Liz Truss’ premiership was in free fall last night.
In an astonishing couple of hours, she fired Suella Braverman after a 90-minute “scream” – then saw her Chief Whip “step down.”
The deposed interior minister launched an outspoken attack on the prime minister, accusing her of breaking key promises and wavering over manifesto commitments such as reduced migration.
Chief Whip Wendy Morton and her deputy Craig Whittaker appeared to quit after Miss Truss reversed her plan to remove Tory MPs who voted against the government on fracking.
Number 10 couldn’t tell last night if it still had a top whip.
The prime minister is said to have fired the interior minister after a 90-minute shouting match. A source said Ms Braverman, pictured left, was furious when asked to relax immigration rules to boost economic growth and appease the Office for Budget Responsibility that the government’s economic plans were adding up.
MP Chris Bryant posted a scene of the Tory division in the Westminster Lobby after 36 Tory MPs ignored the three-line whip over fracking, including former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng
Amid chaotic scenes in the House of Commons, Deputy Prime Minister Therese Coffey and Secretary of State Jacob Rees-Mogg were accused of ‘abusing’ MPs through the voting lobbies – a claim both ministers denied.
When government discipline collapsed, Mr Whittaker was heard to say to his colleagues, “I’m fucking furious and I don’t care anymore.”
Tory MPs yelled at an ashen Ms Truss, “It’s a mess.”
An ally of the Prime Minister’s Office said it seemed impossible for her to regain her authority, adding: “It feels like it’s over.”
Senior Tory MPs urgently discussed strategies for impeaching Miss Truss, though the precise timing and mechanism remain unclear — as well as who could succeed her.
Some MPs believe her authority is draining so quickly that she will have to resign by the weekend, possibly as early as today.
Downing Street said Ms Braverman, the shortest-serving Home Secretary in modern times, had resigned after sending a confidential document to a Tory MP in violation of the ministerial code.
But multiple sources said her departure followed a ‘fiery’ 90-minute meeting between her and Ms Truss at No. 10 the night before, during which the Home Secretary warned the Prime Minister it would be ‘insane’ to break the immigration rules. easing to stimulate economic growth. .
In an explosive resignation letter last night, Ms Braverman suggested that the prime minister should quit and destroy her record.
“It is clear to everyone that we are going through a tumultuous time,” she wrote. “I am concerned about the direction of this government. Not only have we broken important promises promised to our voters, but I have also been deeply concerned about this administration’s commitment to deliver on the manifesto’s commitments, such as reducing the overall number of migrations.”
Deputy Prime Minister Therese Coffey and Commerce Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg, pictured, were accused of ‘abusing’ MPs through the voting lobbies – a claim both ministers denied
As former Secretary of State Grant Shapps, who openly conspired against Miss Truss, became Home Secretary:
– The Prime Minister made another U-turn by announcing that pensions would be protected ‘triple lock’;
– She insisted that she should not resign and told the MPs: ‘I am a fighter, not a quitter’;
– The Prime Minister also offered a fawning apology, saying she was ‘sorry’ and had ‘made mistakes’;
– 36 Tory MPs ignored the whip of three lines over fracking, including former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng;
– Labor called for an investigation into the alleged ‘bullying’ of Tory MPs during the vote;
– Party leader Sir Keir Starmer mocked the Prime Minister and asked her: ‘What’s the use of a Prime Minister whose promises don’t last even a week?’
– One of the prime minister’s closest associates was suspended over a briefing No. 10 in which former Chancellor Sajid Javid was described as a ‘s***’ minister;
– Tory MPs on the party’s right warned of a takeover by Remainer, with Foreign Secretary James Cleverly now the only Brexiteer in a top cabinet position;
– Former Cabinet Minister Nadine Dorries led a Tory uprising over cost-cutting plans to delay the limit on social care.
Labor called for an investigation into alleged ‘bullying’ of Tory MPs during the vote, accusing Therese Coffey of ‘abusing’ other MPs during last night’s chaos
Ms Braverman’s departure came just five days after Mr Kwarteng was fired in the wake of the market turmoil caused by last month’s emergency budget.
A source said the email she sent from her phone about immigration policy was a “clear violation” of the ministerial code’s requirement to respect confidentiality.
Ms Braverman acknowledged the ‘mistake’ last night, but said the policy would be announced ‘soon’, and much of it had already been notified to MPs.
A Whitehall source said the “trivial” episode appeared to be a pretext for the removal of a senior minister who had made no secret of her lingering leadership ambitions.
“She’s clearly gone because of an argument,” the source said. “She was always a flight risk, like Penny Mordaunt – she’s positioning herself for what’s to come.” Two sources said the interior minister’s departure the previous evening followed a meeting between the couple on immigration policy.
One of them described the 90-minute encounter as a “screaming party” and said lofty voices could be heard outside.
Another said Ms Braverman was furious when she was asked to relax immigration rules to boost economic growth and appease the Bureau of Fiscal Responsibility that the government’s economic plans were adding up.
A source said she told Miss Truss the idea was “insane,” adding, “Are we just going to throw away all the pledges from a manifesto?”
Ms Braverman has also clashed with the Prime Minister over her plan to relax visa rules as part of a major trade deal with India. Downing Street is now bracing for the possibility of a resignation speech in the House of Commons from Mrs Braverman later in the day.
Miss Truss is said to have initially planned to appoint Mr Javid as Home Secretary, a role he has previously held.
But the two were at an impasse because of the briefing queue over which the assistant has been suspended.