The UK is due to leave the bloc without a deal on April 12 if it does not pass an agreement or seek a longer delay before then. “Three years ago, ‘sorcerer’s apprentices’ in Britain sold the divorce from the European Union as the solution to the country’s problems,” Mrs Loiseau, who is leading Mr Macron’s party in the EU elections, told the news channel BFM TV. “Brexit was touted by Leavers as a magical elixir: ‘If we leave Europe we will be bigger and stronger.’ Three years later, no one in the UK is able to say where the country is going and how it plans to get there,” the former European Affairs minister said.
“It is up to the British to find their own solution. But this solution concerns us and we will bear the consequences of their choice. But we are prepared for all possible scenarios. A soft Brexit, which would mean an exit with a deal in place, or a no-deal exit.”
The MEP hopeful also said the British had “only just realised what the UK will lose by leaving the EU”.
MPs rejected Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal for a third time on Friday, leaving Britain’s divorce from the EU in disarray on the very day it was scheduled to quit the bloc.
The decision to reject the deal has left it totally unclear how, when or even whether Britain will leave the EU, and plunged the three-year Brexit drama to a deeper level of uncertainty.
“I fear we are reaching the limits of this process in this House,” Mrs May told Parliament after the defeat. “The implications of the House’s decision are grave.”
Mrs May had billed the vote as the last opportunity to ensure Britain left the EU in an orderly manner, urging lawmakers to put aside party differences and strongly-held beliefs.
But in a special sitting of Parliament, they voted 344-286 against the EU withdrawal agreement, finalised after two years of difficult negotiations with the bloc.
“The legal default now is that the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on April 12,” Mrs May said.
Within minutes of the vote, European Council President Donald Tusk said EU leaders would meet on April 10 to discuss Britain’s departure.
Most European leaders have expressed concern that there is now a very real chance Britain will leave without a deal, a messy scenario that could have severe economic consequences for both sides.
French lawmaker Hugues Renson, a member of Mr Macron’s ruling La République en Marche (LREM) party, echoed Mrs Loiseau’s Brexit fears in an interview with France Info radio on Saturday, saying the British faced tough times and an uncertain future.
“The British are up against the wall… The UK faces more difficulties than the EU,” Mr Renson said, adding that the bloc was “ready” for a no-deal exit on April 12.
“Brexit is the first element of the deconstruction of Europe, and the proof that lies can destroy Europe,” he continued, referring to claims Brexit had been sold to Britons on simplistic slogans.
“Europe is at a crossroads,” Mr Renson added, citing Brexit and the surge in support for populist parties across the bloc.
Britain now has less than two weeks to convince the 27 remaining members of the EU that it has an alternative way out of the deadlock, or face crashing out of the bloc on April 12 with no deal on post-Brexit ties with its largest trading ally.
This evening, MPs will attempt on Monday to agree on an alternative Brexit plan that could command majority cross-party support in Parliament. The options that have so far gathered most support involve closer ties to the EU, and a second referendum.
Opponents fear Brexit will make Britain poorer and divide the EU as it scrambles to cement its authority in the face of an increasingly inward-looking US and assertive China.
Supporters argue that while the divorce might bring some short-term instability, in the longer term it will allow the UK to strike its own trade deals around the world and thrive.