Former British Conservative minister calls for second Brexit referendum

Justine Greening said Parliament is 'stuck in a stalemate' over the issue

Former British Conservative minister calls for second Brexit referendum

Justine Greening, who has said other senior Conservatives quietly back a second Brexit referendum. Picture by: David Mirzoeff/PA Wire/PA Images

A former Conservative minister in the UK has called for a second Brexit referendum, amid continuing political turmoil over Theresa May's Brexit plans.

Justine Greening - a Tory MP who served as education secretary until she resigned earlier this year - described the details in the British government's much-heralded white paper as a 'fudge'.

She suggested that Parliament is 'stuck in a stalemate' over the issue.

Writing in The Times, she argued: "Even with a free vote on the final deal in parliament, it still means that in every constituency - mine was mainly Remain - there will inevitably be people disenfranchised by their MP’s vote, despite Brexit shaping all our lives for decades to come. That’s unacceptable.

"The only solution is to take the final Brexit decision out of the hands of deadlocked politicians, away from the backroom deals, and give it back to the people."

However, some commentators cast doubt over the possibility of a second referendum due to the short timeframe until Britain is scheduled to leave the EU in March.

Both Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn have dismissed calls for a second referendum, although a number of Labour politicians have backed the proposal.

The Liberal Democrats are also calling for a second vote.

The latest development comes amid a series of Conservative resignations over the Brexit plans, including the departure of Brexit secretary David Davis and foreign secretary Boris Johnson from Mrs May's cabinet last week.

This morning, MP Scott Mann became the latest MP to step down from a junior position as a parliamentary private secretary - saying he was not prepared to deliver a "watered down Brexit".

Mrs May, meanwhile, faces more key votes in parliament today over a cross-border trade bill, with a series of amendments being put forward from both the opposition and rebels within the Conservative party.