Boris Johnson has revealed that at least one member of his family supports his Brexit stance – his mum.
The PM said: “I want you to know, conference, I have kept my ace up my sleeve. My mother voted Leave.”
He added: “My mother taught me to believe strongly in the equal importance, the equal dignity, the equal worth of every human being on the planet."
Mr Johnson’s relationship with his family has been questioned in recent weeks.
Jo Johnson resigned from his brother’s Cabinet because he disagreed with him over Brexit, and Rachel Johnson has suggested that the PM had been influenced by billionaires who wanted to make money out of a no-deal Brexit. Boris Johnson has denied this.
Writer Ms Johnson was also unhappy with the PM’s comments in the House of Commons last week when he mentioned the murdered MP Jo Cox.
But she reacted positively to her brother mentioning their mother at the conference and confirmed in a tweet that the PM was telling the truth about her vote.
Much enjoyed my brother @BorisJohnson's speech to conference especially the tribute to our mother and yes I can confirm, for those who are asking yes she did Vote Leave and wants to Get Brexit Done— Rachel Johnson (@RachelSJohnson) October 2, 2019
Boris Johnson said this week he would worry about spending Christmas with his family after the country had left the EU on 31 October.
In the rest of his keynote speech the PM urged Brussels to compromise as he put forward “constructive and reasonable proposals” to resolve the Brexit deadlock.
He insisted the UK was ready to leave without a deal on 31 Octobe if the European Union refused to work with him on reaching an agreement.
Mr Johnson said his plan to replace the Irish backstop would “in no circumstances” result in checks at or near the border in Northern Ireland.
He added: “Today in Brussels we are tabling what I believe are constructive and reasonable proposals which provide a compromise for both sides.
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“We will under no circumstances have checks at or near the border in Northern Ireland.
“We will respect the peace process and the Good Friday agreement
“And by a process of renewable democratic consent by the executive and assembly of Northern Ireland we will go further and protect the existing regulatory arrangements for farmers and other businesses on both sides of the border.
“And at the same time we will allow the UK – whole and entire – to withdraw from the EU, with control of our own trade policy from the start. ”
Who is Boris Johnson’s mother Charlotte Johnson Wahl?
Charlotte Johnson Wahl is Boris Johnson, Jo Johnson, Rachel Johnson and Leo Johnson’s mother.
The 77-year-old read English at Oxford University in the 1960s, where she met their father Stanley Johnson.
The two married in London in 1963 and she became the first woman to be married while taking an undergraduate course at Lady Margaret Hall.
Ms Wahl divorced Mr Johnson in 1979 and later married US professor Nicholas Wahl in 1988. Prof Wahl died in 1996.