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The internal movement against Johnson represents a radical change of conservatives towards the prime minister.

Date: August 20, 2022 Time: 06:27:27

This Sunday, in just 12 hours, the mood in the camp of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson seemed to change dramatically. A few days earlier, his cabinet ministers had confidently predicted that there would be no proposals, even naming some of the prime minister’s staunchest critics whom they hoped to win over to their side.

Even on the Sunday morning shows, Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps, who was Johnson’s “man of numbers” and who kept elaborate spreadsheets to track support for his party campaign, said I didn’t expect the vote.

But later that night, Treasury Secretary Paul Scully all but admitted that it would happen. It took 54 letters of denunciation to provoke a vote, and the weight of the numbers was against the prime minister. A total of 50 Conservative MPs publicly criticized Johnson’s stance without explicitly stating that he should remain in office under the circumstances.

Another 36 have not made public statements since Sue Gray’s report on the Patigate scandal, but have previously invited their constituents to make a decision based on her findings.

Graham Brady, head of the 1922 Committee, which includes non-Ministerial Conservative MPs, is not the type to call firefighters at the first sign of smoke. When he watched the internal vote against Theresa May, he said that the card’s threshold for activating it was due to “traffic in both directions”: people were laying out cards and also taking them down.

But Brady called May—and, presumably, Johnson too—when he felt that the threshold had clearly been crossed, despite the fact that some cards had been withdrawn.

rapidly falling

Even if Johnson wins the confidence of lawmakers on Monday night, as he hopes, the spin will be extraordinary. Just three and a half years ago, the Conservatives won the last vote of confidence in their leader. Johnson has since won the Tory leadership with overwhelming support from Conservative MPs and party members.

A landslide electoral victory followed: an 80-seat majority after a period of highly unpredictable coalitions and a paltry majority. He took the United Kingdom out of the European Union, the culmination of a project that was the feverish desire of many of his supporters.

Yet perhaps only this prime minister could have squandered it all so quickly: “the party” encapsulated the sense of “the norm for them” that had been a constant aura throughout Johnson’s political career. He was arrogant with the truth. He hesitated in making difficult decisions. His work at Downing Street was chaotic. His execution of key promises was poor.

Now her critics range from the more predictable former ousted ministers to the stalwart Brexiters who spurred her predecessor’s resignation; from the “red walls” 2019 [en referencia a los tradicionales votantes laboristas que votaron por Johnson en 2019]even the presidents of the commissions and the skeptics of the conclusion due to COVID-19.

pre-election ballast

The prime minister’s chances of convincing a majority of Conservative MPs to keep him remain high. His best chance is to switch to campaign mode, where he feels most comfortable, and convince the MPs that he is the winner. But the rebels are becoming more organized. An informative document was circulated to MPs this Sunday evening, revealing the reasons why Johnson is now an electoral ballast.

The harshest line is that Johnson’s booing during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations “tells us nothing the data doesn’t tell us” and that none of the social groups polled say they trust the prime minister.

Another paragraph states that “the whole purpose of the government now seems to be to keep Boris Johnson as prime minister”, pointing to his negative personal assessments and saying that “protecting the unprotected” is not protecting the party, but the individual. .

This question will worry the majority of Conservative MPs tonight when they vote.

Translation by Lara Lem


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