FLASH: Theresa May summons Brexiteers to ward off coup.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May was holding crisis talks with colleagues on Sunday working to revive her 2X Brexit deal after reports that her Cabinet was plotting to topple her.
The United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union was already slipping from Mrs. May’s weakened grasp as she struggled to increase support for her deal and parliament prepared to grab control of Brexit in the coming days.
At 1 of the most important junctures for the country since WWII, British politics is hot. Yet, nearly 3 years since the Y 2016 referendum, it remains unclear how, when or if BREXIT will ever happen.
With Mrs. May humiliated and weakened, her Ministers publicly downplayed any immediate threat to her leadership, insisting that she is still in control and the best option is for parliament to ratify her BREXIT divorce deal.
After hundreds of thousands of people marched across central London Saturday to demand another BREXIT referendum, Mrs. May was the subject of what The Sunday Times said was a “coup” by senior Cabinet Ministers seeking to oust her.
The paper cited 11 unidentified senior Ministers and said they had agreed that the PM should stand down, warning that she has become a toxic and erratic figure whose judgment has “gone haywire.”
But 2 of the leading candidates as caretaker leaders; Mrs. May’s de facto deputy David Lidington and Environment Secretary Michael Gove backed Mrs. May Sunday.
“I don’t think that I have any wish to take over from the PM; I think (she) is doing a fantastic job,” Mr. Lidington told reporters.
“One thing that working closely with the prime minister does is cure you completely of any lingering shred of ambition to want to do that task,” he said.
Mr. Gove also downplayed the possibility of a coup: “I think it is not the time to change the captain of the ship. I think what we need to do is to chart the right course, and the Prime Minister has charted that right course by making sure that we have a deal that honors the referendum mandate,” he said.
UK lawmakers Monday will debate a government motion saying Parliament has considered a statement made by Mrs. May on 15 March setting out the government’s next steps on BREXIT, including the plan to seek a delay.
They are likely to propose changes, or amendments, to this motion setting out alternative ways forward on BREXIT. These are expected to include a proposal to approve Mrs. May’s deal only if it is put to a public vote.