The Speaker
Wednesday, 29 November 2023 – 11:32

Jo Johnson resigns as UK Government minister over Theresa May’s Brexit plan

Theresa May’s hopes of winning Parliament’s backing for her Brexit deal is looking doubtful after transport minister Jo Johnson resigned from his position and accused her of offering MP’s a choice between “Vassalage and chaos”.

Brother to former Foreign minister Boris Johnson, said he cannot support the deal and will push for a second referendum.

The MP for Orpington and erstwhile transport minister, said he could not vote for the deal that May is expected to bring back to Parliament within weeks, and instead would throw his weight behind second referendum.

“It is has become increasingly clear to me that the withdrawal agreement, which is being finalised in Brussels and Whitehall even as I write, will be a terrible mistake,” he wrote in an online article 

He said the public were being offered “an agreement that will leave our country economically weakened, with no say in the EU rules it must follow and years uncertainty for businesses” or a no-deal Brexit “that I know as a transport minister will inflict untold damage on our nation.

“To present the nation with a choice between two deeply unattractive outcomes, vassalage and chaos, is a failure of British statecraft on a scale unseen since the Suez crisis.”

Johnson, a former Financial Times journalist, launched a lacerating attack on the Prime Minister in his resignation statement and referred to his brother, Boris Johnson who quit as Foreign minister in July over Mrs May’s strategy, he said “If these negotiations have achieved little else, they have at least united us in fraternal dismay.”


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