Another of London’s 21 Conservative MPs has publicly called for Boris Johnson to step down as leader of his party and Prime Minister, bringing the total in the capital to four.
Elliot Colburn, who gained the Carshalton & Wallington seat in Sutton from the Liberal Democrats in 2019, has emailed his constituents to explain that he submitted a letter of no confidence to the Tory backbench 1922 committee in February and to inform them that neither the report by Sue Gray nor the Metropolitan Police investigation into the so-called “partygate” Covid lockdown breaches at 10 downing Street had persuaded him to withdraw the letter.
Sky News reports that that Colburn’s email said “I am especially appalled at the revelations of the poor treatment of security and cleaning staff at No 10”.
Colburn’s decision to reveal his wish for Johnson to go and that he has submitted a letter to that effect follows the same move by fellow London MPs David Simmonds, Stephen Hammond and Bob Neill.
Not all of the other 17 London Tory MPs, who include Johnson himself (Uxbridge & South Ruislip), can be assumed to wish he continues, with On London unable to find examples of any of the other 16 speaking up for him through media channels in recent days, and gratitude to him confined to Orpington MP Gareth Bacon last week welcoming Johnson’s visit to a local primary school attended by two refugee Ukrainian children.
In February, Bob Blackman, who represents the marginal Harrow East, said that many of his constituents had sacrificed a great deal during the pandemic and stated that “those who set the rules must abide by them of face the consequences” and Iain Duncan Smith, whose Chingford seat is another London marginal, has been critical of a “lack of leadership” from Number 10.
Five London MPs have been given jobs by Johnson: Paul Scully (Sutton & Cheam) is minister for London, Greg Hands (Chelsea & Fulham), is a business minister, Chris Philp (Croydon South) is a culture minister, Mike Freer (Finchley & Golders Green) is a foreign office minister, and Nickie Aiken (Cities of London & Westminster) is a Tory party vice chair.
Analysis of Tory MPs positions on Johnson and “partygate” by Politics.co.uk lists London MPs Felicity Buchan (Kensington) and Theresa Villiers (Chipping Barnet) as probably supporting Johnson and Bob Stewart (Beckenham), and Andrew Rosindell (Romford) as “publicly backing” the PM on the issue at some point.
Photo from Elliot Colburn’s Twitter feed.
On London is a small but influential website which strives to provide more of the kind of journalism the capital city needs. Become a supporter for £5 a month or £50 a year and receive an action-packed weekly newsletter and free entry to online events. Details here.