Boris Johnson not wanted due to 'Brexit hostility' says Rees-Mogg
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson could be forced to step down from office by the end of Monday if he loses a vote of confidence in his leadership. At least 54 Conservative Party MPs have sent letters of no confidence to Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the 1992 Committee, asking for the vote to take place.
What time is the vote of confidence?
The vote will take place between 6pm and 8pm tonight, and the results will be announced at 9pm.
Mr Johnson will be forced to resign as party leader – and thus as Prime Minister – if a majority (at least 180) of Tory MPs cast their ballots against him.
Downing Street has said Mr Johnson “welcomes the opportunity to make his case to MPs”, and tonight’s vote is “a chance to end months of speculation and allow the Government to draw a line and move on”.
Voting will be conducted in secret and is likely to be done in a large committee room, in the Palace of Westminster.
The majority of Mr Johnson’s cabinet have voiced their support for the PM, including Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and Chancellor Rishi Sunak.
Ms Truss tweeted: “The Prime Minister has my 100 percent backing in today’s vote and I strongly encourage colleagues to support him.
“He has delivered on Covid recovery and supporting Ukraine in the face of Russian aggression.
“He has apologised for mistakes made. We must now focus on economic growth.”
But Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has urged Tory MPs to “show some leadership” and vote against Mr Johnson in tonight’s ballot.
Several betting agents are backing Mr Johnson to survive the vote of confidence.
For example, Paddy Power has backed the PM at odds of 1/4 to win the vote, while William Hill has also awarded him the same chances of success.
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If Mr Johnson were to lose the vote, it would result in a Tory leadership contest.
Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt has emerged as the favourite to win such a poll if it took place.
He has urged his fellow Tory MPs to oust Mr Johnson from power, adding Conservatives know “in our hearts we are not giving the British people the leadership they deserve”.
Mr Hunt tweeted: “We are not offering the integrity, competence and vision necessary to unleash the enormous potential of our country.
“And because we are no longer trusted by the electorate, who know this too, we are set to lose the next general election.
“Anyone who believes our country is stronger, fairer & more prosperous when led by Conservatives should reflect that the consequence of not changing will be to hand the country to others who do not share those values.
“Today’s decision is change or lose. I will be voting for change”
The vote of confidence in Mr Johnson’s leadership has come about after new developments in the Partygate scandal.
Last month saw the publication of Sue Gray’s report into Government lockdown parties, which confirmed the PM’s attendance at eight of the 12 gatherings she investigated.
Though Mr Johnson was only fined for attending his June 2020 birthday gathering, it has not stopped renewed calls for him to step down without delay.
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