The Corner


Theresa May to Face a No-Confidence Vote

Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May visits the Royal Welsh Show in Llanelwedd, Wales, July 26, 2018. (Christopher Furlong/Pool via Reuters)

It’s official: Theresa May will face a leadership challenge tonight.

In a Tory leadership contest, MPs who wish to hold a vote of no confidence must send in 48 letters to Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the backbench 1922 committee. Though many in the Conservative party had been putting off a no-confidence vote, May’s Withdrawal Agreement, refusal to publish the official legal advice on Brexit, and subsequent delay of the Parliamentary vote have compromised her authority.

In order to keep her job, May must gain a majority of Conservative MPs — 158 MPs. Even if she wins by just one vote, her position will be secure for a year. But if she loses, the Tory party will find two candidates and hold an open election.

In Tory-party leadership contests, candidates are knocked out in rounds. The final two are put before the Tory membership in an “open election.” This is not the same as a general election where, hypothetically, the leader of the Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn, could become prime minister. Indeed, a general election only occurs if the PM calls one, if there is a no-confidence vote in the government, or when the next one is scheduled which is in 2022.

But this vote is crucial nonetheless. For months now, Theresa May has been part and parcel with woeful Brexit policy. And the best way to change said policy? Change the prime minister! In truth, the Tories should have done this months ago, but there’s time to redeem themselves. Now is the moment to get rid of Theresa May and elect someone who believes in Brexit.

Madeleine Kearns — Madeleine Kearns is a William F. Buckley Fellow in Political Journalism at the National Review Institute. She is from Glasgow, Scotland, and is a trained singer.

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