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Will Brexit Bring Down Theresa May's Government?

The Chequers Plan and Its Discontents

British Prime Minister Theresa May addresses a news conference during a European Union leaders summit in Brussels, October 2017.  Francois Lenoir / REUTERS

Brexit was always going to involve a tricky tradeoff between satisfying the political pressures at home to reduce immigration and diversify the United Kingdom’s regulatory regime on the one hand, and facing the reality of life outside the European Union’s markets for a country deeply embedded in them on the other. This tradeoff has been compounded by another: Theresa May’s tenure as British prime minister has required her to navigate the tensions between Leavers and Remainers in her own parliamentary majority while negotiating with the European Union on the terms of Brexit. These various tensions have up to now been resolved by stalling. But the fast-approaching deadline for agreeing to the conditions for the United Kingdom’s departure from the EU and to move to the transitional phase of Brexit means that real choices have to be made. These choices have placed a time bomb under the

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