‘Dead woman walking’ – May warned she will never lead Tories into election again
Former chancellor George Osborne said the Prime Minister could be ousted within days.
Theresa May has been warned by senior Conservatives that she will never lead the party into another general election after last week’s humiliation at the ballot box.
Former chancellor George Osborne said the Prime Minister was “dead woman walking” and could be ousted in a matter of days.
However, Graham Brady, the influential chairman of the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee, said there was no appetite for a leadership contest which could see the party having to fight another General Election.
Mr Osborne, who was sacked by Mrs May when she became Prime Minister and who now edits the London Evening Standard, said it was clear her days in Downing Street were numbered after seeing her Commons majority wiped out in the election.
“Theresa May is dead woman walking. It is just how long she is going to remain on death row,” he told BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show.
“I think we will know very shortly. We could easily get to the middle of next week and it all collapses for her.”
Former cabinet minister Nicky Morgan, who was also sacked by Mrs May, predicted that there could be a leadership challenge over the summer.
“I think it’s fairly clear Theresa May cannot lead us into another election – of course, we don’t know when that’s going to happen, and I don’t think we should rush that,” she told ITV’s Peston on Sunday.
“But I do think if we’re going to have a leadership contest in the Conservative Party, what we cannot do is have another coronation like last summer.”
Asked about the timing of such a contest, she said: “Much to the upset probably of every journalist who was hoping for a summer off, I suspect it could be over this summer and I think it should involve our party conference as well.”
Former business minister Anna Soubry said Mrs May’s position was “untenable” in the long term but cautioned against a rush to replace her.
“I just can’t see how she can continue in any long-term way. I think she will have to go unfortunately. But not for some time,” she told Sky News’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday.
“We need stability, we need to put that sense of the economy and our country and the nation’s interests absolutely at the forefront, none of this messing about behind the scenes.”