Dec 15, 2018 06:20 UTC
  • Senior Tories urge May to work with Labour to save Brexit deal

Senior Tories have called on Prime Minister Theresa May to begin talks with Labour in a bid to save her Brexit deal now that her strategy is in tatters over the EU’s refusal to renegotiate.

The embattled prime minister has been urged to stop attempting to “go it alone,” accept her agreement was ruined and that she should get help from other parties.

“After this week’s events in Westminster and Brussels, the only way the prime minister gets any kind of deal through is with cross party support and proper discussions to secure that now need to start,” Nicky Morgan, the former education secretary, told The Independent.

Nick Boles, another former minister, and George Freeman, May’s former policy chief, both called for cross-party discussions.

Arlene Foster, the Democratic Unionist Party’s leader, said, “The reaction by the EU is unsurprising. They are doing what they always do. The key question is whether the prime minister will stand up to them or whether she will roll over as has happened previously.”

Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said May had “utterly failed in her attempts to deliver any meaningful changes to her botched deal,” urging a Commons vote to kill it off immediately.

“Rather than ploughing ahead and dangerously running down the clock, the prime minister needs to put her deal to a vote next week so parliament can take back control,” he said.

May traveled to Brussels to attend an EU summit to get privileges from the bloc that could enhance her chances of going through the British parliament with her Brexit plan.

May said on Thursday, however, that she did not expect to secure a quick breakthrough in talks.

After the two-day talks, EU President Donald Tusk said Friday he had no mandate to reopen negotiations with the UK, dealing a devastating blow to May’s plan.

“I have no mandate to organize any further negotiations. We have to exclude any further opening of the withdrawal agreement,” Tusk said. “But of course, we are staying here in Brussels and I’m always at the PM’s disposal.”

The talks were also attended by the other 27 national leaders of the bloc who offered May only vague assurances over her Brexit deal.