May vows to fight on despite Brexit meltdown

Friday, 16 Nov, 2018

"There's no way to know if an accord will finally be agreed", he said.

Why did Theresa May wear a Frida Kahlo bracelet to defend her Brexit deal?

"But I believe with every fiber of my being that the course I have set out is the right one for our country and all our people", she said, adding that the alternative was a "path of deep and grave uncertainty". "But sensing the levels of frustration and annoyance colleagues are feeling it would not surprise me if organically letters are going in". "They are looking to the Conservative Party to deliver".

"We will be locked in a Customs Arrangement [sic] indefinitely, bound by rules determined by the European Union over which we have no say".

With just weeks left before Brexit date, May still managed to get the 585-page compromise past her divided cabinet yesterday, clearing just one of several hurdles before it can be approved.

Dominic Raab resigned as Brexit secretary on Thursday morning, telling BBC News he quit the cabinet over "fatal flaws" in the draft agreement.

"I can not support an indefinite backstop arrangement where the European Union holds a veto over our ability to exit".

"You deserve a Brexit secretary who can make the case for the deal you are pursuing with conviction".

He said the deal "would treat Northern Ireland differently than the rest of the UK" and "lock us into an EU customs union".

A spokesman for the pro-Brexit European Research Group, of which Rees-Mogg is the leader, has confirmed he will submit a letter of no-confidence in Mrs May's leadership. He said May was "losing the confidence of Conservative members of Parliament".

Two cabinet ministers, and two junior ministers, have resigned over the deal - while some Conservative MPs have attempted to force a leadership contest by writing letters of no confidence in the prime minister. She can only win the vote by depending on the "kindness of strangers", in other words Scottish National Party, Liberal Democrat and wayward Labour MPs. Calls for another referendum to resolve the imbroglio grew.

"This is exactly what this agreement will deliver". That prompted a big fall in the value of the pound, which was trading 1.3 percent lower at $1.2829. That could see tariffs on British exports, border che- cks and restrictions on travelers and workers - a toxic mix for businesses.

Former Tory leader Lord Hague warned Brexiteers that if they did not accept Mrs May's deal, Britain might not leave the EU.

Pacifying some in her own party will be a challenge and on Thursday Shailesh Vara quit as Northern Ireland Minister, saying he could not support May's agreement, which he said "leaves the United Kingdom in a halfway house with no time limit on when we will finally be a sovereign nation".

"The British people want us to get this done".

The developments threaten to derail the prime minister's Brexit strategy ahead of a crucial EU summit, which European Council President Donald Tusk confirmed would take place on November 25, "if nothing extraordinary happens".

The parliament's chief Brexit official, Guy Verhofstadt, welcomed the draft deal as "the best agreement we could obtain".

Vara, a Northern Ireland minister, became the first member of the government to quit over the deal as May began trying to sell the draft accord to parliament.

The European Union wants the United Kingdom to agree a "backstop" or fallback position that would ensure an open border between Northern Ireland, which will be outside the EU, and the Republic of Ireland, which will remain an EU member state.

Opposition parties also signalled they would vote against the agreement.

Speaking to the house on Thursday morning, May repeated those comments and asked lawmakers to give the deal their backing.

A move by Brexiteer Conservatives unhappy with the deal she has presented to try and oust her is now said to be "imminent".

That pressure continued in the House of Commons Thursday, where May defended the deal in the face of anger from both opposition and Tory backbenchers.

The long wait on the roads for trucks could see food stocks rotting in storage.

In Brussels, where some European Union officials hold out hope that Britain will change its mind about Brexit, officials watched the political upheaval with interest.