More can be done on PM's Brexit deal, says Andrea Leadsom

Pauline Gross
November 19, 2018

British Prime Minister Theresa May will on Monday defend her draft Brexit deal to business leaders ahead of "intense negotiations" with Brussels in the coming week.

UK Prime Theresa May may be having a hard time holding her government together as, as the time of print, four ministers have submitted their resignations immediately after she endorsed a Brexit deal that has always been a long time in coming.

Raab later told the BBC he would vote against the Brexit deal in parliament, but had not submitted a letter of no confidence in the Prime Minister.

Speculation is mounting over whether he has received the 48 letters of no confidence required to challenge her leadership of the Conservative Party.

Sir Graham told BBC Radio 5 Live's Pienaar's Politics he would not reveal how many letters he had received - saying he had not even told his wife, who is his parliamentary assistant.

"These next seven days are going to be critical, they are about the future of this country", May told Sky News.

Asked if she had considered stepping down, Mrs May said: "No, I haven't".

Seven leading Conservatives, including Boris Johnson, David Davis and Dominic Raab, are actively preparing campaigns to challenge Theresa May's leadership, United Kingdom media reported, as she declared "no alternative" to her Brexit deal.

After the most tumultuous week of her premiership, which saw senior ministers quit over the draft divorce deal agreed with the EU, Mrs May said she would be heading to Brussels for talks on the "future relationship".

Mrs May said negotiating teams were working "as we speak" and she meant to go to Brussels and meet European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker.

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In the meantime, EU Council president Donald Tusk is going ahead with plans to bring May and her fellow leaders together on November 25 to sign the deal.

Tom Watson says it is time for Labour to be given a chance to rescue Brexit as he called for a General Election amid turmoil at the heart of Government.

He said he voted Remain in the 2016 referendum but if there were to be another, he said: "I don't know how I would vote - what the options would be at that time".

In a blow to hopeful Cabinet Brexiters, Theresa May appears to have said there is no scope to renegotiate the heavily criticised backstop and Withdrawal Agreement.

But convening a European Council without a British Prime Minister would send the message that Brexit and the Article 50 does not stop. The arrangement is aimed at avoiding a hard border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

May observed that political opponents inside the party think too much of what they consider to be her privileged position and too little about the responsibility that accompanies that privilege.

In fairness to the prime minister, getting a withdrawal agreement that would ensure no hard border on the island of Ireland, satisfy the European Union and make parliament happy would be, at best, extraordinarily difficult.

She said replacing her will bring in uncertainty, and will risk delaying the talks and postponing Britain's European Union departure date, set for March 29.

European negotiators plan to publish their version of the statement on future relations on Tuesday. "We need to be going out there and grasping opportunities", Raab told the paper.

"The government is trying to force a bad deal that doesn't meet our country's needs by threatening us all with the chaos and serious damage to our economy of a no deal outcome", he will say.

Other reports by GizPress

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