Johnson hints at more resignations over May's Brexit plans

BENFLEET ENGLAND- FEBRUARY 12 United Kingdom Indepedence Party leader Nigel Farage smiles as he holds a wash bag with writing on which reads 'Don't Panic' as he campaigns ahead of the general election

BENFLEET ENGLAND- FEBRUARY 12 United Kingdom Indepedence Party leader Nigel Farage smiles as he holds a wash bag with writing on which reads 'Don't Panic' as he campaigns ahead of the general election

Johnson, who campaigned for Britain to stay in the European Union in the 2016 referendum, follows his elder sibling Boris - who spearheaded the pro-Brexit camp and quit as foreign secretary in July over Prime Minister Theresa May's plans - out of government over the divisive issue.

"Given that the reality of Brexit has turned out to be so far from what was once promised, the democratic thing to do is to give the public the final say", he added.

"It has become increasingly clear to me that the withdrawal agreement, which is being finalised in Brussels and Whitehall even as I write, will be a bad mistake", said Johnson, who was a transport minister in the government.

If a deal is voted down by parliament, the country could be thrust into an uncertain future: leaving abruptly without a deal, the collapse of May's government, an election, or, as some opponents of Brexit hope, a new referendum.

"We may or may not be able to get an agreement in which case we would have to leave the European Union without one, but we're not going to be bounced into having another referendum", he said.

The timing of the decision will come as a blow to Mrs May, who is priming her Cabinet to sign up to proposals which will allow her to secure a deal on the withdrawal agreement with Brussels.

Rail minister Jo Johnson has quit his post over the government's handling of Brexit.

May is also facing more opposition from the Democratic Unionist Party, a party in Northern Ireland whose lawmakers have propped up May's minority government.

Johnson, who was pictured with his father Stanley outside BBC Broadcasting House in London this morning, said: 'I know many are reflecting hard about the deal that's looming and how they will respond to it but it's obviously for each of them to work out how best to respond.

Johnson, backed the Remain side during the referendum said it would be "a travesty" not to have a second referendum.

On Friday the DUP, whose support Theresa May relies on for votes in the Commons, said they could not support any deal which included the possibility that Northern Ireland would be treated differently from the rest of the UK.

He added that the deals on offer could "inflict untold damage on our nation".

He published an article online in which he warned that the Prime Minister was presenting the country with "two deeply unattractive outcomes - vassalage and chaos".

He acknowledged that the Brexit negotiations "have at least united us in fraternal dismay".

"We may not have agreed about Brexit but we are united in dismay at the intellectually and politically indefensible".

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.