Politics & Policy

The Corner

Will Theresa May Try to Stay?

The BBC reports that the prime minister hasn’t decided what to do next:

Theresa May’s mood was “calm” and “sombre” when she addressed staff at Conservative Party HQ – but she “didn’t directly refer to her future”, BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg says.

She didn’t say she would stay, and the fact she didn’t mention this could mean she hasn’t made up her mind yet, and “puts the chance of resignation on the table”, Laura adds.

Indeed. But, in concert with reports that May has called for a “period of stability,” it also “could mean” that she may be hoping to hang on. 

If so, that would be a mistake. Britain had a “stable” government when May called the election. Sure, it wasn’t the government that she ideally wanted, but she had a majority and it wasn’t going anywhere. She, not external forces, changed that. Now she’s weaker and Britain is less “stable.” If the Tories stay in power, it will be in coalition with the DUP.

What, I wonder, is the case for her staying on? Having become prime minister solely because the last one resigned, she can hardly claim to be indispensable; she was not, let’s say, the obvious or much-desired choice. Having made this campaign about herself and then so spectacularly blown it, she cannot claim a mandate from the people. And, having materially diminished herself, her party, and the prospects for Brexit, she cannot credibly sell herself as a “steady” or “wise” hand. Yes, if she resigns, things will be even more dramatic, and the Brexit negotiations may have to be delayed a few weeks. But what is worse: A month or so of turmoil, or Britain’s sending into battle a mortally wounded emissary? May’s whole pitch was “give me your proxy.” The British people declined to do so. How she can stay is beyond me.

Most Popular


The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More
Film & TV

Why We Can’t Have Wakanda

SPOILERS AHEAD Black Panther is a really good movie that lives up to the hype in just about every way. Surely someone at Marvel Studios had an early doubt, reading the script and thinking: “Wait, we’re going to have hundreds of African warriors in brightly colored tribal garb, using ancient weapons, ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More