Pro-Brexit Tories 'give Theresa May one week' to drop Chequers plan or face no confidence vote
Angry pro-Brexit Tories have given Theresa May a week to abandon her Chequers plan or face a vote of no confidence in her leadership, it has been reported.
They claim to have amassed the 48 letters required to trigger a contest and will submit them to the 1922 Committee of Tory backbenchers unless she changes course, according to the Daily Telegraph.
It comes amid turmoil in the Conservative party after the Prime Minister agreed the soft-Brexit plan with her Cabinet - which includes sticking with EU goods rules and collecting customs tariffs on behalf of the bloc.
Ex-Cabinet big hitters David Davis and Boris Johnson resigned from their jobs, as well as former junior minister Steve Baker and two Tory vice chairs Ben Bradley and Maria Caulfield.
An anti-EU Tory told the Telegraph: "If the policy doesn't change the letters will go in.
"Her deal will be rejected by Brussels, Downing Street must know that. They are either being incompetent of disingenuous."
Another told the Daily Mail: “This is not going to stop. We want the Chequers plan killed, and we want it killed now. This is guerilla war.”
Tory MP Andrew Bridgen was the first to hand his letter to chair of the 1922 Sir Graham Brady yesterday. In it he said the Prime Minister had “insulted” the intelligence of voters with her promises.
Meanwhile, warnings surfaced that the Chequers plan would fail to gain the support of enough MPs to pass the Commons.
One Cabinet minister told the Times: “I think that the Chequers compromise is going to be voted down in the Commons.
“I can’t see how Labour don’t reject it outright. I think there’s quite a good chance nobody gets what they want and it’s not clear where that leaves us.”
Another said: “We need to convince the Brexiteers that we’ve left, and that we will diverge but this will take 15 years not one. We can’t do it in one leap, but we will get what they want.”
Elsewhere, the Sun reported that ministers were drawing up secret plans to stockpile food and medicines in case the UK crashes out of the EU without a deal in March 2019.
According to the paper the scheme is one of 300 contingency measures for the worst case scenario being spearheaded by new Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab.
A spokesperson for the Prime Minister said yesterday: "We've always said it is sensible to make preparations for all scenarios and that includes no deal."