The ‘anyone but Corbyn’ faction are plotting away, according to Skwawkbox, to ensure that a no-confidence vote against Johnson succeeds but then the idea is that Parliament fails to support Corbyn in a confidence vote in him, thus paving the way for someone to take over who is more amenable to the centrist establishment. This all sounds very plausible. The names of Ken Clarke and Harriet Harman have been mooted as temporary trustees of the keys to No.10, but surely there must be at least a score of particularly Labour MPs who fancy their chances. Yvette Cooper and Hillary Benn both come to mind, and I bet the thought has crossed their minds. But how would this square with the Labour Party? It would be an effective coup, since it is highly unlikely that whoever took on this role might want to voluntarily relinquish it after—who knows what—and hand the baton back to Corbyn. The Labour Party would be split, the 1930s all over again. Conversely, the short term government proposal could strengthen the hard right in the Tory party. It’s hard to see Johnson standing aside from his party’s leadership even if he were ousted from No.10. In this scenario he may look to Ted Heath for a precedent. Ironies upon ironies. Who would want to miss this autumn’s Whitehall farce?
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