Boris on tenterhooks as THREE major headaches threaten to spark no-confidence deluge

Boris Johnson: ‘Patience running out’ says Kuenssberg

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The first issue facing Mr Johnson is the possibility of high-level Cabinet resignations. The resignation of a potential leadership challenger, such as Rishi Sunak or Liz Truss, could cause a deluge of no-confidence letters from Tory MPs. But this possibility seems unlikely, given that the Chancellor wrote a joint article with the Prime Minister in the Sunday Times this weekend and the Foreign Secretary is due in Russia for talks with the Kremlin over Ukraine.

But yesterday the Independent claimed Mr Sunak is putting the finishing touches on his leadership campaign after telling allies he believes Partygate could be “unsurvivable” for Boris Johnson.

Ms Truss has also thrown her weight behind the Prime Minister, telling reporters during her trip to Australia that Mr Johnson has her “100 percent support” and should “continue as long as possible in his job”.

The second major issue facing Johnson would be if Tory MPs decided to stage a coordinated effort to send letters of no-confidence to the 1922 Committee, or if the number of letters that have already been sent in is higher than expected.

A total of 54 no-confidence letters – representing 15 percent of Tory MPs – are required to be submitted to Graham Brady, the chair of the Committee, in order to trigger a no-confidence vote.

It is currently unknown how many of these letters have been sent in but earlier in January the Mirror reported 35 MPs have privately submitted such letters.

According to Politico, the final problem facing the Prime Minister would be “another strategically timed leak”.

The latest allegation to have emerged was that Mr Johnson held an ABBA themed “Winner Takes It All” party in his flat to celebrate after Dominic Cummings quit.

It has also been alleged that one Downing Street staffer boasted about breaching lockdown rules to police guarding No10 as they left the party, saying: “We’re the only ones allowed to party.”

However, Mr Johnson is reportedly trying to regain control of his party through a policy blitz, including the introduction of new Brexit legislation.

Sources said the Prime Minister was determined to deflect public outrage with a number of high-profile announcements and photo opportunities, something which he hopes will show his MPs he remains focused.

Today, Mr Johnson is set to tackle criticism from MPs that he has not sufficiently capitalised on Brexit by unveiling plans for legislation to make it easier to scrap EU regulations and protections.

He is also expected to visit Ukraine with the Foreign Secretary early this week.

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

Meanwhile, polling of the party membership has shown a crippling number of Tory supporters believing he should resign.

A Conservative Home poll of its panel of 1041 party members saw 53 percent of them saying Mr Johnson should quit.

The January 15 poll was conducted using the same group of party members that gave the Prime Minister a 93 point approval rating shortly after the general election.

Mr Sunak has been pegged as the favourite to succeed Mr Johnson as leader, should he resign.

A YouGov poll of 1,005 party members conducted on January 10 showed 33 percent of them backing Mr Sunak.

In second place was the Foreign Secretary, who had 25 percent of the group supporting her.

Senior civil servant Sue Gray is currently leading an inquiry into the “Partygate” allegations.

The Metropolitan Police have also launched their own investigation, with Commissioner Cressida Dick saying they were looking into “potential breaches of COVID-19 regulations” in Downing Street and Whitehall since 2020.

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