A HEREFORDSHIRE MP's scathing letter of no confidence in Prime Minister Boris Johnson "is not a leadership bid," he has said.

Jesse Norman, MP for Hereford and South Herefordshire, published his letter to Mr Johnson, in which he says that he can see no circumstances under which he could serve in a government led by the Prime Minister this morning.

The former minister assumed office in May 2010 and stepped down from his role as Financial Secretary to the Treasury in 2021.

His public announcement came as the Conservative party gear up for a crunch vote on Johnson's future at the helm of the party this evening in the wake of civil servant Sue Gray's Partygate report.


The Prime Minister was informed on Sunday that he would face the vote after Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the backbench 1922 Committee, confirmed he had received the 54 letters from Conservative MPs needed to trigger the ballot.

The vote – by secret ballot – will take place at Westminster on Monday between 6pm and 8pm, with the count to take place immediately afterwards.

Mr Norman, who wrote that he would leave it to his colleagues to decide where they stand in relation to the concerns he had raised, stated his letter was not a leadership bid.

What happens next?

At least 50 per cent of Tory MPs must vote “no confidence” for the Prime Minister to lose.

But even if Mr Johnson survives the vote on Monday evening, his leadership could be fatally undermined if a significant number of MPs vote against him.

How does a Tory leadership contest work?

If Mr Johnson is voted out or forced to resign, a leadership contest to replace him as the head of the Tory Party would take place – although he is likely to remain in post as Prime Minister until a successor is in place.

The contest takes place in two stages.

In the first stage, Conservative MPs put themselves forward as candidates.

All Tory MPs then vote in a series of rounds to reduce the number of candidates until only two remain.

The second stage of the contest sees the two remaining candidates put to a vote of Conservative Party members.

Mr Johnson won the leadership contest in 2019 against Jeremy Hunt, following Theresa May’s resignation.

Who could replace Boris Johnson?

If Boris Johnson was to resign and a Conservative leadership election triggered, according to Sky Bet, Chair of the Health and Social Care Select Committee Jeremy Hunt is the most likely replacement.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is placed as the second most likely replacement.

Full list of odds for Prime Minister

Jeremy Hunt - 11/2

Rishi Sunak - 8/1

Tom Tugendhat - 8/1

Ben Wallace - 10/1

Liz Truss - 10/1

Penny Mordaunt - 12/1

Sajid Javid - 16/1

Nadim Zahawi - 18/1

Dominic Raab - 25/1

Michael Gove - 25/1