Conservative-DUP deal 'would be bad news for women'

"We welcome this commitment, which can provide the stability and certainty the whole country requires as we embark on Brexit and beyond".

The party said Saturday that Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill have quit.

The DUP and the Conservatives have been close political friends for a long time, but the reality of a civil partnership, and not a marriage between the two parties means May will now find herself beholden to a group of ten lawmakers in Northern Ireland, as she attempts to lead the country and commence Brexit negotiations without a parliamentary majority.

She had called the election with the stated reason that it would strengthen her hand in negotiations for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union - the talks are due to start on 19 June.

That timeline now looks even more ambitious than before, not least because May's electoral debacle has emboldened those within her own party who object to her "hard Brexit" approach of leaving the European single market and customs union.

Senior party figures have cautioned against any immediate leadership challenge, saying it would cause only further disruption as Britain prepares to start the Brexit talks as early as June 19.

May put on a courageous face after Thursday's vote, expressing sorrow for the MPs who lost their seats but refusing to acknowledge how her election gamble backfired.

He said: "We have essentially got the result we were campaigning for two years ago".

If the Conservatives form a government with the DUP then this is the kind of rhetoric that will be brought to the forefront of British politics.

There was no mention of what concessions the DUP may have asked for, amid growing concern about the influence of a party opposed to abortion and gay marriage, and which has proved hugely controversial in the past over the homophobic and sectarian views of some of its representatives.

While Ms May's top team has been left unchanged, she will have to fill gaps in her ministerial team after nine junior ministers lost their seats in what has been characterised as a disastrous election night for the ruling party.

We'll see more "pork barrel" politics with special interests of the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland (DUP) becoming dominant.

But Labour said they were the "real winners".

Mr Johnson said: "Mail on Sunday tripe - I am backing Theresa May". "May fights to remain PM", said the front page of the Daily Telegraph, while the Times of London said: "May stares into the abyss".

In a pointed Twitter post linking to a speech describing the legalisation of same-sex marriage as life-changing, the openly gay Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson reminded the potential new partners of the government that she was a "Protestant Unionist about to marry an Irish Catholic". "I certainly think that there will be contact made over the weekend but I think it is too soon to talk about what we're going to do", she said.

  • Leroy Wright