British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will face a confidence vote by lawmakers in the governing Conservative Party later on Monday, the chairman of the 1922 Committee Graham Brady has told lawmakers.
“The threshold of 15 percent of the parliamentary party seeking a vote of confidence in the leader of the Conservative Party has been exceeded,” he wrote in a note to Conservative lawmakers.
“In accordance with the rules, a ballot will be held between 1800 and 2000 today Monday 6th June — details to be confirmed. The votes will be counted immediately afterwards. An announcement will be made at a time to be advised.”
“Tonight is a chance to end months of speculation and allow the government to draw a line and move on,” a spokesperson for Johnson said in a statement.
“The PM welcomes the opportunity to make his case to MPs [members of parliament] and will remind them that when they’re united and focused on the issues that matter to voters there is no more formidable political force.”
This comes after speculation on the matter by several high-level officials in the UK.
British health minister Sajid Javid said earlier on Monday it was possible that Johnson would face a vote of confidence triggered by disgruntled lawmakers from within his Conservative Party.
“I do think it’s possible, but I don’t know,” Javid told Sky News television. He said the country did not need a challenge to the prime minister.
Rebels in his party are expecting an announcement on Monday morning, ITV’s UK editor said.
“Tory rebels expect Sir Graham Brady to make a statement this morning announcing that there will be a vote of no confidence in Boris Johnson,” Paul Brand said on Twitter.
“Only Brady knows the exact details, but this is as certain as anyone has sounded that a vote is on.”
Should Johnson lose a confidence vote, he would be removed as prime minister and there would be a leadership contest to decide his replacement.
British Conservative Party lawmaker Jesse Norman, who was previously loyal to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, said on Monday he was joining calls for a confidence vote in Johnson’s leadership.
“I have always been deeply committed to public service,” Norman, a former junior finance minister, said in a letter to Johnson that he published on Twitter.
“But recent events have served to clarify the position this country is in under your leadership, beyond any doubt; and I am afraid I can see no circumstances in which I could serve in a government led by you.”
At least 54 Conservative members of parliament are required to formally request a confidence vote to Brady, the chairman of the party’s 1922 Committee, for one to be triggered.
The letters are confidential, so only the chairman of the committee knows how many have actually been submitted.