Cabinet backs Chris Grayling after ferry fiasco, says minister

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Transport minister???s Brexit plans going ???positively???, claims colleague amid sacking calls

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has faced calls to resign after a controversial no-deal Brexit ferry contract was cancelled. Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA

A ministerial colleague of Chris Grayling has insisted the cabinet still supports the beleaguered transport secretary, amid pressure on him to step down over the cancellation of a Brexit-related ferry contract awarded to a company with no ships.

The backing from James Brokenshire, the communities secretary, came as the Irish government dismissed the idea that it had influenced the demise of the ??13.8m deal with the startup firm Seaborne Freight.

After the news emerged, several MPs said Theresa May should sack Grayling. Bob Kerslake, the former head of the civil service, said the arrangement would ???just confirm the view of many that this country is in a mess???.

Asked if he had confidence in Grayling, Brokenshire told the BBC???s Andrew Marr Show that the transport secretary had ???done a huge amount of work to prepare for our departure from the EU???.

Pressed on whether this meant he had faith in Grayling, Brokenshire said: ???Yes, I think Chris has done a really tough job, really, really positively to ensure that we are well prepared. I strongly endorse all the work Chris has been doing.???

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