EU says David Davis resignation 'not a problem for us'

Posted On: 
9th July 2018

The EU today shrugged its shoulders at the dramatic resignation of David Davis as Brexit Secretary, and told Britain: "We’re here to work."

David Davis quit as Brexit Secretary today
Credit: 
PA Images

A spokesman for the European Commission - which is leading the withdrawal negotiations - said the bloc was ready to discuss the future relationship regardless of turmoil in Whitehall.

The disinterest from the bloc is likely to stick in the throat of the outgoing Cabinet minister after he said his walkout would boost the Prime Minister’s hand in the talks.

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Mr Davis stunned Westminster last night when he said he could not back the blueprint for Brexit put forward by Theresa May and agreed by the Cabinet on Friday.

He said he would not have been a “plausible” salesman for the strategy as he felt it conceded too much to Brussels and would only be watered down further.

But he added of the PM: "She has got to have a Brexit Secretary who will deliver on her strategy. That’s not weakening - that’s actually enhancing the effectiveness of her strategy."

However, Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas, when asked if the resignation was a problem for the EU, said: "Not for us, we’re here to work."

At a press conference today, he added: "We are here to do a job. The time schedule is given, it’s tight, everybody knows this. We are available 24/7 and we have to go ahead."

And he added: “We are working for a deal and we are available 24/7 to contribute to one.”

Earlier today, Dominic Raab was named as the replacement to Mr Davis in the Brexit department as Theresa May tried to restore order to the Government.

Elsewhere, junior Brexit Minister Steve Baker followed his boss out of government, saying he he could not back the Chequers deal with "sincerity and resolve".