LONDON -- Conservative lawmakers will vote Monday night on whether to remove Prime Minister Boris Johnson from office. His reputation has been damaged by revelations that Johnson and his staff had held parties that violated the COVID-19 lockdown rules that they imposed upon the country.
Here's how The Conservative Party challenges and changes leaders.
VOTE NO CONFIDENCE
If 15% of Conservative lawmakers (currently 54) write a letter to Graham Brady the head of the powerful group of Conservative legislators called The 1922 Committee, a no-confidence vote will be triggered. Because it was established by the first year's elected lawmakers, it is named that. It now includes Conservative lawmakers who don't hold any official government positions.
Brady declared Monday that the threshold was met. He said that the vote would be held in Parliament on Monday evening and the results will be announced shortly thereafter.
Johnson must have 180 votes to win; secret ballots are available for all 359 Tory legislators. If Johnson survives, there will be no other challenge for one year unless the rules change.
Johnson would have to resign if he loses and there would be a contest for the party leadership. He would then be prohibited from running. Johnson would continue to be the party leader and prime minster until a replacement is found.
THE LEADERSHIP CONTEST
There are two stages to the Conservative leadership election. The first stage is where Conservative lawmakers cast an initial vote for all candidates. The candidate receiving the lowest number of votes is eliminated. Voting continues until there are at least two candidates.
If there are two remaining candidates, they are put up for a vote by the entire party membership.
Johnson and Jeremy Hunt were the two top candidates in the 2019 leadership contest. Johnson won easily with nearly two-thirds vote cast by party members.
The winner of the election becomes the leader and prime minister of the Conservative Party, without the need to hold a national election.
Any Conservative lawmaker is eligible to run for the office of party leader to replace Johnson. Two names that are most frequently mentioned are Treasury chief Rishi Unak and Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, both highly respected ministers within the party.
Other potential candidates include: Dominic Raab (Deputy Prime Minister), who ran against Johnson last year; Nadhim Zahawi, Education Secretary; a key figure behind the U.K.’s successful COVID-19 vaccination program; Penny Mordaunt who is seen as a rising star in international trade; Leveling up Secretary Michael Gove who is one of Johnson's most powerful government members; Sajid Javid Health Secretary, who has led the coronavirus response to the country; Hunt, who said that he still has avirus response to the country's; and Hunt who stated that he doesn't abandons hope to become prime minister some day.