Conservatives, DUP agree to 'confidence and supply' deal on government

Thursday's United Kingdom general election saw the Conservatives lose more seats than expected in Parliament, while the Labour gained more seats than expected.

Tory chief whip Gavin Williamson went to Belfast on Saturday for talks with the Northern Irish party.

The DUP have not yet confirmed the news of the agreement and said talks were continuing on an agreement.

May's Conservatives lost their parliamentary majority in Thursday's vote and need the support of the 10 MPs from Northern Ireland's DUP to have a majority. The outlined agreement "will be put forward for discussion and agreement" at cabinet meeting on Monday, one day before the new parliament is set to met, he added.

So what is a confidence and supply agreement and how will it work in the UK?

"The DUP today (Saturday) held discussions with representatives of the Conservative Party in line with Arlene Foster's commitment to explore how we might bring stability to the nation at this time of great challenge".

Sources later told Sky Source that Downing Street had issued the wrong statement in error.

He said: "The actions of this government will have profound implications for the Brexit negotiations and the future of our country".

Following the announcement, the Lib Dems called on Mrs May to make the terms of her deal with the DUP "clear to the British people immediately".

"I don't think Theresa May and this government have any credibility".

Confidence and supply arrangements allow minority governments to be sure it will win key votes.

However it is the prime minister herself who now finds herself reliant on a minor socially conservative party from Northern Ireland to let her govern.

Following the deal, Prime Minister Theresa May will shape her new cabinet to form the new United Kingdom government next week.

It appeared Ms May had decided she needed the strength of coalition to bolster her chances of keeping her Government alive, amid growing pressure from angry Tory MPs and members.

A spokesman for Mr Johnson said: "The Foreign Secretary is 100% supporting the PM and working with her to get the best deal for Britain".

"There's a possibility of voting the Queen's Speech down and we're going to push that all the way".

However, it was thought the DUP was wary of coalition, given the miserable fate of the Liberal Democrats after entering government with the Conservatives.

The party's calls for increases in the personal tax allowance, continued rises in the national living wage, renewal of the Trident nuclear deterrent and revisiting terrorism laws are all similar to Conservative policy. The then deputy first minister of Northern Ireland, Martin McGuiness, resigned over Foster's failure to adequately deal with the issues, and the power-sharing executive collapsed. "We are acting in the interest of the whole of the United Kingdom".

May's authority over her party was shattered by the election result.

What is a "confidence and supply" deal?

It would mean the DUP backing the Government on its Budget and other key votes and - crucially - preventing it being brought down by motions of no confidence.

Strikingly, her Cabinet again failed to come out publicly to support her and her planned reshuffle had to be postponed amid the turmoil.

A "confidence and supply" arrangement is a far looser deal than a formal coalition.

  • Zachary Reyes