16/03/2019
16 Mar 2019

Brexit meltdown

16 Mar 2019

Brexit meltdown

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Features
Katy BallsKaty Balls
Will there be an election?

When a British government loses control over parliament, the natural remedy is to hold a general election. Why prolong everyone’s agony? But despite Theresa May having now failed twice to pass her signature Brexit deal, there is no sign she is willing to go back to the country. Jeremy Corbyn is keen for an early election to break the deadlock and others are beginning to agree with him. Asked this week what would happen if the government’s deal was rejected for a second time, a cabinet minister replied: ‘an election in two weeks’ time’.

Will there be an election?
James Forsyth
It’s not over yet

Almost three years have passed since Britain voted to leave the European Union, and yet we are still no closer to a Brexit resolution than we were on that June morning. No one is in control and this country’s whole system of governance is creaking. We are in an interregnum that shows no sign of ending. What is remarkable about this moment in our history is that something must break the impasse. This means that, although Theresa May’s deal suffered the biggest defeat ever for a piece of government business and was defeated a second time by a three-figure margin, it is not dead yet.

It’s not over yet
Isabel Hardman
A dose of understanding

What a baffling group of people anti-vaxxers are. They rail against one of the miracles of modern medicine, peddling scare stories about vaccines which had nearly eradicated many deadly childhood illnesses in the developed world. Baffling, of course, is too soft a word for many: they’re dangerous, because their anti-science views don’t just put their own children at risk, but wider society. The uptake of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine in Britain is at 87.

A dose of understanding
Tom Goodenough
Bible bashers

Being a street preacher can be a thankless business. Since moving to Britain from Nigeria nine years ago, 64-year-old Oluwole Ilesanmi has toured the country reading aloud from the Bible, spending hours outside train stations, urging people to see the light. Sometimes he makes a convert; most of the time his preaching falls on deaf ears. Last month, it resulted in him being arrested. Saturday 23 February began like a typical day for Ilesanmi.

Bible bashers
Fiona Lensvelt
A modern mysticism

I first met a tarot reader in a hotel lobby in central London on my birthday four years ago. I was a book critic at the time and was aware that the cards had inspired writers from W.B. Yeats to T.S. Eliot and Italo Calvino — perhaps there’s a novel in this, I thought. This was serious research. I was less interested in my destiny than I was in the way tarot worked. That was just as well because no sooner had I sat down than my reader piped up: ‘This has been an especially trying time for you and I’m afraid that it isn’t going to get easier.

A modern mysticism
Douglas Murray
Bloody liar

It is more than 15 years since the Bloody Sunday soldiers last appeared in public. For months I sat in the room with them to watch their evidence at Lord Saville’s inquiry. And while Lionel Shriver is right that the sight of terrorists benefiting from an immunity denied to our soldiers is grotesque, there are competing qualms. Not only because British soldiers should be held to a higher standard than terrorists.

Bloody liar
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