Tory MP Wants Boris Johnson To Face Emergency 'Confidence' Vote

Sir Alan Duncan requested a Commons debate that would have tested whether the next PM has a majority.
Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson
PA Wire/PA Images

A Tory MP who quit as foreign minister instead of serving in a Boris Johnson government has called for an emergency vote to test the likely winner’s majority in parliament.

Sir Alan Duncan, who resigned as foreign office minister on Monday, immediately asked speaker John Bercow to call a debate.

The emergency debate would have asked MPs to consider whether the Commons “supports the [next PM’s] wish to form a government”.

The move could have squashed Johnson’s premiership before it began as it would have effectively acted as a confidence vote and have taken place before the next PM requested the Queen’s formal backing to take charge.

It is understood Bercow has refused the request.

It comes ahead of Johnson’s widely anticipated victory in the Tory leadership race over rival Jeremy Hunt on Tuesday.

Duncan told the BBC he quit government to push for the debate, which could have triggered a crisis for the UK’s next premier before he reached Number 10.

Duncan is likely to be the first of many ministers to quit the rather than serve under Johnson’s leadership or be fired.

Chancellor Philip Hammond and Justice Secretary David Gauke have both confirmed they will step down before Johnson becomes prime minister on Wednesday afternoon.

In his resignation letter, Duncan said: “It is tragic that just when we could have been the dominant intellectual and political force throughout Europe, and beyond, we have had to spend every day working beneath the dark cloud of Brexit.”

Duncan, a university friend of May, praised the “faultless dignity and an unstinting sense of duty” she had shown.

Sir Alan Duncan
Sir Alan Duncan
PA Ready News UK

“I am only sorry that your three years as prime minister have been brought to an end,” he said.

Theresa May will take her final PMQs in the Commons on Wednesday before heading to Buckingham Palace resign as prime minister.

The Queen will then meet the new leader of the Tory Party at the Palace and invite him to form a new government.

Traditionally, the new prime minister makes a statement in Downing Street before stepping into No.10 for the first time.

Johnson will likely spend his first full day in office finalising his government - with appointments to the cabinet and ministerial team expected.


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