Ex-minister Tobias Ellwood to submit letter of censure to Prime Minister | Boris Johnson
Senior Tory MP Tobias Ellwood has revealed he has to submit a letter of censure to Boris Johnson, as more Tories broke cover to criticize the Prime Minister after Sue Gray’s report on lockdown parties from Downing Street.
Ellwood, who is chairman of the Defense Committee and former Foreign Secretary, is the fifth MP to publicly declare his intention to submit a letter after Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross and backbench MPs Andrew Bridgen, Sir Roger Gale and Peter Aldous. . At least 54 letters would be needed to trigger a vote among Tory MPs on Johnson’s future.
Others who have called on Johnson to step down include former cabinet ministers Andrew Mitchell and David Davis, as well as committee chairs Caroline Nokes and William Wragg. MP elected in 2019, Elliot Colburn, also hinted he had submitted a letter telling his constituents his “patience had been shattered” and suggesting the Prime Minister should consider his position.
Former prime minister Theresa May, Aaron Bell of the 2019 admission and veteran backbencher Gary Streeter have also publicly criticized Johnson, while centrist Tory MP Tom Tugendhat has said he will run to replace him. in any leadership contest.
Speaking on Sky News, Ellwood said: ‘I think it’s time the Prime Minister got hold of it; he himself should ask for a vote of confidence rather than wait for the inevitable 54 letters to finally be submitted.
“It is time to resolve this problem completely so that the party can regain power, and, yes, I know that the next question you will ask – I will submit my letter today to the 1922 Committee.”
It would take at least 54 Tory MPs – or 15% of the party – to submit letters saying the Prime Minister had lost support in order to trigger a vote of confidence.
If that number of letters are received by Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the 1922 committee of backbenchers, Tory MPs would vote anonymously on whether the Prime Minister should remain in office. If Johnson were to lose, there would be a leadership contest and he would be barred from entering.
Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East and a former defense minister, said on Wednesday morning: ‘It’s just awful for all MPs to have to continually advocate this to the British public.
“The government recognized the need for a fundamental change, in the culture, in the composition, in the discipline, in the tone of No 10, but the strategy was, it seems, survival, announcements rushed policies like the navy taking charge of the Channel crossings by migrants. .
“And attacking Keir Starmer this week with Jimmy Savile… I mean, who advised the Prime Minister to say that? We are better than that, we must seek to improve our standards and rise above where we are today.
He added: ‘I don’t think the Prime Minister realizes how worried his colleagues are across all corners of the party, backbench MPs and ministers alike, that this is all only going one way and will invariably slide towards a very ugly place.”
Only Brady knows how many letters have been submitted to him and he is responsible for making any announcement that the threshold for a ballot has been reached.
A group of up to 20 Tory MPs from the 2019 admission were set to submit letters of censure to the Prime Minister two weeks ago. The incident became known as the ‘pork pie plot’ after the group met to discuss their options in the office of Alicia Kearns, the MP for Melton.
However, none of them have since confirmed that their letters actually reached Brady and some are said to have withdrawn them since the defection of their colleague Christian Wakeford to Labour.