Boris Johnson will be subject Monday evening June 6 to a motion of no confidence from his party. If disavowed, the prime minister, at the heart of ‘partygate’, a scandal over parties held at 10 Downing Street during a time of health restrictions, will lose his post.
“The threshold of 15% of parliamentarians requesting a vote of confidence from the leader of the Conservative Party has been exceeded,” said Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 committee responsible for internal organization matters, in a press release.
The vote will take place between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. local time (7 p.m. and 9 p.m. in Paris) barely twenty-four hours after the end of the jubilee for the 70-year reign of Queen Elizabeth II. “The votes will be counted immediately afterwards. An announcement will be made at a time to be communicated at a later date,” added Graham Brady.
Boris Johnson’s spokesman reacted in a statement, saying the vote “offers an opportunity to end months of speculation and allow the Government to draw a line and move on by addressing the priorities of the population “.
“The Prime Minister welcomes the opportunity to present his case to MPs and will remind them that there is no more formidable political force than when they are united and focused on the issues that matter to voters.” . »
A damning report
For months, criticism against Boris Johnson has been growing in his camp under the effect of Sue Gray’s report on “partygate”. With this report, this senior official is immersed in the parties organized in Downing Street during the confinements, synonymous with heavy sacrifices for the British. She details a series of very alcoholic pots with altercations, music, leaving through backdoors in the early morning and disrespect for security or maintenance agents. Boris Johnson, himself subject to a fine – unheard of for a sitting prime minister – said he took “full responsibility for everything that happened” but felt he had to “continue” his work.
The scandal shattered Boris Johnson’s long-stifled popularity, leading to heavy setbacks for the Tories in a local election in early May. He maintained himself by highlighting in particular his leading role in the Western response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
No obvious successor stands out
If he is defeated by a motion of no confidence, an internal election will be held within the party to appoint a new leader. If he survives there, he cannot be dislodged for a year. He would not be out of business since a parliamentary inquiry must now determine, by the fall, whether he lied to Parliament, which could lead him to resign.
Long considered an election-winning machine, Brexit champion Boris Johnson looks more and more like a foil after partygate but also in the context of a historic fall in the purchasing power of the British.
A recent survey by the YouGov institute suggests that in the event of the current legislative elections, the Conservatives, in power for twelve years, would lose almost all of the constituencies in the popular regions seized from Labor in 2019, even that of Boris Johnson in the suburbs of London. On the other hand, no obvious successor stands out, enough to encourage some elected officials to temporize before embarking on an internal election.