Weakened Boris vows to fight on despite a flood of resignations

Beleaguered Following a wave of resignations that left him clinging to power, Boris Johnson has promised to continue serving as UK prime minister.

The first resignations occurred on Tuesday night, minutes apart after the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and the Minister of Health Sajid Javid issued statements claiming they couldn’t continue to back Johnson.

By mid-afternoon on Wednesday, there had been at least 26 resignations, including those of two cabinet ministers, 13 ministers, 9 principal private secretaries, two trade envoys, and the vice-chair of the Conservative Party. On Tuesday, a number of other less prominent MPs also tendered their resignations.

Five of the most recent ministers to resign didn’t even bother to compose individual letters; instead, they just contributed their signatures to a collective letter to Johnson.

What transpired at PMQs?

The duty of a prime minister in trying times, when you’ve been given a massive mandate, is to keep going, Boris Johnson told MPs during Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday afternoon.

Johnson claimed on Wednesday that after learning of Pincher’s accusations, he moved quickly.

The leader of the opposition, Keir Starmer, criticised his reaction as pitiful and referred to the Conservatives who remained in office despite previous scandals as “the charge of the lightweight brigade.” The current government was also described by him as a “Z-list cast of nodding dogs.”

Later, former health minister Javid went into greater depth about his reasons for leaving.

Javid told the Commons, “Mr. Speaker, walking the fine line between loyalty and honesty has become impossible in recent months, and I will never risk sacrificing my integrity.”

“I also think that a captain is only as good as his or her team, and that a team is only as good as its captain. Thus, loyalty must be reciprocal. Being a part of that team has grown more challenging as a result of recent events.

We have cause to doubt the veracity and integrity of what we’ve all been told, Javid said, and at some point, we have to decide that enough is enough. He singled out a number of incidents, including lockdown parties and sexual misconduct accusations against a senior Conservative politician. That time, in my opinion, has come.

What’s the history of the most recent crisis?

What, therefore, has precipitated Johnson’s government’s most recent political crisis in the UK, which seems to have lurched from one controversy to another in the previous six months?

The central problem is how Downing Street handled the resignation of Chris Pincher, an MP who admitted to getting wasted and touching two men in an exclusive London bar.

Although Johnson was aware of the charges of misbehavior against him, he yet selected him as the deputy chief whip earlier this year.

Some MPs expressed frustration that 10 Downing Street couldn’t clarify what Boris Johnson knew and when, and that they were undercut by the PM’s position changing after doing media appearances to support it.

RELATED

Johnson had knowledge of historical complaints against Chris Pincher when Johnson was the British foreign minister and Pincher was a minister in the same department, according to a startling letter from the former head of Britain’s diplomatic service that made it abundantly clear that he knew much more than he had previously admitted.

Before Javid and Sunak’s resignations were made public, Johnson claimed Pincher ought to have been dismissed from the ministry for an earlier 2019 incident.

When asked if appointing Pincher to the government was a mistake, Johnson responded, “I think it was a mistake and I apologise for it. In retrospect, that was the incorrect move.

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