Saturday, 23 February, 2019


Britain's Brexit Secretary Abruptly Quits, Throwing Deal To Leave EU In Doubt

Cabinet including Davis at Chequers Britain's Brexit Secretary Abruptly Quits, Throwing Deal To Leave EU In Doubt
Conrad Doyle | 09 July, 2018, 19:17

The resignation comes two days after the whole of the cabinet met at Chequers to agree Britain's negotiating position.

In a resignation letter circulated by local reporters, Davis told May he has repeatedly disagreed with the government over the a year ago and that it is looking "less and less likely" that the government can deliver Brexit per voters' wishes. Davis was a strong pro-Brexit voice in a Cabinet divided between supporters of a clean break with the bloc and those who want to keep close ties with Britain's biggest trading partner.

Sterling rose, as traders bet Davis's resignation would not imperil May and instead focused on the newly-announced deal that markets believe makes a "soft Brexit" more likely.

- His departure leaves May with a hard task to find a replacement who can win the confidence of the pro-Brexit faction in May's Conservative Party whilst delivering on a Brexit plan that outraged many of them.

David Davis said he "wouldn't have done a good job" of delivering May's Brexit plan, with Tory MP Marcus Fysh saying the plan is paramount to breaking manifesto pledges, which "has consequences".

Davis' departure comes just nine months before Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union and 15 weeks before a final deal is to be signed.

Before his letter of resignation was made public, Davis's allies told the British press that he was resigning because he could not support the soft Brexit plan pushed forward by May at a crunch cabinet meeting Friday at the prime minister's countryside estate, called Chequers.

"As I said at Cabinet, the "common rule book" policy hands control of large swathes of our economy to the European Union and is certainly not returning control of our laws in any real sense".

I am also unpersuaded that our negotiating approach will not just lead to further demands for concessions.

"It seems to me that the national interest requires a secretary of state in my department that is an enthusiastic believer in your approach, and not merely a reluctant conscript", he wrote.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, a leading Brexit hardliner, told Sky News: "This is very important".

Davis said he had left because he feared the European Union would "take what we have offered already and then demand some more".

Davis' resignation was also accompanied by the resignation of his deputy, Brexit minister Steve Baker, according to the Telegraph.

Johnson has not commented publicly since Friday.

So to criticise Friday's plan, ministers would have to resign and immediately give up ministerial staff, salary, and perks including government cars. Environment Secretary Michael Gove said Sunday that it did not contain everything he wanted but "I'm a realist". Conservative MPs have repeatedly told Business Insider that there is likely to be a challenge against her once Brexit negotiations conclude and Britain has left the European Union next March.

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