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Apologetic PM May vows to get Tories 'out of this mess' with softer Brexit on the agenda

Theresa May meets DUP: Arlene Foster at Number 10 for government talks [Photos] Close

DUP leader Arlene Foster and MP Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

DUP leader Arlene Foster and MP Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  DUP leader Arlene Foster checks her watch as she and MP Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist party's ten Westminster seats.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: DUP leader Arlene Foster checks her watch as she and MP Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist party's ten Westminster seats. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration.Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration.Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

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Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (L), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (L), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration. Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration. Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

PA

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (R), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (R), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  DUP leader Arlene Foster checks her watch as she arrives at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist party's ten Westminster seats.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: DUP leader Arlene Foster checks her watch as she arrives at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist party's ten Westminster seats. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (L), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Arlene Foster (L), and DUP Deputy Leader Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017, for a meeting with Britain's Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Theresa May. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with the DUP on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration. Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

DUP leader Arlene Foster and DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds arriving at 10 Downing Street in London for talks on a deal to prop up a Tory minority administration. Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

PA

Britain's Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union David Davis arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union David Davis arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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International Trade Secretary Liam Fox arrives at 10 Downing Street in London for a Cabinet meeting. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday June 13, 2017. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

International Trade Secretary Liam Fox arrives at 10 Downing Street in London for a Cabinet meeting. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday June 13, 2017. See PA story POLITICS Election. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

PA

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Work and Pensions David Gauke arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Work and Pensions David Gauke arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Leon Neal/Getty Images)

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Britain's Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary Michael Gove arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary Michael Gove arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for International Development Priti Patel arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for International Development Priti Patel arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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Britain's Home Secretary Amber Rudd arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Home Secretary Amber Rudd arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice David Lidington arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice David Lidington arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13:  Secretary of State for Northern Ireland James Brokenshire arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 13: Secretary of State for Northern Ireland James Brokenshire arrives at Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. The Prime Minister has re-shuffled her cabinet after the snap general election which failed to return a clear overall majority winner. Theresa May is set to meet Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party leader Arlene Foster later today in hope of making an agreement to form a minority Government. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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Britain's Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017.
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

Britain's Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire arrives for a Cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in central London on June 13, 2017. British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday was heading into difficult talks with a hardline Northern Irish party on securing a working majority after a crushing electoral setback. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

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BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - JUNE 12: DUP leader Arlene Foster holds a press conference at Stormont Castle as the Stormont assembly power sharing negotiations reconvene following the general election on June 12, 2017 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are also continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist parties ten Westminster seats. Stormont and the political situation in Northern Ireland has been in limbo following the collapse of the power sharing executive due to the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme scandal which implicated the DUP. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - JUNE 12: DUP leader Arlene Foster holds a press conference at Stormont Castle as the Stormont assembly power sharing negotiations reconvene following the general election on June 12, 2017 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Discussions between the DUP and the Conservative party are also continuing in the wake of the UK general election as Prime Minister Theresa May looks to form a government with the help of the Democratic Unionist parties ten Westminster seats. Stormont and the political situation in Northern Ireland has been in limbo following the collapse of the power sharing executive due to the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme scandal which implicated the DUP. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

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DUP leader Arlene Foster and MP Nigel Dodds arrive at 10 Downing Street on June 13, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

Pressure on Theresa May to pursue a more cross-party approach to Brexit with greater focus on the economy is growing, amid reports of secret talks between Cabinet ministers and Labour MPs.

It comes after the Prime Minister told Tory MPs "I'm the person who got us into this mess and I'm the one who will get us out of it", at a crunch Conservative Party meeting in Parliament.

Scottish Conservatives' leader Ruth Davidson, whose influence has grown dramatically with the election of 13 Tories north of the border, has already broken cover to say "this isn't just going to be a Tory Brexit".

Mrs May's weakened position in the House of Commons as a result of losing her majority has fuelled speculation the Tories would be forced to soften their stance on Brexit.

The Evening Standard, edited by Tory former chancellor George Osborne, and the Daily Telegraph, have reported that Cabinet ministers have initiated talks with Labour MPs to secure cross-party backing for a softer Brexit.

Ms Davidson was the first senior Tory to break cover with calls for a change in approach.

After attending the Prime Minister's political cabinet on Monday, she told BBC News: "I'm suggesting that the Conservative Party works with those both within the House of Commons and with people outside to ensure that as we leave the EU we have a Brexit that works for the economy and puts that first.

"There was a real sense around the Cabinet table today, as you would expect from centre right politicians, that that is the primacy we're looking for."

Ms Davidson suggested the government may shift its priority from cutting immigration to ensuring a good deal for business and the economy.

After Mrs May apologised to the 1922 Committee of backbench Tory MPs for her poor election performance yesterday, some of those present suggested the PM would consult more with business on her approach to the Brexit talks.

Ms Davidson said: "We do have to make sure that we invite other people in now. This isn't just going to be a Tory Brexit, this is going to have to involve the whole country.

"We can make a big, bold offer that brings the country with us, that brings people in from the other side of the aisle in the House of Commons but also brings people in from outside the Commons too."

Mrs May also sought to reassure MPs that any confidence and supply deal with the DUP to prop up her minority administration would not affect power-sharing talks in Northern Ireland or LGBT rights.

It came as her most senior minister, Damian Green, confirmed that the Queen's Speech, due to set out the government's programme on June 19, could be delayed as the Tories seek an agreement with the DUP.

The PM looks to have withstood immediate internal pressure to resign and there was no discussion at the 1922 Committee of how long she would remain in post, although there were clear signals of how her style of rule would change to keep MPs on side. MPs agreed that they and their constituents did not want another General Election and were united in the aim of stopping Jeremy Corbyn from becoming prime minister.

The meeting came shortly after First Secretary of State Mr Green said that agreement with the DUP would have to be sealed before finalising the details of the Queen's Speech, setting out the government's legislative programme.

Mr Green said talks with the DUP were "going well".

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