Andrea Leadsom, who has clearly appointed herself a spokesperson for the infamous ‘Pizza Club’ group of Brexiteer Cabinet Ministers, has warned the UK could not be “trapped” in an EU customs union. Michael Gove is allegedly leading the efforts of the group of five, which also includes Penny Mordaunt, Liam Fox and Chris Grayling, to ‘salvage’ a different kind of deal.
Apparently, they think they can ‘have more influence’ inside the Cabinet. A ‘Cabinet Source’ told The Sun: “May has made clear that she won’t allow the backstop to be unpicked, so Michael and the others will now wait to see if it falls at the meaningful vote. But the political declaration on the future trade deal can be improved, as that’s still being negotiated right up to the summit. That’s where they feel they can have real effect now.”
Mrs May has however made it clear there will be no renegotiation: The PM told Sky News: “Just think about if you took out an insurance policy, and if you were coming up to the point where that insurance policy was being used, and suddenly people pull the plug on it for you? What would you think?” She added: “We agreed the withdrawal agreement in principle last week. The focus this week will be on the future relationship”.
It seems to me that members of the ‘Pizza Club’ see what allows them to square their conscience with keeping their feet under the Cabinet table and the only thing they are derailing is the efforts by Tory Brexiteers to unseat Mrs May.