Key ministers back British PM

Aaron Brown
November 19, 2018

"This is a deal that delivers on the priorities of the British people", May told reporters at a press conference held after she presented the draft agreement to the British Parliament where Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg launched a tirade against May while submitting a letter of no-confidence.

Junior Education Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said in her resignation letter that it was now clear to her that "the negotiations have been built on the United Kingdom trying to appease the European Union and we have allowed ourselves to be led into a deal which is unacceptable to the 17.4 million voters who asked for us to step away from the European Union project and become an independent nation once again". "I hope that across Parliament we'll recognize that a deal is better than no deal", he said.

Earlier, Stephen Barclay was picked as the new Brexit secretary, replacing Dominic Raab who quit on Thursday, as Mrs May sought to fill her cabinet following the resignations.

May is determined to fight on, warning abandoning her Brexit plan, with Britain's withdrawal just over four months away on March 29, would plunge the country into "deep and grave uncertainty".

Meanwhile, the Democratic Unionist Party, which props up May's minority government, say they intend to oppose the deal because of the "backstop" mechanism agreed to by May would mean additional checks on goods passing between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

The deal prompted the start of a tumultuous few days for Mrs May, with two senior ministers and several other junior ministers and aides resigning.

Trade minister Liam Fox, another leading Brexit supporter, also backed May, while her de facto deputy David Lidington said she would win a vote of no confidence. She did not immediately address that part of the caller's question.

'I think there is one thing that is missing and that is political will and resolve.

Theresa May

Her Eurosceptic critics insist they are within striking distance of collecting the 48 signatures required to trigger the vote, although claims that they had already passed the threshold proved unfounded.

"I think we're probably not far off", said Baker, a key figure in the Brexit-backing wing of May's party.

On Saturday Andrea Leadsom, the minister in charge of government business in parliament, told the BBC that she was supporting May but was not fully happy with the deal.

Much of the reason he said he wouldn't support Theresa May's deal was because it was "vague" and did not say enough about workers rights and environmental protections. However, both the Irish and Dutch prime ministers said there was little scope to change the proposals.

Foreign Office Minister Mark Field appealed for MPs to stop "squabbling" and get behind Mrs May's Brexit deal.

"I will be going back to Brussels", May told Sky News television, saying she would meet European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker. But winning a leadership vote could strengthen her position, because the rules say she can't be challenged again for a year.

He was confident the country would vote to remain, but voters opted by 52 percent to 48 percent to quit the European Union, a result that left both the Conservatives and the country more divided than ever.

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