Everything depends on Theresa May? The House of Commons yesterday rejected a second referendum on United Kingdom membership of the European Union and rejected the amendments seeking a three-month transitional period for a softer Brexit.
In particular, 334 MEPs voted against rejecting a second amendment by TIG, Sarah Wollaston. Eighteen Labor MEPs opposed Jeremy Corbyn's instruction to abstain. It points out that even if Labor officially supported a second vote in the House of Commons, there is no majority vote in this House, not at the moment, and most likely not.
Parliament's supporters for the referendum campaign, which has also largely followed the campaign's mandate to abstain in the second referendum vote, have long believed that a majority vote would only be possible if there was a clear decision between this and the cliff. Many others at Westminster assume that no deal is made, because if they decide between a cliff and something else, they decide for something else.
But will they? It is March 15th, and while an expansion after March 29th is anything but sure now, should not the heads concentrate a little now? The truth is that the second vote in the second referendum yesterday led to anti-Brexit parties using Remain votes from Labor. This seems to be quite successful in SNP and Plaid Cymru in Scotland and Wales, and the Greens, the TIG and the Liberal Democrats hope to do so in England with equal success. There are no signs of losing party benefits from there.
As far as Labor is concerned, these 18 MPs were so keen to send a message to their constituents that they had pledged themselves to Brexit, that they would not even embrace an application condemned to defeat and would not be ready to end the anger Risking Women By supporting the resignation agreement, its members show that there are no signs of averting a political advantage over the main opposition.
But at least the various opposition parties can agree on an extension instead of arguing over the cliff on March 29th. The conservative party can not even do that. A number of Ministers, including seven Cabinet Ministers, agreed with the rejection of May by rejecting the House's request to extend the Article 50 deadline, which was accepted only thanks to the support of the opposition parties. A majority of Tory MPs voted against the extension.
It is an open secret that many of the Conservative MPs who voted against the extension agree that one is needed, and some even prefer a Norwegian Brexit.
The question, which at this point is still confident that "good sense" will prevail, is: when exactly? I remember when the common opinion was that in February MEPs would assess their political interests over their political interests. Then it was the end of February. Then in the beginning of March. Then the middle. Now it seems as if the heads are concentrating when the real cliff comes into view at the end of the expansion in June.
The conventional wisdom may still be right. But we should all be nervously aware that the moment of truth is being pushed back and that in fact it can never arrive.