David Cameron: Theresa May should listen to other parties on Brexit
Former PM joins other former Tory leaders Hague and Major in urging Theresa May to exercise caution on Brexit
David Cameron - PA
David Cameron has called on Theresa May to work with other parties in forming Britain’s plan for Brexit in the wake of last week’s election result.
In comments reported by the Financial Times the former prime minister told a business conference in Poland there would now be fresh pressure for a “softer Brexit” and that Parliament “deserves a say” on the matter.
“It’s going to be difficult, there’s no doubt about that, but perhaps an opportunity to consult more widely with the other parties on how best we can achieve it,” he said.
"Over Brexit, she is going to have to talk more widely, listen to other parties."
The ex-Conservative leader also said that the Scottish Tories would seek greater influence on the UK’s exit after returning to Westminster with 13 MPs.
"There's no doubt that there is a new player on the stage. Scotland voted against Brexit,” he said.
“I think most of the Scottish Conservatives will want to see perhaps some changes with the policy going forward."
Cameron's comments follow interventions by other former Tory leaders Sir John Major and William Hague.
Major also warned yesterday against a so-called hard Brexit and called on Theresa May to “negotiate a better deal on free movement” and the EU single market.
“A hard Brexit was not endorsed by the electorate,” he told the World at One.
The UK cannot sign its own trade deals inside the customs union, and staying within the agreement would scupper Mrs May’s pursuit of an independent trade policy.
Philip Hammond, the Chancellor, is reportedly set to lead calls within the Cabinet for Britain to remain inside the EU customs union to limit the impact of withdrawal on trade.
Sources have told the Times that Hammond is in “street-fighting mode” as he seeks to convince fellow ministers that they should rethink their decision to quit the customs union.
“I don’t think it is possible to stay in the single market but the customs union is where it gets more interesting. We need to make sure we explore options fully,” one Cabinet minister said.
A senior Tory Brexiteer told the paper there was a push by some in the Cabinet “secure a very different relationship with the EU” after the election which saw the Tories lose their Commons majority.
“There is a great deal of concern that they are changing Brexit,” they said.
May is still seeking to secure a deal with the DUP to support her minority government. Downing Street said that the talks so far have been “very positive”.
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