Every Conservative MP’s position on Boris Johnson and the parties in Number 10
Speculation about Boris Johnson’s prospects are at fever pitch. Talks of votes of no confidence are being discussed at length in the press. Surprisingly, however, no one outside Downing Street seems to have looked comprehensively at what MPs are saying and doing. Given that is our biggest clue as to what they will do, that’s astonishing.
So I have. I attach a link below to a table with what each of the 359 MPs currently holding the Conservative whip has said or done in relation to the allegations of parties in Number 10 and their current view on Boris Johnson.
25/1/2022 — slightly updated version here.
26/1/2022 — further updated version here.
27/1/2022 — further updated version here.
2/2/2022 — post-Sue Gray update version here
3/2/2022 — further quite substantial updated version here.
5/2/2022 — further updated version here.
5/2/2022 — minor update here to allow for new MP for Southend West. (From now on, MPs will total to 360.)
6/2/2022 — further updated version here.
What does it tell us? Well, the first thing is that Boris Johnson has a lot more opponents than is appreciated. I have divided the MPs into six categories: hostile (those who have effectively declared their hand against the Prime Minister); icy (those who are going to find it hard credibly not to move against him); cool (those who have expressed above routine criticism of him); neutral; unknown; and friendly. You could argue about the categorisations and I have no doubt that individual MPs would, but I count them as follows:
Hostile 43 (previous count: 43) (first count: 41)
Icy 53 (previous count: 51) (first count: 51)
Cool 45 (previous count: 43) (first count: 32)
Neutral 63 (previous count: 59) (first count: 52)
Unknown 50 (previous count: 60) (first count: 101)
Friendly 106 (previous count: 104) (first count: 82)
(I’m not prepared to enter into discussions about my categorisations of MPs — if you disagree, adjust the totals to your own satisfaction, I’ve given my workings — but I would very much welcome additional information about what they have said, particularly those in the neutral and unknown categories. I will update the list from time to time.)
The Prime Minister’s team has a lot of work to do, and they can’t assume that all of those tabbed as friendly are in fact supportive. Many are obliged as part of the payroll vote to offer support to the Prime Minister.
My conclusion is that unless the report offers remarkable exoneration for the Prime Minister, a vote of no confidence looks pretty well certain. His prospects of success thereafter will depend on the efficiency of his operation. Efficiency is not a word generally associated with the Prime Minister’s operation.