calling on the UK for support. We have shed enough blood in two world wars to prove we were good Europeans. We should selfishly look to our own interests.

    By the way, did you see the French results ?
    If Le Pen gets in for France, goodbye EU anyway.

    Apr 24th, 2017 - 01:23 pm +6
  • The Voice

    Nostrils doesnt want to understand, he views everything through a blind anti British prism. He is not stupid, just a racist bigot working off his obvious frustrations and low self esteem by posting ludicrous rubbish.

    Kayne summed it up - NeanderTroll!

    Apr 24th, 2017 - 03:36 pm +5
  • golfcronie

    Of course it is Guy, of course you want to strengtten ones hand so would you and so would I in the circumstances, and I dare to say so would you AO

    Apr 24th, 2017 - 12:25 pm +3
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