Government whip Paul Maynard, the Tory MP for Blackpool North and Cleveleys, distanced himself from a report in the national press that he told Theresa May she had “betrayed Brexit” and should quit.
According to the article, which was published today, Mr Maynard told the Prime Minister she was also “destroying” the Conservative party, with Mrs May said to have replied: “I’m sorry you feel that way”, according to somebody present at the group Brexit meeting.
But Mr Maynard, inset, told The Gazette he was passing on the thoughts of other MPs, and said: “At the moment, I think all talk of change of leadership makes it harder to deliver Brexit, and all senior ministers need to focus on supporting the deal and delivering Brexit as soon as possible.”
He added: “I should make it clear that I did not tell her that I thought she should resign. Rather, I advised her that a number of the MPs for whom I have responsibility had suggested that were she to indicate her intention to resign, it might make them more inclined to support the deal.”
Blackpool voted overwhelmingly in favour of Brexit at the referendum in 2016, with 67.5 per cent of those who voted in favour of leaving the EU.