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Philip Hammond reveals he will quit as chancellor if Boris Johnson becomes PM | Politics News



Philip Hammond has revealed he will resign as chancellor if Boris Johnson wins the Conservative leadership contest.

Mr Hammond said he would quit before being sacked due to his staunch opposition to a no-deal Brexit, something Mr Johnson has not ruled out pursuing if he cannot get changes to Theresa May’s Brexit deal.

“Assuming that Boris Johnson becomes the next prime minister, I understand that his conditions for serving in his government would include accepting a no-deal exit on the 31st October and it’s not something that I could ever sign up to,” he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.

Conservative Party leadership candidate Boris Johnson during a Tory leadership hustings in London
Boris Johnson is widely expected to win the race to succeed Theresa May

“It’s very important that the prime minister is able to have a chancellor who is closely aligned with him in terms of policy and I therefore intend to resign to Theresa May before she goes to the Palace to tender her own resignation on Wednesday.”

Mr Hammond, who has been chancellor since 2016, had been widely expected to leave his role when Mrs May steps down.

He is expected to be a prominent opponent of no-deal from the backbenches.

Mr Hammond put the next PM on notice earlier this week when he and three other ministers supported a bid by MPs to make it more difficult for Mrs May’s successor to suspend parliament in order to force through a no-deal Brexit.

He is the second minister to announce his intention to quit if Mr Johnson defeats Jeremy Hunt in the race for Downing Street.

Justice Secretary David Gauke told the Sunday Times: “Given that I’ve been in the cabinet since Theresa May came to power, I think the appropriate thing is for me to resign to her.”

There is speculation in Westminster that a number of others could follow.

Margot James, who resigned as digital minister on Thursday, told Sky News she thinks others will quit to show their opposition to Mr Johnson’s commitment to leave the EU, deal or no deal, at the end of October.

Defence minister Tobias Ellwood, an opponent of no-deal, did not rule out resigning when questioned on Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday programme.

“I really get frustrated with this energy towards no-deal,” he said.

“I know all my parliamentary colleagues on all sides of the House recognise the dangers of no-deal.

“The fact that we keep talking about it – it isn’t a solution.”

A winner in the contest to succeed Mrs May will be announced on Tuesday, with the victor taking over as PM on Wednesday.

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