Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservative Party casts ballots in no-confidence vote
- Author: Wendy Palmer Dec 12, 2018,
Dec 12, 2018, 23:57
The victor of the vote becomes Conservative leader and prime minister, without the need for a national election.
Theresa May addressed Conservative MPs shortly before they began casting their ballots in a vote of confidence in her as their party leader.
She could be toppled if a simple majority of 317 Conservative MPs vote against her, though a large rebellion could also leave her fatally weakened.
"She's not the person to see Brexit through", he said. One trenchant critic, the North East Derbyshire MP, Lee Rowley, told her: "Stamina is not a strategy".
He was confident voters would choose to remain, but on June 23, 2016, they voted by 52 per cent to 48 per cent to leave.
The leadership crisis was triggered after May took the dramatic decision on Monday to postpone a crunch vote in Parliament on whether to approve or reject the Brexit deal she has struck with the European Union. The field was narrowed to May and then-junior minister Andrea Leadsom, but she pulled out before members voted, leaving May to become leader unopposed.
May said she would seek "assurances" from the European Union and bring the deal back to Parliament.
Jacob Rees-Mogg, the chair of the European Research Group of Brexiter backbenchers, who has been calling for May to face a vote of no confidence for several weeks, claimed she had "hedged her bets".
Solicitor-General Robert Buckland said May told lawmakers at a meeting that "it is not her intention to lead the party in the 2022 general election". "But the word "intention" is a classic politician's word, because intentions can change".
With less than four months left until the United Kingdom is due to exit on March 29, Brexit has been thrown up in the air by the failure of May's divorce deal among British lawmakers and a mutiny inside her party.
However a significant mutiny could make her leadership untenable.
The no-confidence ballot will be held tonight between 6pm and 8pm.
May said the date for a new vote depended on fresh talks with European Union leaders, set to begin Tuesday in meetings with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte in The Hague and then German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. Foster later said: "We emphasised that tinkering around the edges would not work".
Not much. Britain is seeking "reassurances" that the backstop will be temporary. "We wanted fundamental legal text changes".
Speaking in Brussels, May said there was "a shared determination" to tackle British lawmakers' concerns over the Irish backstop and that UK-EU discussions would continue ahead of a meeting of EU leaders on Thursday.
"Her opening remarks were 'I am not going to hold a snap election, '" Shelbrooke said.
Leadsom said she backed May in the confidence vote.
The leadership challenge eats into the time available to get a Brexit deal through Parliament before exit day on March 29.
Leadsom, another pro-Brexit campaigner who still serves in May's cabinet, made it to the last two in the 2016 contest to replace Cameron. "We were promised strong and stable".
Juncker, who is set to meet British Prime Minister Theresa May on Tuesday evening, underlined that "the deal we have achieved is the best deal possible". She said she has listened to them and that it is now time to get on with delivering Brexit.
Why do members of the prime minister's own party want to sack her? .
Prospective leadership contenders are former foreign secretary Boris Johnson, former Brexit secretary Dominic Raab, home secretary Sajid Javid, and global development secretary Penny Mordaunt. Both men were viewed by some colleagues as potential leadership contenders if May had been forced out.