PRESSURE is mounting on Boris Johnson as cabinet minister have been urging him to leave Downing Street, as he haemorrhaged support across the Tory ranks. 

Welsh secretary Simon Hart is among those who have attended at Downing Street and is understood to be among those who have told Johnson his time is up as is home secretary Priti Patel.

The PA news agency understands that Ms Patel has spoken to the Prime Minister to convey the “overwhelming view” of the parliamentary party.

Resignations, sparked by the shock announcements from Rishi Sunak and Sajid Javid, have continued throughout today with close to 40 ministers and parliamentary aides quitting government posts. 

Opponents have also sought to step up the pressure on the under-fire prime minister with Labour demanding a general election. 

Cardiff West MP Kevin Brenan told BBC Wales: “We want a general election we think we would be a better government.” He added: “A general election is needed to clear the air in this country.” 

Earlier first minister Mark Drakeford had tweeted that change was needed. He wrote on his official Prif Weinidog account: “We need a UK Government and a Prime Minister the country can trust. 

“Instead we have a UK Government solely focused on propping up the Prime Minister as he lurches from one crisis to another.  

“It’s time for a change.” 

Drakeford later told BBC Wales: “The daily business of government, those real challenges, the war in Ukraine with the cost-of-living, the fact coronavirus is on the rise again, it’s impossible to find people in the London government able to concentrate on those things while there’s this constant preoccupation with the fate of a single individual overtakes them all.” 

From his own Conservative ranks in Wales there has been little vocal support while three of the party’s 13 MPs in the country are among those to have resigned positions as parliamentary private secretaries. 

Ynys Môn MP Virginia Crosbie quit as an aide to the Welsh Office last night while Craig Williams quit the same role at the Treasury

Shortly after the Montgomeryshire MP quit his fellow Powys Tory, Brecon and Radnorshire’s Fay Jones, said she would resign her role in the office of the leader of the house tomorrow unless the prime minister resigns. 

When Johnon met parliament’s liaison committee Welsh Affairs Select Committee chairman Stephen Crabb asked if the government was “deteriorating”. 

The Preseli Pembrokeshire Conservative MP asked: “Do you not feel prime minister the very ability, capacity of this overnment to address these enormous overhanging issues is deteriorating as we speak?” 

The Prime Minister replied: “The government is certainly focusing on the issues that matter, and today we are cutting taxes for everybody, about £330 for 30 million people.” 

The leader of the Scottish Conservatives Douglas Ross says “more and more” of his colleagues now agree that Boris Johnson should resign. 

He told the PA news agency: “I said that, at the no confidence vote two or three weeks ago that I could not in good faith continue to have confidence in him and now we are seeing more and more colleagues have reached the same conclusion.” 

Despite the pressure, and speculation he has only days or even hours remaining, Johnson has insisted he’s not “going to step down” but sources said Grant Shapps and Brandon Lewis are among a group of once-loyal allies demanding he quits. 

His battle to remain in power will reach new heights during the clash with Cabinet members, with sources telling the PA news agency Mr Lewis, the Northern Ireland Secretary, believes his position is “now untenable”. 

Mr Shapps, the Transport Secretary, who was key in the Prime Minister’s fight for survival during partygate, was also understood to be part of the group, as was Hart. 

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng is also understood to believe the Prime Minister now has to go. 


Reports even suggested Nadhim Zahawi, who was only appointed Chancellor on Tuesday, will be among those taking part in the showdown with Mr Johnson. 

But loyalist Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries was also in No 10 and insisted the Prime Minister could still continue in office. 

Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab also remained loyal to Mr Johnson and defended him at a session of the backbench 1922 Committee. 

Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the Conservative 1922 Committee, was thought to be in Downing Street communicating the views of backbenchers following the meeting in Parliament dominated by MPs calling for Mr Johnson to go. 

The talks came after the Prime Minister faced an intense grilling before opposition critics and Tory MPs alike on the Commons Liaison Committee, as the stream of ministerial resignations continued. 

After being repeatedly pressed for a direct answer, Mr Johnson said “of course” he ruled out triggering a general election if the Tories force him from office. 

Told that there was a delegation of Cabinet ministers waiting for him at Downing Street, Mr Johnson referred to the invasion of Ukraine and said “I can’t for the life of me see how it is responsible just to walk away from that”. 

He did not deny reports that Cabinet minister Michael Gove told him early on Wednesday that he must stand down, but insisted he would still be leader on Thursday. 

Additional reporting: PA

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