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Former Conservative cabinet minister: Theresa May must go

Former Conservative cabinet minister: Theresa May must go”

Following speculation in Tory ranks about her future, May will insist her commitment is "undimmed" nearly 12 months after entering Number 10 as Prime Minister.

One MP who was at the dinner said: "Mr Mitchell effectively said [May] was dead in the water".

"The Scottish Government already put forward a range of proposals last December which the United Kingdom government thought they could blithely ignore".

Former worldwide development secretary Mr Mitchell - a close ally of Brexit secretary David Davis who is seen as a potential successor to Mrs May - is said to have made the comments at a dinner on June 26, the day the prime minister struck a deal with the DUP to prop up her administration.

Mitchell downplayed the Mail's story, describing it in a statement to Bloomberg as "an overheated report of a private dinner conversation".

Theresa May outside 10 Downing Street a year ago.

If she's to succeed, she'll need help from the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) and for a splintering Tory party to unite behind her.

It comes amid rumours of a possible challenge to Mrs May's leadership after the Conservatives lost their majority, forcing the party to dump much of its election manifesto and leading to open conflict between cabinet ministers on whether to soften the squeeze on public spending. However, the majority of Tory MPs are reluctant to back a change in leadership for fear of another general election, and the prospect of a victory for Labour.

And in the speech, on Tuesday, she will urge other parties to work with her on ideas to tackle "unfairness".

Rumblings of discontent about May's leadership come in a crucial week for her premiership as the government publishes its European Union repeal bill on Thursday. It would reverse the European Communities Act of 1972, which gave effect to EU law in the United Kingdom, and graft EU statutes into British law, giving ministers sweeping powers to adapt legislation without parliamentary scrutiny.

Labour has said it will attempt to see extra protections for workers and the environment, while other MPs could seek to retain the oversight of cross-EU bodies such as Euratom, even if this means coming under the jurisdiction of the European court of justice.

MPs from all parties fighting against a hard Brexit are planning a series of attempts to change the legislation, with Labour certain to push for more safeguards for the environment and employment rights. Nicky Morgan, the former education secretary, has said this position is too absolutist.

But ahead of the publication of the Repeal Bill on Thursday, ex-culture minister Ed Vaizey yesterday wrote an article with Labour MP Rachel Reeves calling for compromise over the role of the court - allowing the United Kingdom to continue participating in the Euratom treaty, governing nuclear co-operation.

The mood has alarmed some of the most dedicated Brexiters, who are concerned there is a concerted effort underway to "stymie" the Brexit process.

At the weekend Tory former ministers Dominic Grieve and Nicky Morgan hit out at the "red line" of ending the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice, while Ed Vaizey attracted support after calling for the United Kingdom to remain part of the Euratom civil nuclear community.

Yesterday the likely Liberal Democrat leader Sir Vince Cable said he believed Brexit "may never happen" because of the difficulty in striking the right deal and getting it through a divided parliament. But amid the heat of high summer, it looks very much as if a plot is under way at Westminster.



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