Ever since the referendum back in 2016, Brexit has dominated the news. The UK voted to leave the European Union by a majority of 51.9% to 48.1% yet, three years later, little progress has been made.
The division in British society caused by Brexit shows no sign of healing – in fact, neither side of the argument seem open to compromise. For Brexiteers in Government, “Leave Means Leave”, even if this does result in a No Deal situation. Meanwhile, polls show that a majority in the UK now want to Remain, and the Liberal Democrats are gaining support for their ant-Brexit stance.
Their attempts to deliver the “Will of the people” have cost two Prime Ministers their jobs so far. David Cameron, who called the referendum, resigned when the result became known, and Theresa May, who negotiated a deal with the EU, left office when Leave supporting MPs in her own party refused to back her deal.
Now we have a new Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, who says he will deliver Brexit “Do or die”. He was elected by Conservative Party members on the back of this promise but, within days of his first parliamentary sitting as PM, his majority was gone. It’s hard to see how he will be able to get Parliament’s approval for his plans when his predecessor could not – even though she had a majority.
It’s often said that people have had enough of Brexit and want politicians to “get on with it”. But, with neither side giving an inch, the negotiations keep dragging on. Many people believe that, once the UK leaves the EU, it will all be over, and life will return to normal. Sadly, if the UK does leave the EU without a deal, that will just be the start. Negotiations will go on, possibly for years, before a trade agreement is reached.
But not all of us have had enough of Brexit. Activists and campaigners on both sides feel passionately about their cause. Even if you are not that concerned with the outcome (there must be someone out there who feels like that - right?) you cannot deny that we live in interesting days. It’s hard to remember a time when Governments were being taken to court or MPs were branded “traitors”. But events like these don’t even raise an eyebrow anymore. Such is the effect that Brexit has had on our political class.
For those of you who are interested in Brexit, whether you are a “Brexiteer” or a “Remoaner”, we’ve written these quizzes which will test your knowledge of Britain’s relationship with our fellow Europeans, from our long and drawn-out attempts to join the EEC, through the campaigns for a referendum, the result, and the aftermath.
Anything can change in politics – and quickly! To keep up with events, we’ll be adding more quizzes to this section in the coming weeks, so keep your eyes peeled!
|British Membership of the European Union|
|The Referendum Campaign|
|The Referendum Result|
|Theresa May and Brexit|
|PM Johnson’s Parliament Before Prorogation|