By Associated Press
LONDON — Britain’s beleaguered Prime Minister Boris Johnson is determined to cling to power despite an open revolt within his Conservative Party.
More than 30 government ministers quit in a mass walkout Wednesday, following in the footsteps of two of Johnson’s top Cabinet ministers who said Johnson’s government is no longer competent or trustworthy. Numerous Conservatives, including previously loyal allies, openly urged him to go.
If Johnson refuses to resign, the spotlight will turn to a small but influential Conservative group known as the 1922 Committee that has the power to rewrite party rules on leadership challenges and oust him before the next general election.
The committee could decide as early as Monday whether to change the rules.
Here’s a look at how the Conservatives can remove Johnson:
Can a no-confident vote take place?
Technically, not for another 11 months.
A no-confidence vote is triggered if 15% of Conservative lawmakers — currently 54 — write to Graham Brady, head of the 1922 Committee, to request it.
Johnson survived a confidence vote on Jun. 6, though the scale of the revolt — 41% of his party’s lawmakers voted against him — left his future in doubt.
Under current party rules, a year must pass before another formal leadership challenge can take place.
But the 1922 Committee has the power to change the rules to allow a fresh confidence vote within a shorter timeframe.
What is the 1922 Committee?
The 1922 Committee is a group of about a dozen Conservative backbenchers — lawmakers not serving in the prime minister’s government — who meet regularly to discuss party matters. The committee meets with the party leader monthly to represent the views of the rank and file membership.
Crucially, the group determines the rules under which a sitting leader can be challenged.
The committee was named because a group of lawmakers elected in 1922 formed it, albeit in 1923.