Lord Frost urges Conservative MPs to consider ousting Rishi Sunak | Politics | News

December 8, 2023
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Lord Frost has suggested the Conservative Party should be open to changing leader yet again if heading for a defeat at the General Election.

The former Brexit negotiator claimed many Tories no longer care about winning the election, and the party has largely resigned itself to defeat.

Lord Frost warned “anything” that can be done “to get us on a better path and increase our chances of winning” must be done – including a potential change of leader.

He said the first port of call must be “improving this Rwanda Bill so it does the job it is meant to do”.

Writing in his Telegraph column, he said: “But MPs also have a responsibility to consider more broadly whether they think the current path can take us to an election win.

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“If they don’t they shouldn’t be resigning themselves to it – they should be doing something about it.”

Amid rumours of more letters of no confidence being submitted to the 1922 Committee chairman Sir Graham Brady, the party’s chairman Richard Holden was yesterday forced to warn another leadership contest would be “insanity”.

Asked at a press lunch if he ruled out a pre-election leadership contest, Mr Holden replied: “It would be insanity to do that.”

However, No. 10 is reportedly “worried” about the number of no-confidence letters being submitted to Sir Graham, with the Mirror claiming at least 18 of the 53 required to trigger a confidence vote have been sent.

Following Robert Jenrick’s resignation, Tory MP Dame Andrea Jenkyns said his departure may mark the “death knell” for Mr Sunak’s leadership.

There is still speculation next Tuesday’s crunch vote on the new Rwanda Bill could be set up as a confidence motion in the Government, which could lead to a leadership contest or a General Election if Tory rebels defeat Mr Sunak.

While the PM told reporters at his emergency press conference yesterday that he didn’t plan on the vote being one of confidence, a Tory deputy chairman appeared to suggest such a move could still be on the cards.

Rachel Maclean, the party’s chairman for women, told GB News the vote will be “an issue of confidence”.

She said: “Of course, it’s about confidence in the Government and what it delivers and the British people will be looking at this and thinking we like to do to deal with this.

“When the Prime Minister came into office, he set out his priorities and he said he would stabilise the economy. He said he would deliver tax cuts. He said he would get inflation down.”

Regardless of the speculation around Mr Sunak’s future, Lord Frost claims many Tory MPs have simply “given up” on the party’s chances at the election.

He said: “This election is of historic significance. And it is why I am very worried that too many Conservative parliamentarians seem to have given up on it.

“The centre-Left, with whom we must group the Prime Minister after last month’s reshuffle, seems to be happy with losing decently, to the approving applause of the establishment.

“But I also hear people on the Right saying that the election is already lost and that the important thing is that the Left “owns the result” so the Right can take control of the smoking wreckage after the crash.”



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