Published On: Wed, May 2nd, 2018

D-DAY FOR MAY: PM faces REBELLION of SIXTY Tories as she faces Brexit 'war cabinet'

Dozens of Tory MPs, spearheaded by chief Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg, have warned against compromising Britain’s full exit from the EU – including leaving the single market and customs union.

A report from the European Research Group (ERG) said agreeing a trade partnership with the EU would have “serious risks” and leave further support for the PM impossible – with 60 MPs believed to be onboard.

And now Mrs May has been warned the group of eurosceptic Tories could “collapse” her Government rather than support a customs partnership with the bloc.

An ERG source told the Telegraph: “We have swallowed everything so far – but this is it.

“If they don’t have confidence in Brexit we don’t have confidence in them. The Prime Minister will not have a majority if she does not kill off the New Customs Partnership.”

Today Mrs May will today hold an emergency Brexit war cabinet, where she will face serious questioning from Brexiteer front-benchers including David Fox, David Davis, Michael Gove and Boris Johnson.

Another source said: “The four are unambiguous in thinking this is a terrible idea.”

The ERG is led by Mr Rees-Mogg and counts Mr Gove, Mr Fox, Mr Davis, Iain Duncan Smith, Sajid Javid, Douglas Cardwell and Andrea Leadsmen among its high-profile members.

They strongly oppose a customs partnership, which could see the UK collect tax on behalf of the EU or impose tariffs in exchange for part-access to the European market.

This is seen as one possible solution to avoiding a hard border in Ireland, which will become the only land barrier between the EU and UK after Brexit.

Mr Davis has previously said such a partnership could be “incompatible with the Conservative party manifesto”.

The ERG’s 30-page report, titled ‘Memorandum – the New Customs Partnership’, said other options must be sought to avoid a hard border such as – unspecified – technological solutions.

Every technological solution proposed by the Government or Brexit pressure groups to avoid a hard border, including CCTV cameras, automatic scanners and even airships used to monitor customs from the air, has so far has been rejected by an increasingly baffled Irish government as unworkable.

A huge meeting of ERG members will be held on Tuesday next week, when the full Cabinet will meet to confirm a deal.

Mr Duncan-Smith said a customs partnership would leave the Government “bogged down in a complete and total mess”.

He said: “The customs partnership is a non-starter and that report kills it stone dead.

“Now is the opportunity to say ‘enough’s enough’ – you either want to make an arrangement or you don’t.”

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