- Conservative MP Dominic Grieve, who is trying to stop a no-deal Brexit, says MPs could still vote to bring down Boris Johnson’s government if he tries to force the UK out of the EU.
- One of Johnson’s senior aides reportedly laughed at the idea that the new prime minister would resign if he was brought down in a no-confidence vote.
- Johnson has promised to take the UK out of the EU by October 31, with or without a deal.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Senior Conservative Member of Parliament Dominic Grieve has insisted there is still time to stop a no-deal Brexit despite reported claims from inside Boris Johnson’s government that it is too late.
Dominic Cummings, Johnson’s new adviser – who oversaw the Vote Leave campaign to exit the European Union in 2016 – reportedly laughed at the idea that Johnson would resign as prime minister if he lost a confidence vote among MPs before Brexit, which is one plan that Conservative rebel MPs are considering.
The Financial Times reported that Cummings said Johnson would go ahead with a no-deal Brexit and then call a snap general election if he lost a vote of confidence, rather than resign as prime minister.
Cummings is already planning a general election campaign which pits “people vs. politicians” and blames MPs for failing to deliver Brexit, the report added.
“So he has a point, but I think he may also be missing the point that there are a number of things the House of Commons can do, including bringing down the government and setting up a new one in its place.”
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Monday morning that MPs would not be able to stop a no-deal Brexit taking place on October 31, having claimed during his campaign to be Conservative leader that they could.
“I thought that it could and the votes went differently to how I anticipated and when the facts changed sometimes even as a politician you have to change your mind,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
“When the facts change sometimes even as a politician you have to change your mind.”
However, his opposite number, Shadow Health Secretary Jon Ashworth, said the opposition Labour Party was working with ministers “rather foolishly” sacked by Johnson on ways of stopping a no-deal exit.
“We are working with MPs across the House of Commons and we will work to stop no-deal,” he told Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday.
Johnson, who was installed as prime minister in late July following the departure of Theresa May, has promised to take the UK out of the EU by October 31, the scheduled exit date, with or without a withdrawal deal.
He has insisted that securing a deal approved by parliament remains his priority and described the chances of a no-deal Brexit as a “million to one.” However, growing number of MPs believe he is actively seeking a no-deal outcome.
His government has taken a bullish stance with EU negotiators, insisting on the complete removal of the Irish backstop from the current Brexit deal, a request the EU has said it not agree to.
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