Chancellor Philip Hammond has confirmed he will resign if Boris Johnson is confirmed as Britain’s next Prime Minister.
Asked by the BBC if he thought he was going to be sacked, Hammond replied: “I’m sure I’m not going to be sacked because I intend to resign before we get to that point.
“Assuming that Boris Johnson becomes the next Prime Minister, I understand that the conditions of serving in his government would include accepting a no-deal exit on 31 October.
“That is not something I could ever sign up to, it is very important that a Prime Minister is able to have a chancellor that is closely aligned to 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.”
David Gauke, the justice secretary, also confirmed he will stand down after Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday in an article in the Sunday Times, while Rory Stewart, the international development secretary, is thought to be among a number of Tory MPs who are preparing to quit.
“If the test of loyalty to stay in the cabinet is a commitment to support no-deal on October 31 — which, to be fair to him, Boris has consistently said — then that’s not something I’m prepared to sign up to,” Gauke said.
“I recognise that this spell in government is coming to an end. 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.”
Hammond said he would support Johnson and his rival, Hunt, if they attempted to secure a deal with the EU.
He poured cold water over the idea that Britain could be taken out of the EU. He said the circumstances of a parliamentary recess in the UK and EU meant it was not possible to leave the EU on 31 October, despite Johnson’s insistence that this was a “do or die” deadline.