A leading Tory moderate, Sir Mike Penning, has said in an interview that the Government’s Chequers plan, is as “dead as a dodo.”
The former Minister, who is a key ally of the Prime Minister, has said that the obstinacy in the current approach is only pushing MPs like him to join forces with the more hard-Brexit backing European Research Group, run by Jacob Rees-Mogg.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Sir Mike said: “We’re just seeing this all from one end of a telescope and she needs to immediately now turn that telescope around.
“Because if she comes back with Chequers it’s dead as a dodo.”
He went on: “To say to the likes of myself, ‘it’s Chequers or a hard Brexit’, it’s like making us sit on the naughty step at school.”
The shock intervention by a former ally, comes as Mrs May prepares for bilateral meetings with EU leader in Salzburg in a bid to sell her Chequers proposals, which would see the UK stay in a single market for goods and adhering to a ‘common rule book’.
This has been met with strong criticisms from all sides of the argument.
Former Brexit Secretary David Davis, will speak today in Munich, where he will say that:
“The EU is often correctly described as having a democratic deficit. But Chequers is devoid of democracy altogether.”
He will add that “for me, the Chequers plan was always a non-starter,” and insist he will unveil his own “more ambitious” plans “shortly”.