The man tasked with engineering Britain's exit from the European Union faces the humiliating prospect of being constantly reminded over his promise to quit if UK Prime Minister Theresa May's deputy Damian Green was sacked, in the wake of the government investigation into pornography found on his computer and allegations by a Tory activist he behaved inappropriately towards her.
Social media was awash with comments and posts urging Mr. Davis to stand by his threat to resign just hours after the prime minister demanded the resignation of her First Secretary of State after an independent adviser on ministers' interests, Sir Alex Allan, found Mr. Green had breached the strict code.
May I kindly ask David Davis to do something he's never done before — to finally follow through on a promise? To be more specific, I mean his promise to resign if Damian Green left? Asking for a friend.
— Dominic Buxton (@MrDominicBuxton) December 21, 2017
Absolutely right that Damian Green has resigned for misleading statements. Now, will David Davis follow through with his threat to quit? Or were they empty words?https://t.co/IoRRPrIUs0— Caroline Lucas (@CarolineLucas) December 20, 2017
The utter professionalism of David Davis "If Damian Green is sacked, I'll resign". Damian Green gets sacked. David Davis "Err….Did I tell you the one about Brexit Impact Assesments.Oh, we have done that also. Err..Irish border not staying open, oh that also. Err….No comment?" pic.twitter.com/sdwt1igZFQ— Chris Furlong (@SocialistChris) December 20, 2017
When negotiating you need to make sure you're absolutely trustworthy, that your word is your bond.
In unrelated news, David Davis who said he'd resign if Damian Green was sacked, isn't going to resign.— David Schneider (@davidschneider) December 20, 2017
Waiting for @DavidDavisMP to resign as promised given @DamianGreen has gone. I predict he will honour this pledge the same way @Nigel_Farage honours his commitment to leaving Europe but not his pension.— Sophie Walker (@SophieRunning) December 20, 2017
Now it appears the Brexit secretary — who was Mr. Green's boss as shadow home secretary at the time of the police raid on his government office — has had second thoughts over his earlier decision to resign from his crucial position in the negotiations involving the UK's exit from the European bloc.
A source close to Mr. Davis confirmed December 21 he would not quit the government or walk away from the job in hand despite his high-profile stance in support of his cabinet colleague, although one told The Evening Standard: "David would find it quite difficult to stay in his job and not resign if Damian was pushed out because of anything related to what happened 10 years ago."
In an interview, Adam Garrie, an influential UK political analyst, says it remains to be seen how the Brexit secretary will respond although any departure would be a significant blow to the prime minister.
"David Davis is an interesting character. Prior to taking the thankless job as Brexit Secretary, he was always something of a rebel. He once resigned his position from the Shadow Cabinet over his unwavering support for personal privacy and civil liberties, he has criticized the UK for outsourcing torture in contravention of international law, and he defied the leaders of the mainstream parties (including his own) to vote against military aggression on Syria in 2013, " he told Sputnik.
Mr. Garrie, a director of Eurasia Future, added the fact the Brexit talks are something of a running joke, does not do Davis justice, as his previous political career has been one where principle often came before partisan politics.
"That being said, in this day and age, after the prime minister, the Brexit secretary is without doubt the most important person in the cabinet. Davis resigning would be a colossal blow to a government already hanging on to power by a thread. Because of this, received wisdom would say Davis will end up finding some excuse to stay, but because of his very honest past, one cannot totally put it past Davis to do as he said," the commentator added.
Mr. Green has admitted he made "misleading" statements over claims pornography was found on his Commons computer in 2008, although he continues to deny allegations he downloaded or viewed them. A subsequent review by the cabinet secretary found his statements were "inaccurate and misleading."
The First Secretary of State's sacking was precipitated by him "lying" according to Jeremy Hunt, UK health secretary.
Asked if Green was "sacked," the cabinet minister told a radio program: "Yes, I think that is clear, sadly from the letters that were exchanged."
Mr. Hunt added: "He lied on a particular incident, yes. I think lots of people who understand the context would appreciated why that might have happened, but that doesn't make it any more acceptable. I think what this shows is in our democracy we hold cabinet ministers to the very highest standards of conduct, rightly. But I think we should remember that those are standards that would probably not apply in many other countries. And those standards apply even to cabinet ministers who are the most senior, as he was."
The departure of Mrs. May's deputy has left a major hole at the heart of her government with speculation growing over who she could appoint as her replacement, including Mr. Hunt being tipped as a potential successor. He has hinted his interest, saying cabinet appointments "are a matter for the prime minister."
His promotion would not surprise Mr. Garrie, who told Sputnik Hunt "has been a failure in every position he has had, yet he remains the kind of person who can't wait to climb the ladder and fail in even higher places."
The views and opinions expressed by Adam Garrie are those of the expert and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.
The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.