Everything You Need to Know About A Vote of No Confidence
Theresa May is preparing to face a leadership challenge after 48 MPs triggered a vote of no confidence. Earlier today, Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 Committee, revealed that the number of MPs needed to trigger a no-confidence vote had been reached. Mrs May has faced backlash over the Brexit plan she has negotiated.
After a bid for a vote of no confidence fell through in November, more Tory backbenchers have publicly confirmed they have submitted letters calling on May to step down, including Jacob Rees-Mogg and former Brexit minister Steve Baker.
Here’s everything you need to know about what a vote of no confidence could mean for the Prime Minister:
What is a vote of no confidence?
A no-confidence vote happens if the Prime Minister is deemed no longer fit to hold his or her role by her MPs.
For a no-confidence vote to be triggered, a total of 48 Tory MPs (15 per cent) must write to Sir Graham, chairman of the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee, the group of all backbench Tory MPs who meet weekly when the House of Commons is sitting.
It has an 18-member executive committee which oversees the election of party leaders.
In 2003, Iain Duncan Smith was ousted in a vote of no confidence from his Tory MP.
When will the vote be held?
The ballot is from 6-8pm on Wednesday evening, with the results announced shortly afterwards.
Sir Graham said: “The votes will be counted immediately afterwards and an announcement will be made as soon as possible in the evening.”
What happens if Theresa May loses?
First, Sir Graham would be required to set a date for the first round of leadership elections. Two Tory MPs must nominate candidates for the leadership.
Depending on the number of candidates, rounds of elections would be held and until there is only one contender is left standing.
If only one candidate comes forward, he or she becomes the leader.
How long would that take?
The timing will be down to Sir Graham, who would be tasked with overseeing the contest and setting appropriate timetables.
This process is anticipated to last around 12 weeks, although those MPs who submitted a vote of no confidence think it should be achieved far sooner.
Who could replace Theresa May?
Dominic Raab is one of the bookies' favourites to replace Theresa May should she lose a vote of no confidence. Bookies have tipped Dominic Raab, and Boris Johnson as favourites, Michael Gove and Sajid Javid are also said to be in the running.
Mr Javid appeared to set out his plan for a leadership bid in an interview with the Spectator, taking a swipe at Mrs May’s immigration policies.
He said: “Personally I think that it is far more important than someone saying: our immigration policy is about bringing numbers down, and nothing else.”