Brexit: Leadsom urges Tories not to be ‘purist’ about Irish backstop

MPs should ‘hold their nerve’ and give May time to seek changes, says Commons leader

Andrea Leadsom has urged Conservative MPs not to be “purist” about the changes Theresa May hopes to secure for the Irish backstop arrangement, as she said the House of Commons must give the prime minister more time for negotiations.

The comments are likely to spark concern among Tory Eurosceptics who have insisted the withdrawal agreement must be reopened and legally binding changes made to the backstop, though MPs differ over whether they would like it removed entirely and replaced or just given a time limit.

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