WHAT HE TOLD THE MAIL
I have always been a loyal Member of Parliament. I have never rebelled on anything. I’m not a serial mutineer. I’ve just reached the point where I cannot see the logic of how we are proceeding with Brexit. It’s riddled with such contradictions as to make no sense at all now at any level. It is a fake fudge.
It was meant to be about sovereignty and trade deals, but we’re going to have no capacity to make meaningful trade deals.
It was meant to be about a brave new future as a deregulated economy. But we’re signing up to the common rule book on standards and health and safety, the environment and all the rest of it. It’s completely incoherent.
Rather than take this irrevocable step we should give the public a chance to reflect on whether this extraordinary course, which is so different from what was promised in the referendum, is really the one they want to go down. And if they do, well fair enough.
I really wanted the Prime Minister to make a success of Brexit, and stood by silently and watched over the past couple of years and lent every support I could in the Commons voting lobbies. But what’s the point when we’re about to do something which doesn’t stack up.
We’re on the verge of doing the deal. I have waited for two years to give the Prime Minister space, not to tie her negotiating hand, not to narrow her freedom of manoeuvre. But now that we’re actually at the point of being asked to vote it through in the coming days, at some point you got to say, “Hold on, does this make sense or not?” And to me it doesn’t any more. I don’t want to resign from the Government – you work hard for these privileged positions, but I’ve got to do it.
I’ve got no idea if others will follow, I’m not part of a plot, this is not about leadersh ip. I’m not trying to oust Theresa May: I’ve wished her well. It’s not about her.
Out of power: Boris Johnson with brother Jo, who yesterday joined him in resigning