British PM under fresh pressure as top aides quit
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 12, 2017,
Jun 12, 2017, 2:35
Ruth Davidson says she has spoken to Theresa May about her concerns over a deal with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) following Thursday's general election, and won assurances that gay marriage in Britain will not be compromised.
The strength of any deal looks set to be tested when the Commons meets, with Jeremy Corbyn vowing to try to bring down the Government by defeating May in Parliament and insisting: "I can still be prime minister".
The fallout from Thursday's snap general election, which left her Conservative Party bereft of their majority, also prompted her to seek out a relatively tiny ally that could have vast sway over what happens next in the United Kingdom.
With just 10 members of Parliament, the DUP doesn't wield much power on its own - but those seats, if they vote with May's party, have the power to push the Conservatives over the threshold to a functioning government.
Downing Street announced Saturday night that the Conservatives had agreed in principle to a deal with the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland that will give May an extremely narrow majority in Parliament.
"We will welcome any such deal being agreed, as it will provide the stability and certainty the whole country requires as we embark on Brexit and beyond", Downing Street said in a statement.
"The details will be put forward for discussion and agreement at a Cabinet meeting on Monday".
May called the early election when her party was comfortably ahead in the polls, in the hope of increasing her majority and strengthening Britain's hand in exit talks with the EU.
Tory ire focused on two of May's closest advisers - Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill - who were responsible for the campaign and the party manifesto that contained plans about social care that raised many hackles, seen to have cost the party several votes and seats.
May is clinging to power despite losing her Commons majority.
The agreement came after Theresa May sent her Chief Whip Gavin Williamson to Belfast to negotiate with the Northern Irish party.
Anna Soubry, another senior Conservative politician, told the BBC Friday that May should "consider her position".
May was expected to make further appointments over the weekend, particularly the several junior ministers who lost the election.
May is under pressure after the Conservatives lost their parliamentary majority in Thursday's election. The DUP won 10 seats.
She seems secure for the immediate future, because senior Conservatives don't want to plunge the party into a damaging leadership contest.
May put on a fearless face after Thursday's vote, expressing sorrow for the MPs who lost their seats but refusing to acknowledge how her election gamble backfired.
The DUP statement put Downing Street on the back foot, prompting a carefully worded response in the early hours of Sunday.
When asked if she would continue her term in office May said, "I said during the election campaign that if re-elected I would intend to serve a full term".