a bitter melon

Brexit: Theresa May

Today Cameron will be offering his resignation to the Queen:

BBC -- David Cameron applauded by MPs as he prepares to hand over to Theresa May

The prime minister, who will go to Buckingham Palace later to tender his resignation to the Queen, told MPs he would "miss the roar of the crowd". [...]

Home Secretary Theresa May is preparing to succeed Mr Cameron later after her own audience with the Queen.

Theresa May won the Tory MP vote on Thursday. Initially the vote appeared to be setting the stage for a protracted campaign between May and runner-up Andrea Leadsom, to be decided by the Tory members voting in September. Then somewhat unexpectedly Leadsom conceded on Monday.

Profiling May, the Independent compares her to German Chancellor Merkel:

The Independent -- Theresa May: How a fiercely private, self-described ‘goody-two shoes’ rose through Tory ranks to become next PM (Jul 11, 2016)

Ms May has been widely characterised as a pragmatic, non-ideological politician and has been compared to German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Despite the fact she has identified herself with the One Nation Conservative position within her party, she is seen to be predominantly concerned with getting the job done.

The comparison to Merkel is not new. Here is FT making the same comparison back in 2014:

FT -- Theresa May: Britain’s Angela Merkel? (Jul 25, 2014)

Theresa Mary May, née Brasier, was born in 1956 and is one of just two Conservative women to rise this far in British politics. Margaret Thatcher is the only other Tory woman to have occupied one of the four “great offices of state”: prime minister, foreign secretary, chancellor, home secretary. But a more relevant comparison is made between May and Angela Merkel, the German chancellor: another non-ideological politician with a ruthless streak who gets on with the job. “If you think of what she’s achieved, you know, there are still people who don’t rate her, are a bit dismissive, perhaps because of the way she looks and dresses,” May said of Merkel in 2012 in a rare personal interview with The Daily Telegraph. “What matters is, what has she actually done?”

Meanwhile FAZ has compared recent remarks of May to those of Ludwig Erhard, Minister of Economics under Adenauer in post-war Germany and architect of the soziale Marktwirtschaft:

FAZ -- Theresa May auf den Spuren von Ludwig Erhard (Jul 13, 2016)

Für das Publikum kann die rhetorische Endlosschleife zwar ziemlich nervtötend sein. Doch ohne einen solchen „catch phrase“ will auch Großbritanniens frisch gebackene Premierministerin Theresa May nicht auskommen. Ihrer lautet: „An economy that works for everyone“. Zu deutsch - und frei nach Ludwig Erhard: Wohlstand für alle.


Die Premierministerin signalisiert, dass sie verstanden habe. „Das Referendum war nicht nur ein Votum dafür, die EU zu verlassen, sondern auch eines für wirkliche Veränderungen“, sagte sie diese Woche in einer Art vorgezogenen Regierungserklärung. Im seit Jahrzehnten wirtschaftsliberal geprägten Großbritannien soll der Staat wieder stärker lenken: May will exzessive Managergehälter deckeln. Mitarbeiter und sogar Konsumenten sollen in den Verwaltungsräten von Großunternehmen vertreten sein.

Keine Experimente, then?

Perhaps that's a good idea. As The Telegraph notes, the Brexit experiment has already exploded in the face of its architects:

The Telegraph -- The Curse of Brexit? All four leading lights of the Leave campaign brought down after referendum (Jul 11, 2016)

Barely three weeks ago, Mrs Leadsom, along with fellow leave campaigners Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, faced the prospect of a leading role in a new, Brexit government, while Nigel Farage had achieved his life’s aim of taking the nation out of the EU.

Now the career prospects of all four look decidedly less rosy. In a series of interlinking developments, Mr Johnson was brutally knifed by his erstwhile close colleague, Mr Gove; a move that made the Justice Secretary so toxic that he himself failed to progress in the Conservative Party leadership race.


Then Mr Farage quit his post at the helm of Ukip, amid rumours that he was holding out for a place on Mrs Leadsom’s Brexit negotiation team.

But that prospect was snatched from him yesterday as, Mrs Leadsom fell on her sword, stunned by the fallout from a newspaper interview in which she appeared to suggest that she would make a better leader than Theresa May, because she was a mother.

The dangers of riding the tiger.