May faces renewed Brexit pressure after surprise ministerial resignation

May faces renewed Brexit pressure after surprise ministerial resignation

Tory wounds on EU withdrawal. Theresa May was facing fresh Brexit pressure on a number of fronts.

Jo Johnson's decision to quit as transport minister saw pro-EU and arch-Brexiters in the Conservative Party unite to attack the Prime Minister's stance.

Mrs May had to deal with a challenge from Northern Ireland's DUP for support of her needs to command a Commons majority.

Mr Johnson's dramatic move to exit Government, four months after his brother Boris dealt Mrs May a political blow by Cabinet, took Westminster by surprise.

However, his call for a Brexit referendum was attacked by Mrs. May's supporters.

Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi cautioned against a new poll, telling the BBC a move would "unleash forces that no politician … would actually know where it would end up".

He added: "In the sense that if you betray the British people where they no longer believe in democracy … you do not know what the consequences are."

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Amid the Tory infighting, DUP leader Arlene Foster made it clear her party against the PM's current proposals.

The DUP leader said "no unionist" could be back Mrs. May's apparent advocacy of a withdrawal from a Northern Ireland specific backstop.

Stormont's former first minister insisted there were "many others" in the Conservative Party who could not support the Prime Minister's proposals.

Eurosceptic Bruges Group on Saturday, Tory MP Mark Francois said further ministerial resignations could not be ruled out.

He told the BBC: "When we get the final deal, and it feels like that's not very far away, Cabinet ministers want to look into their hearts and see if they feel they can support it.

"And, if they can not, because they believe it's a bad deal for the country, then, honorably, they would have to resign."

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Tory former attorney general Dominic Grieve, who backed Remain in the referendum, told BBC2's Newsnight, "This is a matter when, quite frankly, country comes before party allegiance.

"This is, without doubt, the single most important decision we are going to make in our modern history.

"We're heading, probably, for the biggest peacetime crisis that we've ever had in modern history as well."

Jo Johnson, who is supported Remain in the referendum campaign, delivered a stinging reminder to Mrs. May's Brexit position.

He said: "To present the nation with a choice between two deeply unattractive outcomes, vassalage and chaos, is a failure of British statecraft on a scale since the Suez Crisis.

"We are barrelling towards incoherent brexit that is going to leave us trapped in a subordinate relationship to the EU.

"With no say over the rules that wants to govern huge swathes of our economy."

Boris Johnson backed his brother's decision, saying: "We may not have agreed on Brexit but we are united in dismay at the intellectually and politically indefensible of the UK position."

Speaking of his brother, Jo Johnson acknowledged that the Brexit negotiations have "at least united us in fraternal dismay".

The resignation came as Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn said that Brexit can not be stopped.

Asked by German magazine The Mirror if he would stop Brexit if he could, the Labor leader said: "We can not stop it.

"The referendum took place. Article 50 has been triggered. What we do is recognize the reasons why people vote Leave. "

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