Government - Key May Ally Quits Over Brexit
UK Prime Minister Theresa May had already lost 41 ministers since the 2017 election, but the 42nd had to hurt: Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom quit the cabinet after losing faith in the Conservative PM's ability to deliver the Brexit.
In her resignation letter, Leadsom cited "some uncomfortable compromises" in May's latest offer to get MPs to vote for the deal she negotiated with the European Union to allow the UK to leave; specifically, the suggestion of holding a second referendum allowing Brits to decide if they actually want to go through with it, which she believes would be "dangerously divisive".
Leadsom praised May's "integrity, resolution, and determination", but signaled she'd mount her own bid for the Tory leadership.
Some in Whitehall are wondering why Leadsom stuck around as long as she did, while others note she's leaving pretty late in the saga. The Prime Minister on Friday is expected to announce the date on which she will step down, and it's more or less under threat from the influential 1922 Committee of back-benchers who will try to force May out if she doesn't go willingly.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said May had "days left in her job" and challenged her to allow Conservative MPs to have a free vote on the second Brexit referendum. "If the government believes this is the best deal for the economy and for jobs, they should not fear putting that to the people," Corbyn said