Boris Johnson faces his toughest period as British Prime Minister, as Conservative peers weigh up putting their party leader up for a vote of confidence.
As media reports that 28 Conservative ministers have submitted letters of no-confidence in Johnson – the Party appears split on how it should handle the aftermath of Partygate scandals.
Monitoring developments, Smarkets Politics has stated that it is now more likely than not (62%) that Conservative MPs will trigger a vote of no-confidence in Boris Johnson this year.
“There is a prevailing sense among political journalists, and the betting markets, that Boris Johnson’s position as Conservative leader looked more secure after the damp squib Sue Gray report, with the chance of the Prime Minister leaving his post falling from 36% to 22% after its publication.” Commented Smarkets Political Analyst Patrick Flynn.
Should a vote of confidence proceed, Smarkets notes that the ‘result is on a knife-edge’, with a 53% chance that Johnson would lose it and be ousted as Conservative leader.
As Tory MPs asses whether Johnson is an electoral liability that has run out of public goodwill, – party focus has shifted to the by-elections campaigns of Wakefield and Tiverton & Honiton – as both constituencies are likely to be lost to Labour and Lib-Dems.
The drastic loss of confidence in Johnson leadership reaffirms the adage ‘that a week is a long time in politics’ – as Smarket punters previously believed that the PM had been unscathed by the Sue Gray report.
As stands, Smarkets reports that the likelihood of Johnson remaining Prime Minister to 2024 is now at its lowest point since the local elections in early May (41%).
Flynn added – “The trickle of public criticism of Johnson from Conservative MPs over the last week has now turned into a stream, and rumours are abound in Westminster that the threshold of 54 letters requesting a vote of no-confidence in the PM has been reached.”
“Momentum seems to be moving in one direction, and a confidence vote could turn wavering MPs against the Prime Minister. MPs, especially those in marginal constituencies, may fear that if they don’t get rid of Johnson this year, they may end up with an unpopular leader taking them into a general election, potentially putting their seats at risk.”