British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was fighting for political survival on Tuesday night after two senior ministers in his Conservative government unexpectedly resigned from cabinet posts in what appeared to be a coordinated move against their leader.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and Health Minister Sajid Javid have resigned over the latest scandal. Johnson’s judgment and integrity. They made their decision after Mr Johnson apologized for appointing Chris Pincher, who resigned last week amid allegations of misconduct, as minister.
The resignations put Mr Johnson in the most precarious position of his three-year tenure as prime minister after a series of crises prompted his fellow lawmakers to hold a no-confidence vote against him last month. Because he survived that vote, he cannot face another contest for a year unless party rules are changed. This means that cabinet resignations may be the only effective way to pressure him to resign.
Mr. Johnson’s fate may depend on whether other members of his cabinet stand by him. Although a number of high-ranking ministers are known to be loyal to the prime minister, some whose statements and actions will be closely watched had their doubts. More resignations signal the collapse of his government.
Whether or not the rest of the Cabinet remains committed, Mr. Johnson is fighting hard to regain his battered power. Before the resignations on Tuesday evening, Conservative MPs thought there could be a swift change to the party’s rule book that would allow a new no-confidence vote before the summer recess.
Mr Johnson also rejected calls to resign and, in an interview with the BBC on Tuesday, said he believed an apology would bring worried MPs to heel. Mr. Johnson admitted it was a “mistake” to refer to Mr. Johnson. Pincher gave the deputy chief whip his previous complaints about his behavior. “In hindsight, it was a mistake and I apologize to anyone who was badly affected by it,” he said. Johnson added.
But his critics believe they have heard similar assurances before.
“The public rightly expects the government to be properly, competently and rigorously run,” he said. Sunak said in a statement. “I understand this may be my last ministerial post, but I believe these standards are worth fighting for and that is why I am stepping down.”
Mr. Pincher resigned as deputy chief whip last week after admitting to being drunk at a private members’ club in London. Although he was expelled from the Conservative Party while the charges were being investigated, he did not resign as a deputy.
On Tuesday, Downing Street admitted that Mr. Johnson was informed of the previous charges against Mr. Johnson. Pincher in 2019 – something that Mr. Johnson’s office initially denied it.
Objections to the terms of appointment of Mr. The pinch – and Downing Street’s announcement – is the latest in a series of scandals involving Mr Johnson. Johnson. Earlier this year, he was fined by police for breaking his own pandemic lockdown rules at Downing Street, where his staff held a series of boozy parties.
Mr. Javid said in his resignation letter that “he can no longer honestly continue to serve in this government”.
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