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brexit people's voice Brais G. Rouco / Barcroft Images / Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Can a “No-Deal” Brexit Be Avoided?

British Prime Minister Theresa May's party is divided, her cabinet is split, and perhaps half its members are jostling to succeed her. To ensure an orderly withdrawal from the European Union, her government has only one option.

EDINBURGH – It is a near-tragedy that the United States and the United Kingdom – the two countries most identified with long-established stable constitutional frameworks – are now ranked among the world’s most dysfunctional democracies.

In the past, when Britain’s Parliament faced crises and appeared deadlocked, it proved capable of breaking the stalemate. Over two centuries, battles over electoral reform, the Corn Laws, free trade, the House of Lords, and the Irish question were eventually resolved by reform and compromise.

But now an all-consuming two-and-a-half-year debate over the UK’s relationship with Europe has overwhelmed Westminster and consumed Whitehall’s time, energy, and patience. And as the March 29 Brexit deadline approaches, neither the government nor Parliament seems capable of ending the impasse they have created.

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