Delay no confidence vote?

Picking the right moment will be crucial

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Will Labour succeed in a vote of no confidence?

By Joe Harker

Whether it is Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt that becomes the UK's next prime minister they can expect to face a vote of no confidence in their government from Labour.

The opposition had initially been planning on holding the vote soon after the Conservatives announced their new leader on July 23, as parliament rises for recess two days later and doesn't return until September.

However, as Labour wants to win the vote they are willing to bide their time and convince a number of wavering Tory MPs to vote against their own party in government.

The Claim:

The Daily Mirror reports that Labour will wait until autumn to trigger a motion of no confidence in the government.

They are in the process of talking to a group of Tory MPs who believe Boris Johnson will be the next prime minister and are unhappy enough at the prospect to consider supporting Labour in a vote of no confidence.

This group is believed to be led by current chancellor of the exchequer Philip Hammond, who is almost certain to lose his position when the next Tory leader picks his cabinet.

Labour's new position is to wait for the next prime minister to attempt to get the UK out of the EU, whether by attempting to secure changes to the withdrawal agreement or pushing onwards with do deal Brexit, before triggering their motion.

They want the next prime minister to commit to a course of action that will draw strong opposition from some elements of the Tory party before making a move.

The Counter Claim:

However, Tory MPs won't want to vote against a Johnson led government if they can help it and certainly not to support a no confidence motion proposed by Jeremy Corbyn.

Hammond's bloc of around 30 Tory MPs are thought to be willing to block a no deal Brexit and the proroguing of parliament to force it through, but many of them would be far more hesitant to back a motion of no confidence.

A successful vote of no confidence could very well put the Tories out of government while Corbyn is anathema to many Conservative voters. If the faction of 30 MPs allow his motion to pass and it leads to a general election what will their voters make of them?

Hammond and his allies within the party would rather push against a no deal Brexit and potentially back a second referendum than put the Tories out of power and open the possibility of Corbyn in Downing Street.

They see only three options, the first being an unlikely event where the Conservatives finally unite around Theresa May's withdrawal agreement, the second being a general election they feel would be "catastrophic" for the party and the third another referendum to settle the Brexit matter.

The Facts:

Politics Home reports Labour are "in talks" with the Tory MPs they think can be brought round to backing a motion of no confidence in a future Johnson-led government.

They are trying to ascertain when the best time would be to call the vote and how many MPs would say they had no confidence in their own party's government.

A time in early October after the new prime minister has committed to a Brexit strategy is seen as an ideal time for the vote, though it would leave the UK close to the EU exit date of October 31.

It would not take many Tory MPs supporting Labour's motion for the government to lose the vote of no confidence, with the current government's majority perilously slim and propped up by a confidence and supply deal with the DUP. Labour, the Liberal Democrats, Green Party, SNP and Plaid Cymru would all be expected to vote against the government.

If the government loses a vote of no confidence they are obliged to resign, after which there is a 14 day period when someone else can attempt to form a government. If this period passes without a new government a general election is held.

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