Two former Conservative prime ministers have also urged May to soften her approach.
“May has lost all authority on Brexit and everything else”.
“My clear view, and I believe the view of the majority of people in Britain, is that we should prioritise protecting jobs, protecting economic growth, protecting prosperity as we enter those negotiations”, Hammond told reporters before a meeting of the 28 European Union finance ministers in Luxembourg.
As of yet, it is understood that no date for opening the formal negotiations has been agreed.
The Conservative source said this meant the party was “confident” it had enough votes for the programme to be approved, after May suffered a disastrous setback in snap elections a week ago that saw her lose her majority in the 650-seat House of Commons, just ahead of crucial Brexit negotiations with Brussels.
The other 27, including lead powers Germany and France, want to dissuade others from emulating Britain and so insist that any Brexit deal must be less advantageous than full membership.
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson, whose 13 MPs saved May from election disaster, said the government should “think again” about its approach. I read yesterday “Open Brexit” too!
Brexit talks in Brussels on Monday will focus on the status of expats, the UK’s “divorce bill” and the Northern Ireland border, rather than on future trade relations with the European Union, it has been confirmed.
If the parties still can not agree a deal by June 29, then the Northern Irish assembly s powers returned to the United Kingdom government.
A senior Brussels official said the amount, which compares to London’s annual net European Union payment of around 10 billion euros, would still be “peanuts” in terms of the overall economy and also that the final bill would be determined less by technical and legal arguments than by hard-headed political horse-trading.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said on Sunday that the plans were unchanged but added it was “very, very important that we’re careful about the existing trade that we do with Europe, about access to the single market”.
Brexit minister David Davis took a harder tone, however, when he took to the airwaves on Monday.
Hundreds of protesters chanting “we want justice” stormed a local town hall on Friday afternoon and May had to leave a meeting with residents under heavy police guard.
Asked about the possibility of a Norway option, he answered: “We’re not going down that route”.
“The only conclusion I can draw.is that the election has changed absolutely nothing for Brexit”.