SAJID Javid became the latest Tory leadership candidate to refuse to rule out extending Brexit beyond October 31.
He repeatedly dodged the chance to categorically pledge to take Britain out of the EU by Halloween.
The Home Secretary said he “cannot envisage circumstances” where he would ask for a further delay but said he would not override Parliament if it voted against No Deal.
Fellow Cabinet leadership contender Michael Gove faced a furious backlash from Brexiteers yesterday after opening the door to delaying Brexit until the end of next year.
A Gove campaign source said: “Michael is ready to deliver Brexit at the earliest possible opportunity.
“Simply trying to go for no deal before the UK is properly prepared will lead to a general election with Jeremy Corbyn in Downing Street and risks Brexit being cancelled altogether.
“These are the most complex negotiations in our peacetime history, it’s not enough to believe in Brexit, you’ve got to be able to deliver it.”
In a joint article on the Telegraph website former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith and ex-Cabinet minister Priti Patel warned: “Any Tory who won’t take us out of the EU by October 31st doesn’t deserve to be PM.”
Speaking on the Andrew Marr Show yesterday, Mr Javid said: “I’m clear that my plan would be to leave on October 31. I want to leave with a deal but if I have to choose between no deal and no Brexit I would pick no deal.
Pressed on the matter, he said: “That’s not something I would do, but we are a parliamentary democracy and what we’ve seen in the last few months is Parliament has taken on some extraordinary powers to initiate its own legislation so if it’s statute, if it’s the law, I would not break the law if I was prime minister, of course I would observe the law.”
Meanwhile Andrea Leadsom – who is also running for leader – said she would not seek to renegotiate Mrs May’s deal and vowed to leave the EU by the end of October in a “managed exit”.
She said she would not take Britain out of the EU without a deal, instead insisting she would follow her “three-step plan for a managed exit”.
SAJ ON INFRASTRUCTURE
Last night Mr Javid announced plans to establish a £100 billion fund to invest in UK infrastructure and re-balance the economy if he becomes the next prime minister.
The Tory leadership hopeful said investment had been focused on London and the South East for “too long” – leaving other parts of the country feeling left behind.
He pledged to “urgently” address the issue with a fund to create new jobs, improve transport links and upgrade connectivity across Britain.
Mr Javid said the fund, which would scale up over five years and be based outside London, could be used to accelerate the rollout of the fibre optic network and invest in rail infrastructure in the North, such as proposals for HS3 – a high-speed line linking major northern cities.
Mr Javid said: “Much of our infrastructure is creaking and in desperate need of upgrading. And for too long much of our investment has been focused on London and the South East, leaving other parts of our country feeling left behind.
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“We urgently need to address these issues. That’s why as prime minister I would establish a £100 billion fund, based outside London, to invest in UK infrastructure, helping create new well-paid jobs, improve transport links, and upgrade connectivity across the UK.
“By building new infrastructure and delivering prosperity in all parts of the country we can create a more united country, in which everyone can get the opportunity to get on in life.”
Mr Javid confirmed on Sunday that he would continue with the HS2 project if he enters No10.
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