ITV journalist Robert Peston, writing on Facebook, has claimed that there is an operation currently in progress by Tory Brexiteers to encourage more backbenchers to write letters to the chair of the 1922 Committee.
There is an operation in progress by Tory Brexiters to persuade fellow backbenchers to write to Graham Brady, chair of the 1922 backbench committee, calling for a vote of no confidence in Theresa May as leader of their party.
This is what one of them told me:
“I’m campaigning myself. We need 60-70 letters, not 48...I know people who are putting letters in today. I think we are the closest ever to her going and I think, thank God, this could be it.”
The reference to 48 letters is the threshold for triggering the vote. But this MP wants a comfortable margin above that, so that the PM can see that a sizeable number of her colleagues want her to go.
This is not an exquisitely centralized and coordinated campaign against her. It is an emotional outpouring, largely by Brexiters, that May’s version of Brexit betrays what they see as the most important prize of leaving the EU, namely “taking back control.”
Referencing the idea of David Davis being an interim PM, he explained how Davis has become “Brexit marmite,” and that many Tory “centrist” MPs have said that they wouldn’t vote for him. But that begs the question…who would they vote for?
Would the majority of the Tories who are “centrist” and even Remain actually vote for another Remainer as leader? Would they be that masochistic, or even suicidal?
Revolt is definitely in the air, though – and Peston isn’t the only one to say it. Over the weekend, unnamed Conservatives told the Sunday papers that “assassination is in the air” and Theresa May is entering “the killing zone.” A former Tory minister even said:
“The moment is coming when the knife gets heated, stuck in her front and twisted. She’ll be dead soon.”
The graphic language has, of course, been denounced by some. The tragic murder of Jo Cox has been dragged into it, with Sarah Wollaston, the chair of the Health and Social Care Committee, stating:
“Totally unacceptable. Have they learned nothing following the assassination of Jo Cox?”
I mean, come on. Things are getting heated, but I don’t think Mrs. May is under any physical threat from her Tory colleagues. They want her out, but they don’t literally want her dead. But of course, there’s now a campaign to unveil the MPs who used the language, and everyone is getting on board the Offended Express.
Yvette Cooper MP of the Labour Party has even gotten on board, slamming the “vile and dehumanizing language.” Which is funny…I don’t remember Cooper speaking up when Ken Clarke called UKIP voters “racists” and “clowns,” or any other time working class people have been smeared by the Westminster elite.
This is just a clever and convenient way to distract the media and scare MPs who might want to send a letter to the 1922 Committee. I can see right through this.
One thing that’s for certain, however, is that the operation to oust her is quite evidently underway.
Cooper is getting involved with this campaign against Tory Brexiteers who said hurty words about Mrs. May simply because she’s fearful of the Brexit revolt that’s coming within the Tory Party. And, this language wouldn’t be used if Parliamentarians weren’t passionate, and didn’t believe her when she says a deal is right around the corner.