Published: Mon, September 10, 2018
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

Chequers plan is only deal on the table with EU: Britain's Javid

Chequers plan is only deal on the table with EU: Britain's Javid

But the plan and the UK's alternative backstop would both mean "agreeing to take European Union rules, with no say on those rules", leaving the country a "vassal state". "We look like a seven-stone (44kg) weakling being comically bent out of shape by a 500lb (226kg) gorilla", he added.

Johnson said May's plan, which would keep the United Kingdom aligned to European Union regulations in return for free trade in goods, was a "humiliation" and amounted to "agreeing to take European Union rules, with no say on those rules".

"We have wrapped a suicide vest around the British constitution - and handed the detonator to [the EU's chief Brexit negotiator] Michel Barnier", he wrote.

"We have given him a jemmy with which Brussels can choose - at any time - to crack apart the union between Great Britain and Northern Ireland", he wrote in the Mail on Sunday.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said there were "much better ways to articulate your differences", while Communities Secretary James Brokenshire said he had used the wrong tone.

In his most outspoken comments about her negotiating strategy, Mr Johnson said: "It is a humiliation".

A suicide bomber murdered many in the courtyard of my office in Helmand. "Comparing the PM to that isn't amusing", he said.

Johnson's inflammatory language drew outrage from colleagues, with junior foreign minister Alan Duncan saying it was "disgusting" to compare May's view to that of a suicide bomber.

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But he said: "I would agree to take it in a heartbeat and would submit to any review the administration wanted to do". I think the author ... and frankly The New York Times should be ashamed".

Asked later by BBC Radio 4's Today programme as to whether he could serve under Johnson, Gauke said there was no vacancy, adding: "I'm probably not a natural Boris supporter". "If it isn't now, I will make sure it is later".

There are a number of possible motives behind this tweet, but given its author, we can be certain "principles" aren't one of them.

While Mr Javid voiced measured criticism of Mr Johnson, other Tories reacted more angrily to his remarks.

As I explained last week, the 48 signatures needed to trigger a leadership election are achievable, the 158 Tory MPs needed to ditch May are rather less so.

The paper says it has seen the document - said to have been written during the Conservative leadership contest - but officials at Downing Street and Conservative Campaign Headquarters have denied circulating it.

With just 200 days to go to the scheduled date of Brexit, Mr Baker said that the PM would lack credibility with Brussels negotiators if she tried to press ahead with the Brexit blueprint at the party conference without the backing of her party.

In the Mail on Sunday, the former foreign secretary said the Chequers deal was "feeble" and "pathetic".

"We are reaching the point now where it is extremely hard to see how we can rescue the Conservative party from a catastrophic split if the Chequers proposals are carried forward".

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