Boris Johnson fails to deny he offered Carrie Symonds top job
Oliver Dowden quit his role as Tory Party chair because he “can’t go on defending the indefensible”, a senior Tory has suggested.
“That Oliver Dowden has resigned is…significant,” Sir Roger Gale, the North Thanet MP told Sky News earlier. “Oliver is an honourable and decent man and he’s obviously decided that he can’t go on defending the indefensible”.
The PM has insisted that he will “keep going” at No 10 despite the crushing double by-election losses.
Simon Lightwood won for Labour in Wakefield in West Yorkshire after gaining 13,166 votes to the Conservatives 8,231. Meanwhile, The Liberal Democrats’ Richard Foord won convincingly in Devon gaining 22,537 votes overturning a 24,000 Tory majority.
Boris Johnson must go, says ex-Tory leader Michael Howard as he urges cabinet to act
The Tory peer – who has remained quiet on the question of the leadership – also suggested that cabinet ministers should consider moving against the PM if he clings on at No 10.
Our politics correspondent Adam Forrest reports:
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 12:10
Johnson can’t just plough on as normal, ex-tractor porn MP says
The former Tory MP for Tiverton and Honiton Neil Parish, whose resignation after watching porn in the House of Commons triggered the by-election in the Devon seat, has said Boris Johnson must “face reality” after losing the vote and MPs must decide the Prime Minister’s fate.
He said residents of the former Tory stronghold had spoken “loudly” by helping the Liberal Democrats overturn a 24,000 Conservative majority, a result Mr Johnson must look at “very seriously”.
Mr Parish told Breakfast on BBC Radio Devon on Friday: “What is becoming increasingly necessary is for the party, the MPs to consider what is the long-term position of the Prime Minister.
“The public are concerned.
“The people in Tiverton and Honiton have spoken and they’ve spoken loudly”.
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 12:03
Why is Boris Johnson in Rwanda?
The prime minister is opting not to visit the centres where migrants who have been forcibly removed from the UK would be housed if the scheme gets off the ground.
The Prime Minister will meet with the Prince of Wales after Charles was reported as branding the relocation scheme ‘appalling’.
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 11:46
‘Things only get worse’
Speaking in Tiverton, Ed Davey said: “For years, Boris Johnson has told people things will get better. But under his leadership, things only get worse.
“So, let me tell the prime minister what the British people expect – they expect our country to be led. And he has shown no leadership, whatsoever.”
Mr Davey accused the PM of taking the British people for granted as inflation soars and working people struggle to fill up their cars.
He added: “Boris Johnson has deceived the British people and taken them for granted for far too long.”
Mr Davey said the Conservatives’ excuses for by-election losses to the Liberal Democrats were “starting to wear thin”.
“The spinners in Number 10 call this ‘expectation management’,” he said. “But I can tell Number 10 – the British people are sick of having their expectations managed.”
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 11:31
‘Show Boris the door’
Ed Davey has been speaking in Tiverton and Honiton where the party won last night’s byelection – and he has a new prop.
The Lib Dem leader appeared alongside a blue door with “it’s time to show Boris the door” written across it.
When the Lib Dems won the Cheshire and Amersham byelection last year, he posed with a hammer in front of a wall of blue bricks, claiming his party was ready to smash the Tories ‘blue wall’ of seats across southern England.
We’ll have the main takeaways from Davey’s speech shortly.
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 11:18
‘Industrial scale’ tactical voting sparks calls for Labour and Lib Dems to form electoral pact
Our politics correspondent Adam Forrest reports:
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 11:10
Resignation watch: Sunak vows to carry on and says ‘we all take responsibility’ for defeats
Close attention has been paid to Rishi Sunak – a close ally of Oliver Dowden – this morning to see if he might also resign following the byelection defeats.
The chancellor has within the past half an hour vowed to carry on, although there was no mention of Boris Johnson in his statement.
“I’m sad that my colleague and friend @OliverDowden took the decision to resign this morning.
“We all take responsibility for the results and I’m determined to continue working to tackle the cost of living, including delivering NICs changes saving 30 million people on average £330.”
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 11:00
Sturgeon – byelection results ‘monumental and humiliating’ for PM
Speaking from the Royal Highland Show on Friday, Scottish first minister Ms Sturgeon urged Tory MPs to remove Boris Johnson.
“It’s a monumental, massive, humiliating vote of no confidence in Boris Johnson,” she said.
“People could see it coming 100 miles off and it should send a very strong message – if not to Boris Johnson, who is impervious to all of these things given his arrogance, it should send a very strong message to the Conservatives.
“If they keep Boris Johnson, a law breaking prime minister who has been seen to not tell the truth, if they keep him in office, then effectively they are all becoming complicit in this.
“If this is not a wake-up call to the Conservative Party, then it will just prove beyond doubt that they don’t have the interests of any part of the UK in mind or at heart.”
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 10:34
Tories can’t win majority at next election under Johnson, polling expert says
The Tories can’t win a majority at the next general election under Boris Johnson, a polling expert has said in the wake of last night’s byelection defeats.
Peter Kellner, former president of YouGov, spoke to Sky News earlier.
Mr Kellner also claimed the two by-elections were a referendum on the prime minister’s leadership.
“I’ve been saying for some time that I don’t think the Conservatives can win under Boris Johnson,” he said.
“I was saying that based on polls. But when you do get real votes in two very different parts of the country…the Conservative gets hammered in both…I would have thought the Tories’ only chance is to change leader.”
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 10:10
It will be ‘difficult’ to hold my seat, Tory grandee concedes
Tory grandee Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown said there is “no doubt” it would be “difficult to hold” his seat if there were a by-election in his constituency now.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, the MP for the Cotswolds and treasurer of the 1922 committee said: “I think, factually, if I were to run under a bus today it would be difficult to hold my seat. There’s no doubt about that.
“I feel very sorry for all our volunteers, and indeed my colleagues, and indeed myself, who work very hard in these by-elections, but were simply defeated by the situation that we find ourselves in at the moment.”
Matt Mathers24 June 2022 09:55