May stares down Brexit plan backlash as ministers quit

Boris Johnson quits as British foreign minister

Earlier on Monday, Ireland's Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said that the focus of the Irish government is on Mrs May's engagement with the European Union and dismissed suggestions that Mr Davis' exit from the cabinet will throw the Prime Minister's latest plan into disarray.

The departures of David Davis and Boris Johnson clearly rip apart what appeared to be the makings of a fragile Brexit ceasefire among some of the big players in the Conservative Party. Steve Baker also resigned as a junior Brexit minister.

Matt Hancock replaced Hunt as health secretary, while Attorney General Jeremy Wright was appointed as minister of digital culture, media and sport, Hancock's old job.

Mr Bradley said in his resignation letter that the Chequers plan would damage the UK's opportunities to develop global trade and be "an outward-looking nation in control of our own destiny" following Brexit.

"Whoever becomes leader is going to have exactly the same problems she's got, which is, thanks to her and her election previous year; we don't have a majority in the House of Commons", she said.

"On Friday, I acknowledged that my side of the argument were too few to prevail and congratulated you on at least reaching a Cabinet decision on the way forward".

Boris Johnson might be the most likely challenger, but has not exactly covered himself in glory considering his undiplomatic language about business, declining to make good on his promise to lie down in front of bulldozers to obstruct a third Heathrow runway, and seemingly flip-flopping repeatedly over whether to support May's plan. "The trouble is that I have practised the words over the weekend and find they stick in the throat", he wrote to May.

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"We must have collective responsibility".

Some 64% of Britons do not trust her to run Brexit negotiations - up 31 percentage points from when we last asked the question in March 2017.

Despite this support from within her party, following the resignation of Mr Davis a poll by broadcaster Sky News has found that the British people have turned on her.

This is a possibility, particularly now Mr Johnson has followed Mr Davis out of the door.

Arch-Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg said he did not believe there would be a vote of confidence in Mrs May by Tory MPs, but called on her to change her Brexit stance as he attacked the Cabinet deal on European Union withdrawal hammered out at a summit at Chequers last week.

Some Brexiteers think that the most crucial issue is to ensure that Britain actually leaves the European Union in March next year, and feel that whatever arrangements Mrs May has secured can always be renegotiated once that point has been reached.

The 1922 Committee is made up of Conservative backbench MPs.

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The HuffPost reports that May's allies believe that her unpredictable rival - perhaps the most polarising presence in the party - lacks the numbers to trigger a vote of confidence, and that "even if one was sparked, Johnson may also fail to get enough MPs needed to get his name on the leadership election ballot paper sent to party members".

And senior backbencher Bernard Jenkin said there had been a "massive haemorrhage of trust" in Mrs May.

He is a vote victor, and in its current crisis that is exactly what the Conservative Party needs.

But he suggested he might take time during his United Kingdom visit to speak with Johnson, who he described as "a friend of mine".

The controversy didn't stop Mr Johnson from publicly slamming the government's Brexit approach again months later. "That dream is dying, suffocated by needless self-doubt".

Ian Lavery, chairman of the main opposition Labour Party, said, "This is absolute chaos and Theresa May has no authority left".

The Chequers agreement "stands as a shattered truce, a sticking plaster over the Cabinet's cracks in this Government", Mr Corbyn told the Commons.

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