Yesterday at 9 p.m. was a tense moment in the House of Commons, as the result of a confidence vote on Boris Johnson was announced.
The Prime Minister survived the confidence vote, with 211 to 148 of Tory MPs in support of Johnson’s leadership of the Conservative party. He will remain as PM and is immune to another vote of confidence from his party for another year.
Despite Johnson’s success, many believe this result is damaging to his premiership, and that he may not survive in the post for much longer.
Writing in The Times, former leader of the Conservatives, Lord Hague, called Johnson’s leadership “unsustainable” and urged him to seek an “honourable exit”.
Speaking to the BBC News Channel, Sir Roger Gale was uncertain whether Johnson would remain as PM past the autumn, as he restated his opposition to his party leader.
Many other Tory MPs are sceptical about whether Boris can maintain his leadership for long, and point to the last time the Conservatives held a vote of confidence for Theresa May, Johnson’s predecessor. Mrs May achieved a higher level of support among her MPs than Johnson did, but she was out of the job six months later.
Nevertheless, Boris Johnson is pressing on, and is hoping to “draw a line under issues our opponents want to talk about”. Members of the cabinet have called for the party to “move on” from issues such as Partygate.
In a statement after the vote, the leader of the Labour party, Sir Keir Starmer said: “The Conservative Party had a decision to make, to show some backbone, or to back Boris Johnson.
“Conservative MPs made their choice tonight, they have ignored the British public.”
Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s First Minister, tweeted: “That result is surely the worst of all worlds for the Tories,” continuing with “only 2 of [Scotland’s] 59 MPs have confidence in the PM.”
With two upcoming by-elections on June 23, the PM has some tough upcoming tests. If the public vote swings away from the Conservatives, it may open fresh wounds to Johnson’s authority, and more may begin to consider his leadership of the Conservative party.
Only time will tell how long Boris Johnson will remain as Prime Minister.
Featured Image Credit: bbc.co.uk