Tory leadership contest: Javid says ‘No, no, no’ to second referendum

Sajid Javid Image copyright AFP/Getty
Image caption The home secretary said “No, no, no” to a second referendum, a general election and revoking Article 50

Tory leadership hopeful Sajid Javid has ruled out a second referendum, a general election and revoking Article 50 if he becomes the next PM.

Writing in Saturday’s Daily Mail, the home secretary said another vote “would be disastrous for trust in politics”.

He said he planned to negotiate an amendment to the Irish backstop “directly with Ireland” to get a deal that could pass through Parliament.

And he also said the UK “must prepare fully” for a no-deal Brexit.

In his article, he said after Tory defeats in local and European elections “the British people’s frustration and the need to make good on the referendum have never been greater”.

He invoked Margaret Thatcher’s 1990 parliamentary speech on Europe, by saying “No, no, no” to a second referendum, a general election and revoking Article 50.

“Never in this country’s history have we asked people to go to the polls a second time without implementing their verdict from the first,” said Mr Javid, who supported Remain in the 2016 referendum.

What is Sajid Javid’s five point plan?

  • Rule out a second referendum, an early general election or revoking Article 50
  • Prepare fully for a no-deal Brexit
  • Find a deal that can be approved by Parliament
  • Work with Ireland to amend the Irish backstop to include a time limit or exit clause
  • Either get a revised deal through Parliament or – “with great regret” leave without one on 31 October

Mr Javid’s candidacy for the Conservative Party leadership comes after Prime Minister Theresa May announced she will resign as leader on 7 June.

The 12 Tory leadership candidates have clashed over whether to pursue a no-deal Brexit if a withdrawal agreement cannot be passed by Parliament.

Both Mr Javid and former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson have said they are prepared to leave the EU without a deal, if necessary.

Image caption Jeremy Hunt, Boris Johnson, Rory Stewart and Esther McVey are all running in the Tory leadership contest

But Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said trying to push through a no-deal Brexit would be committing “political suicide”, although he agreed the option had to remain on the negotiating table.

Fellow leadership hopeful Esther McVey said “political suicide” would be not leaving the EU on 31 October.

International Development Secretary and leadership candidate Rory Stewart ruled out serving under Boris Johnson because his vision of Brexit was “undeliverable, unnecessary and is going to damage our country and economy”.

The party said it hoped a new leader could be in place by the end of July.

On Saturday US president Donald Trump, who will arrive for a state visit to the UK on Monday, said Mr Johnson would be an “excellent” choice for the Conservative Party leadership.

Who will replace Theresa May?

The winner of the contest to lead the Conservative Party will become the next prime minister.



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