May presses on with Brexit af­ter min­is­ter quits

Stamford Advocate (Sunday) - - Obituaries/News -

Bri­tish Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May said Sat­ur­day she was de­ter­mined to win law­mak­ers' back­ing for her Brexit deal, af­ter a min­is­ter who quit her gov­ern­ment said her divorce agree­ment would leave Bri­tain out­num­bered and out­ma­neu­vered in fu­ture ne­go­ti­a­tions with the Euro­pean Union.

Ex-Uni­ver­si­ties and Sci­ence Min­is­ter Sam Gy­imah likened the deal to play­ing soc­cer against op­po­nents who “are the ref­eree and they make the rules as well.”

May is bat­tling to per­suade Bri­tish law­mak­ers to back the Brexit agree­ment when Par­lia­ment votes on Dec. 11. She and EU lead­ers say re­ject­ing the divorce terms, which were en­dorsed by the EU last week­end, would leave the U.K. fac­ing a messy, eco­nom­i­cally dam­ag­ing “nodeal” Brexit on March 29.

But many Bri­tish law­mak­ers on both sides of the Brexit de­bate op­pose the deal — Brex­i­teers be­cause it keeps Bri­tain bound closely to the EU, and pro-EU politi­cians be­cause it erects bar­ri­ers be­tween the U.K. and its big­gest trad­ing part­ner.

May, at­tend­ing a Group of 20 sum­mit in Buenos Aires, said the mes­sage she was get­ting from other world lead­ers was the im­por­tance of “cer­tainty” about the Brexit path.

She said at a news con­fer­ence that “pass­ing this deal … will take us to cer­tainty for the fu­ture, and that fail­ure to do that would only lead to uncer­tainty.”

May has ac­knowl­edged the Brexit deal is not per­fect, but says it de­liv­ers on vot­ers' de­ci­sion to leave the EU while re­tain­ing close ties with the bloc, a key trad­ing part­ner and ally.

She got a vote of con­fi­dence Sat­ur­day from Ja­pa­nese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe, who praised May's “lead­er­ship” in seal­ing the Brexit agree­ment. Speak­ing at the G-20 sum­mit, Abe urged May “to avoid no deal, as well as to en­sure trans­parency, pre­dictabil­ity as well as le­gal sta­bil­ity in the Brexit process.”

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