Published: Thu, September 05, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

PM's brother quits as Tory MP and minister

PM's brother quits as Tory MP and minister

Opposition lawmakers, supported by rebels in Johnson's Conservative Party, warn that crashing out of the bloc without a divorce agreement would cause irreparable economic harm.

Boris Johnson's brother has quit the Government, saying he had been "torn between family loyalty and the national interest".

Despite a sense of public irritation with being asked to go to the polls so regularly, the poll revealed an unlikely majority in favour of an October general election, with 46 per cent in favour and 36 per cent against.

Johnson cast the legislative move in the House of Commons as an attempt to surrender to the European Union over Brexit and demanded an October 15 snap election, a step that could free him of any constraints if he won a majority.

However, Leader of Opposition and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has said that snap polls could happen only after the bill blocking no-deal Brexit is passed.

The Labour leader has said he would wait until the Bill became law before considering a general election.

Ahead of a speech in northern England where Johnson was expected to begin an informal election campaign, his own brother, Jo, resigned as a junior business minister and said he was stepping down as a lawmaker for their Conservative Party.

European diplomats said an election campaign would halt any Brexit talks with the EU and expressed frustration with the turmoil in British politics at such an important juncture in European history.

On Brexit, British PM stymied by rebels from his own party
He said the British government was making substantial progress and would succeed in removing the Irish border backstop. Mr Corbyn said the negotiations Johnson talked about "are a sham - all he's doing is running down the clock".

A Conservative MP has compared Boris Johnson to Stalin for removing 21 anti no-deal MPs from theparty.

"The problem that we have got is that we cannot at the moment have any confidence in Boris Johnson abiding by any commitment or deal that we could construct. So we are now consulting about whether it's better to go long, therefore, rather than to go short".

When Theresa May called a Brexit election in 2017, she anticipated the Tories making sweeping gains in those Labour-held seats in the North which voted to leave the EU.

Former Tory MP David Gauke, who had the whip removed after voting against the government, tweeted: "Lots of MPs have had to wrestle with conflicting loyalties in recent weeks".

One Nation group leader and former cabinet minister Damian Green told the BBC: "I'm afraid it does look as though somebody has decided that the moderate, progressive wing of the Conservative Party is not wanted on voyage".

Giving evidence to lawmakers on the Exiting the European Union committee on the government's contingency planning for a No Deal scenario, Gove also played down the prospect of the United Kingdom facing fresh food shortages in the weeks following a No Deal Brexit.

The Prime Minister has repeatedly claimed progress is being made and told MPs on Tuesday that "in the last few weeks, I believe the chances of a deal have risen".

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