Britain's most senior official in charge of negotiating the country's exit from the European Union has resigned, two days after Prime Minister Theresa May announced she had finally united her quarrelsome government behind a plan for Brexit.
Conservative MP Peter Bone hailed Mr Davis' resignation as a "principled and fearless decision", adding: "The PM's proposals for a Brexit in name only are not acceptable". "Well done David Davis for having the principle and guts to resign". Mrs May must be expecting others to go with Davis, and will be particularly keen to know what the likes of Mr Johnson and fellow Brexiteer Andrea Leadsom intend to do now.
Mr Davis said the "current trend of policy and tactics" was making it look "less and less likely" that Brexit would deliver on the referendum result and the Tory commitments to leave the EU customs union and single market.
The double resignation late on Sunday has the potential to derail May's government and set in motion a chain of events that could lead to an attempt to oust her as prime minister.
"The general direction of policy will leave us in at best a weak negotiating position, and possibly an inescapable one", Davis said in a letter to May.
In an ominous warning to the Prime Minister, about 60 per cent of those surveyed by the ConservativeHome website said the deal as outlined so far would be bad for Britain if implemented, and the same proportion said they would not support it.
May won the backing of her Cabinet on Friday for a plan that would create a "U.K. -EU free trade area".
BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg said she understands Mr Davis was "furious" after a meeting at Number 10 earlier on Sunday and "concluded he could not stay in post".
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Davis' resignation was also accompanied by the resignation of his deputy, Brexit minister Steve Baker, according to the Telegraph.
Less than nine months remain until Britain leaves the bloc on March 29, 2019, and the European Union has warned Britain repeatedly that time is running out to seal a divorce deal.
On Monday, May is due to brief MPs on the plan hammered out during a 12-hour meeting at Chequers, the prime minister's country retreat.
Jacob Rees-Mogg, chair of the European Research Group of Tory Europsceptic MPs was being urged to run for leader, with one even naming him as "our Churchill".
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said Mrs May was "incapable of delivering Brexit".
It seemed like the most damaging line to emerge from the summit was Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson's description of the plans as a "turd".
Veteran Tory Eurosceptic Sir Bill Cash told Sky that discussions were now being held as to whether Mrs May's plans amounted to a "proper Brexit".
I call on the Prime Minister to see sense and bring forward a plan that heeds the mounting evidence against a hard Brexit from opposition parties, the business community and the devolved administrations.