The Daily Telegraph

Tory rebels asking us to help oust Truss, say Labour MPS

- By Camilla Turner and Tony Diver

REBEL Tories have been asking Labour MPS to help them overthrow Liz Truss, The Daily Telegraph has been told.

Conservati­ve backbenche­rs are growing frustrated with the Prime Minister’s leadership, but lack any mechanisms to remove her as she has one-year immunity from a no-confidence vote.

As things stand, the only way would be to change party rules – a decision only the executive of the 1922 committee of backbenche­rs can make.

One Labour MP told The Telegraph: “Tories are speaking to us saying, ‘This is a complete nightmare and there is no way out.’ We are being asked, ‘Can’t you do something about her?’”

The MP added that they had been approached personally by one Red Wall MP and another from the One Nation group of moderates.

The claims came as it emerged that Jeremy Hunt held talks with Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the 1922 committee, last night.

The meeting, 24 hours after Sir Graham met Ms Truss, added to speculatio­n about the PM’S position, although Treasury sources insisted it was a routine briefing for the Chancellor ahead of him addressing the committee today.

Labour could table a vote of no confidence in the Commons in the hope Tory MPS would be prepared to vote against the Government. But the Fixed-term Parliament­s Act 2011 removed the prerogativ­e power to dissolve Parliament.

A Labour source said: “A vote of no confidence doesn’t have the constituti­onal standing that it used to. The Tory party are the ones that elected her, they need to get rid of her.”

Sir Keir Starmer yesterday said some Tory MPS believe a “change of government to Labour might be a good idea”.

He told the BBC they should “put country before party”, adding: “Quite a lot of them are saying, behind the scenes, we do think a change of government to Labour might be a good idea, but it wouldn’t be good for our party. That is the wrong way round.”

Meanwhile, Labour announced a plan to force a vote on fracking in the Commons, which would be binding and could reintroduc­e a ban on the practice.

It relies on 35 or more Tory MPS siding with Labour today on a motion to let them schedule another vote next month. Labour hopes the vote will force Tory rebels on fracking into the open.

Jacob Rees-mogg, the Business Secretary, has said he does not intend to allow a vote.

A Labour source said: “We know Tory MPS are privately terrified that fracking is unpopular in their constituen­cies.”

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