Theresa May’s Resignation Throws a Fractured Britain Into Further Turmoil – The New York Times

Mrs. May’s undoing came after her final, desperate effort to win passage of her withdrawal plan in Parliament. Conservative lawmakers reacted with fury after she softened her original Brexit plan, notably by allowing Parliament to vote on whether to remain in a customs union with the European bloc and also on whether it wanted another public referendum on the deal.

Those ideas were anathema to hard-line Brexiteers who saw them as a betrayal of the 2016 referendum result, but seen as far too mild by pro-Europeans in the Labour Party.

Mrs. May’s successor will inherit a daunting political calculus, within the divided Conservative Party and inside Parliament.

Mrs. May will continue as a member of Parliament after stepping down as prime minister.

Her downfall echoed that of another Conservative Party leader undone by divisions over Europe, Margaret Thatcher, complete with the sexist overtones of some of Mrs. May’s adversaries this week suggesting her husband step in to tell her she had to resign.

By the end of Friday, Mrs. May’s plea for a compromise was already running into stiff headwinds, with a staunch Brexiteer and former leader of the Conservative Party, Iain Duncan Smith, writing, “No, compromise in search of the lowest common denominator is not the way forward. It becomes a dirty word.”


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