Thursday, 26 May 2022

‘No leadership race!’ Liz Truss throws weight behind under pressure Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson appears to be reassured by Liz Truss after PMQs

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The Foreign Secretary was asked whether or not the Prime Minister’s leadership remained tenable in light of the recent revelations about parties held at Downing Street during lockdown. In response, Ms Truss denied that a leadership election will be taking place, saying she has “100 percent support” for the Prime Minister as he is doing an “excellent job”. She added that the PM should “continue as long as possible in his job”.

The Foreign Secretary was speaking from Australia, where the UK is holding talks on deepening security, defence and technological links with the country.

She was joined by Defence Secretary Ben Wallace for the annual “Aukmin” talks with Australia’s defence and foreign ministers.

She said: “The prime minister has my 100 percent support.

“He is doing an excellent job.

“I want the prime minister to continue as long as possible in his job.

“He is doing a fantastic job.”

She added: “There’s no leadership election.

“The Prime Minister apologised and said mistakes were made.

“He is working to open up the economy and deliver for people across Britain and that is what is important … and that is what people are focused on.”

Ms Truss was also asked about allegations of blackmail by Tory whips, who have been accused of intimidating rebel backbench MPs.

In response, she said: “I’ve already commented on the situation in the United Kingdom and I do not have any information about what is happening on the subject you raise.”

Her comments come as Mr Johnson faces increasing calls to resign from across the political spectrum.

Numerous prominent figures in the Tory party have called for the Prime Minister’s resignation, including former Brexit Minister David Davis and Scottish Conservative Leader Douglas Ross.

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According to the Mirror, 35 MPs have privately submitted letters of no confidence to the Tory 1922 Committee.

54 MPs are required to send these letters in order to trigger a vote on the issue.

And last week, ConservativeHome reported that 53 percent of its panel of 1041 party members believed Johnson should quit.

Ms Truss has been pegged as a hopeful for the top job, should Johnson resign.

In December, Ms Truss was leading in the polls, sitting 20 points ahead of Rishi Sunak on a ConservativeHome poll asking its panel of members who would make the best leader.

But in the most recent polling, Mr Sunak is viewed most positively.

45 percent of people on the same panel said the Chancellor would make a good PM with 32 percent against.

Ms Truss, however, was shown to have the support of just 22 percent, with 38 percent against.

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