Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair has self-published a lengthy opinion piece arguing that June’s election result presents an opportunity for British politicians to avoid severe economic damage while leaving the European Union.
Prime Minister Theresa May called the snap election in order to bolster her mandate to negotiate the country’s exit from the bloc, or ‘Brexit’ as it is popularly called. But instead of a mandate, May’s Tories suffered a humiliating setback.
Blair acknowledged that both of the country’s main political entities – the Conservative Party and the Labour Party – remained wedded to pulling Britain out of the European Union’s single market.
The march toward Brexit was being driven by longstanding political divisions with in the Conservative Party, he said. The party, he argues, fears that abandoning Brexit or softening the terms would reopen internal divisions that have bedeviled the party over the past three decades.
Blair acknowledges – and laments – that his beloved Labour Party did not campaign against the Brexit. But he called Brexit the biggest political decision since World War II.