johnson: British PM Boris Johnson wins no-confidence vote but faces huge Tory rebellion

LONDON: Prevent from triggering a leadership contest, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday won a vote of confidence in his leadership, in the face of efforts by party insurgents to oust him.
As many as 211 (59%) Conservative MPs voted for Johnson, while 148 (41%) voted against him as leader of the party. All 359 Conservative MPs voted by secret ballot, which took place in Westminster at 6pm local time on Monday. Sir Graham Brady, head of the 1922 committee representing Conservative supporters, read the results at 9pm local time.
“The party of parliament really believes in Boris Johnson,” he said to loud cheers and pounding tables.
At least 180 MPs need to vote that they don’t trust Johnson for him to be forced out of the election. But the Tory rebels were short of 32 MPs to oust the Prime Minister. However, the size of the vote against his leadership was higher than expected, reflecting deep discontent among a significant segment of Conservative MPs.
Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen told TOI: “The Cabinet must now tell Mr Johnson that the game is over.”
Johnson’s result was worse than that of former Prime Minister Theresa May, who won a vote of confidence in her leadership position in December 2018, 200 votes (63%) to 117 (37%). She was ousted within six months.
Johnson was opposed by the same percentage of her MPs as Margaret Thatcher in 1990 when she won 204 votes (55%) to Michael Heseltine’s 152 (41%). She announced her resignation two days later.
But Johnson appeared undeterred by the scale of the uprising, hailing the result as “a convincing, decisive, good and conclusive outcome” that would allow him to draw lines in the scandal. Downing Street and continuing the government agenda.
“It means that as a government we can go ahead and focus on the things that really matter to people,” he said, focusing on partygate branding as a “ media obsession”.
Now, he added, the government can focus on helping people with the cost of living, solving the Covid backlog, making the streets safer and continuing to unite, upgrade and strengthen fixed economy.
“I think it is a good result. When I first became leader of the Conservative Party in 2019, I did not receive anything like this support in the past. Parliament“, he said, referring to his 2019 leadership election victory, when he won 160 votes – 51% – from 312 Tory MPs.
“We will beat. We have a very big agenda and we will get it done. What matters is what we offer and what we do and as a result of this party decision we have a conclusion for something that has lasted so long,” he said.
The BBC news channel, however, quoted the Conservative MP Roger Gale like saying it’s very harmful to the Prime Minister’s reputation. “I did not expect that more than a third of the party members of the parliament expressed distrust of the Prime Minister. That severely damaged the Prime Minister and his reputation. I’d be surprised if he’s still at number 10 by the end of fall. I think the Prime Minister has to go back to Downing Street and consider very carefully where he is going from here.”
The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom sent a letter to every Tory MP on Monday seeking their support. He gave a speech to the 1922 committee two hours before the vote, in which he said that if they “fall into a pointless fraternal debate about the future of our party,” they will hand over the keys. key number 10 for Labor. According to several MPs who attended the private meeting, he also said he “will do it again” in regards to attending staff farewell events during the lockdown.
Under current rules, he cannot face another leadership challenge for 12 months. But question marks remain about the future of his position as prime minister. Parliamentary Privileges Committee reports on whether he cheated Downing Street parties during the expected lockdown in the fall and the Tories could face catastrophic defeat in by-elections in Wakefield and Tiverton and Honiton on 23 June.
But the Cabinet ministers of Indian origin Rishi SunakSuella Braverman and Alok Sharma announced before the vote that they trusted Johnson.
Sunak tweeted: “From the deployment of the vaccine to our response to Russian aggression, the Prime Minister has shown the strong leadership our country needs. I support him today. today and will continue to support him as we focus on growing the economy, tackling the cost of living and tackling the Covid backlog.”
Following the vote, opposition leader Sir Keir Starmer said the Conservatives now believe the British public has no right to expect honest politicians.
Shadow foreign secretary David Lammy told the BBC: “Boris Johnson is currently injured and indeed the Conservatives should get rid of him. We need someone in office that the British people can trust. He’s seriously injured, he’s limping, but he’s desperately injured. ”

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