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Cornish MP Sarah Newton resigned from Government over Brexit vote to 'honour constituents'

A Cornish MP has become the latest minister to resign from Government following her stance on Brexit - to honour a promise to her constituents.

Falmouth and Truro MP Sarah Newton quit her position as a minister at the Department for Work and Pensions after defying Theresa May to block No Deal completely.

She was one of 17 Conservatives who chose to vote against the party - and is the 15th member of the Government to resign over Brexit.

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In her first interview since her resignation Mrs Newton said she resigned to "honour my commitment to my constituents, to leave the EU with ‘a deal’."

Last night was a really important vote, when I got up in the morning I did not expect to be resigning, I wanted to support the Prime Minister, but because of the sequence of events with the amendments, it was my last opportunity to do what I have always committed to my constituents, that if there was a vote in this house to say we won't leave the EU without a deal that I would do that.

It was very much about honouring a long-standing commitment to my constituents.

– Sarah Newton MP

Ms Newton is the second minister from Cornwall to resign over the issue in a fortnight, after Camborne and Redruth MP George Eustice resigned as Agriculture Minister.

Mr Eustice said his decision allowed him to be "free to participate in the critical debate that will take place".

  • WHO IS SARAH NEWTON?

Mrs Newton was elected in 2010 and became the first person to win the newly created seat of Truro and Falmouth as boundary changes meant Cornwall increased its MPs from five to six. She has held it ever since.

The former director of Age Concern England was a Government whip with departmental responsibility for Defra between May 2015 and July 2016.

She later moved to the Home Office as Parliamentary under-secretary of state for crime, safeguarding and vulnerability.

The mother-of-three, who backed Theresa May in the Tory leadership election in 2016, was later appointed minister for disabled people, health and work, before becoming work and pensions minister in November 2017.