Theresa May dismisses calls for 2nd Brexit vote as ninth parliament member resigns

The British prime minister dismissed any calls for a second referendum vote on the country’s departure from the European Union, standing behind her plan that sparked the ninth resignation of a parliament member on Monday.

A spokesperson for Theresa May reiterated the leader’s belief that her plan for leaving the EU was the only way to get a deal that meets the government’s needs.

“The British public have votes to leave the European Union. There is not going to be a second referendum … under any circumstances,” the spokesman told reporters.

There is mounting pressure on May coming from both sides of the Brexit debate. Her recent white paper outlining plans for a “common rule book” with the EU over trade in goods has infuriated those who favor a complete break.


May said Monday that her plan honors the wishes of British voters – who in June 2016 backed Brexit in a 52 percent to 48 percent vote – while also protecting industry and security.

“Our proposal sets out the right deal for the U.K. – honoring the democratic decision of the British people, protecting the integrity of our precious union, supporting growth, maintaining security and safeguarding British jobs,” May said at the opening of the Farnborough Airshow. “We will take back control of our borders, our laws and our money. But we will do so in a way that is good for business and good for our future prosperity.”

The plan sparked widespread criticism and the apparent beginning of an exodus from government officials and parliament members.

Boris Johnson, a rival to May, quit last week as foreign secretary in protest, while the man who had been leading the Brexit negotiations, David Davis, also quit in protest.

On Monday, MP Scott Mann was the ninth Conservative to resign in protest to May’s plan.

“It is with great deal of sadness that I have tendered my resignation as a Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Treasury,” Mann said in a Twitter post in which he shared his resignation letter.

May warned party rebels on Sunday they should fall into line, saying wrecking her Brexit blueprint could result in disaster.

"We need to keep our eyes on the prize. If we don't, we risk ending up with no Brexit at all," she wrote in an article in the Mail on Sunday newspaper.


She acknowledged that some lawmakers had doubts about her plans to stick to a "common rule book" with the bloc for goods and agricultural products in return for free trade, without tariffs or border customs checks, but insisted she couldn't see a viable alternative.

Parliament will debate aspects of the Brexit plan later Monday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.