Theresa May locked in crunch talks with Tory grandees who demand to know when PM will quit

THERESA May today faces down Tory bosses who want her to lay out a timetable for quitting – or face a backbench coup.

The PM is meeting the MPs who run the powerful 1922 Committee.

They summoned her for the crunch summit demanding she explain exactly when she intends to trigger a leadership election.

Mrs May has been told that if she's not clear on the time scale, the committee will change the party's official rules.

That would allow a fresh no-confidence vote to take place as soon as next month.

Under the existing rules, MPs can't launch an official challenge to the party leader until December after she survived an attempted coup last year.


This week it emerged Mrs May is planning to bring her Brexit deal back to the Commons next month with a view to getting it signed off in time for the summer holiday.

That suggests she is likely to quit by the end of July, allowing a new leader to take over in time for the party conference in autumn.

Around half of the 1922 Committee executive want the PM to step down immediately, with the other half saying she should be allowed to make her own decision.

Last week Mrs May met the chairman, Sir Graham Brady, to discuss her future.

Today a string of top MPs and aides said it was time for the Prime Minister to quit.

Ex-Cabinet minister John Whittingdale blasted: "It is now time for May to go and for the country to move on.

"The country will thank her for her service, as I will, but we will breathe a huge sigh of relief as new life is injected into the Brexit negotiations with the EU as well as our domestic policy agenda."

Ed Vaizey, a senior Remainer, told ITV: "The Prime Minister's come to the end of the road and I think after the European elections she should stand down.

"She can't keep banging her head against a brick wall."

And Nick Timothy, who was Mrs May's closest ally as her chief of staff in No10, said: "It's now beyond time for the Prime Minister to accept that the game is up. Her premiership has failed, and her authority is shot."

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