Red Wall Tories in talks to 'defect to Labour' as pressure grows on Boris Johnson

The three male Tory MPs have already reportedly began formal discussions to move to the Opposition

Published

Three Red Wall Conservative MPs are reportedly in talks to defect to Labour as pressure continues to grow on Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Mr Johnson survived a confidence vote earlier this month after the release of the Sue Gray report and the cost-of-living crisis.

But pressure has intensified in recent days after the Tories lost two crunch by-elections in Wakefield and Tiverton and Honiton.

And now three male Tory MPs could defect to Labour with formal discussions about the move already underway, according to The Telegraph.

Pressure continues to grow on Boris Johnson
Pressure continues to grow on Boris Johnson
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer

The three MPs are said to have won by slim majorities in Red Wall areas in the north of the country and are worried they could lose their seats at the next election if they do not move to Labour.

While they are also reportedly dissatisfied with the PM’s leadership in recent weeks.

The news comes after Mr Johnson said questions over his leadership have been “settled”.

The Prime Minister, attending the G7 summit in Germany, brushed off reports that Tory MPs were continuing to plot against him in the wake of last week’s twin by-election defeats.

Asked if he was concerned about events at home, he insisted the matter had been dealt with in the confidence vote earlier this month.

He said: “We settled that a couple of weeks ago.

“What I’m focused on, and what we’re doing is getting on with, number one, all the stuff we’re doing to help people with the cost of living in the short term.”

Last week, Oliver Dowden resigned as chairman of the Conservative Party, citing the by-election results as the reason for his decision.

Mr Dowden wrote in a letter to the PM: “Yesterday’s Parliamentary by-elections are the latest in a run of very poor result for our party.

“Our supporters are distressed and disappointed by recent events, and I share their feelings.

“We cannot carry on with business as usual. Somebody must take responsibility and I have concluded that, in these circumstances, it would not be right for me to remain in office.”