The UK essentially now has three options, and each come

  with increasingly urgent logic.

  Option one: Approve the Withdrawal Agreement. The UK will then leave the EU on May 22 and enter the transition period. More on that later.

  If MPs vote the deal down, then they have a decision to make by April 11: stand in the EU parliamentary elections or don’t.

  Option two: Don’t stand in the elections, held between May 23-26, and leave the EU before then. It is unlikely that

any substantial new deal could be struck by this point. What the EU would do at this point is unclear.

  Option three: Stand in the elections and request a long extension. This makes softer Brexit all but inevitabl

e and undoing Brexit a lot more likely.At some point next week, May will bring her Withdrawal Agreement back to the Com

mons. She needs to flip 75 MPs if she’s to win by a margin of one. Given she dedicated some of this week to accusing them of betraying the nation, it’s hard to see

them feeling charitable. All the PM can hope for is that the EU has bought a new level of focus to London.

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