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Sunday, October 2, 2022

Boris Johnson Narrowly Survives Confidence Vote

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Boris Johnson has narrowly survived a vote of confidence among Tory MPs – but suffered a rebellion bigger than Theresa May.

Some 211 MPs voted for the prime minister, compared to 148 votes against – a majority of 63.

He needed a simple majority – 180 votes or more – to continue in office. The result means 59% of Conservative MPs backed Mr Johnson, with 41% voting against him.

The prime minister is now immune from another leadership challenge for 12 months, under current Conservative Party rules – but the result will severely undermine his leadership.

Former PM Theresa May won a confidence vote in December 2018, where she secured the support of 200 MPs to 117 – a majority of 83, that represented the backing of 63% of her parliamentary party.

But five months later she announced her resignation, after repeatedly failing to pass her Brexit deal in the Commons.

Mr Johnson said the “convincing” and “decisive” result on Monday evening means the government can “move on”.

He said he was “certainly not interested in snap elections” in order to gain a new mandate from the public.

“What this means tonight is that we can focus on what we’re doing to help people on the cost of living, with what we are doing to keep streets and communities safer,” he said.

“It gives us the chance to unite, strengthen and level up our economy,” Mr Johnson added.

“What we are going to do now is take the opportunity to unite and deliver.

“What we want to do is get on and use this moment – which I think is decisive and conclusive – and continue with our programme.”

Asked how it compared to previous confidence votes in Conservative prime ministers, he added: “I have got a far bigger mandate from my own parliamentary colleagues than I had in 2019.”

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