Sir Bill Cash has become the third Conservative MP to publicly say he is considering a vote of no confidence in David Cameron, following weeks of in-fighting in the party over the European Union referendum.
Mr Cash, a veteran Eurosceptic who chairs the European Scrutiny Committee, branded the Prime Minister’s EU Remain campaign as “monumentally misleading propaganda” in an interview with the Telegraph.
He added he is “certainly considering” submitting a letter of no confidence in the party leader to Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 Committee - a backbench group of Conservative MPs in Westminster.
"My view is that they’ve been engaged in monumentally misleading propaganda… they have relentlessly and flagrantly been anything but impartial and inaccurate,” he said.
“Basically I think that they have got a very, very short time in which to correct all this. In my 30 year I’ve never seen anything on this including during Sir John Major’s time.”
His intervention follows Nadine Dorries, who in a frank admission, revealed to ITV’s Peston on Sunday that she believed Mr Cameron will be “toast” within days of a Brexit vote. She added that she had already submitted a letter of no confidence and confirmed she is now backing Boris Johnson, the former Mayor of London, as the future leader of the party.
What has the EU ever done for us?
What has the EU ever done for us?
1/7 1. It gives you freedom to live, work and retire anywhere in Europe
As a member of the EU, UK citizens benefit from freedom of movement across the continent. Considered one of the so-called four pillars of the European Union, this freedom allows all EU citizens to live, work and travel in other member states.
2/7 2. It sustains millions of jobs
A report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research, released in October 2015, suggested 3.1 million British jobs were linked to the UK’s exports to the EU.
3/7 3. Your holiday is much easier - and safer
Freedom to travel is one of the most exercised benefits of EU membership, with Britons having made 31 million visits to the EU in 2014 alone. But a lot of the benefits of being an EU citizen are either taken for granted or go unnoticed.
4/7 4. It means you're less likely to get ripped off
Consumer protection is a key benefit of the EU’s single market, and ensures members of the British public receive equal consumer rights when shopping anywhere in Europe.
5/7 5. It offers greater protection from terrorists, paedophiles, people traffickers and cyber-crime
Another example of a lesser-known advantage of EU membership is the benefit of cross-country coordination and cooperation in the fight against crime.
6/7 6. Our businesses depend on it
According to 71% of all members of the Confederation of British Influence (CBI), and 67 per cent of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), the EU has had an overall positive impact on their business.
7/7 7. We have greater influence
Robin Niblett, Director of think-tank Chatham House, stated in a report published last year: “For a mid-sized country like the UK, which will never again be economically dominant either globally or regionally, and whose diplomatic and military resources are declining in relative terms, being a major player in a strong regional institution can offer a critical lever for international influence.
Party rules dictate that 50 backbenchers must follow suit to trigger a vote of no confidence. However, it is likely that Mr Cameron would survive such a vote.
She said: “My letter is already in. If the Remain camp wins by a large majority – I think it would have to be 60/40 – then David Cameron might just survive; but if Remain win by a narrow majority or lose ... he’s toast within days. He has lied profoundly, and I think that is actually really at the heart of why Conservative MPs have been so angered. To say that Turkey is not going to join the European Union as far as 30 years is a lie."
Prominent backbencher Andrew Bridgen also said that more than 50 MPs were ready to move against the Tory leader if Britons vote for Brexit on June 23.
But Tory peer Lord Finkelstein said on Sunday it was unlikely that any coup against the Prime Minister would be successful.
Appearing on the Westminster Hour, he said: “I think it will not be difficult to find 50 people who are discontented with David Cameron at the end, probably more, but I think it would be very hard to produce a majority of the Conservative Party that wanted to remove him if he, or indeed even enough people to want to remove him and that I think will make even those who are against him think twice before they start a letter campaign that might end up strengthening him not weakening him.”Reuse content