IF MAY was hoping for a quiet summer when all the fuss and excitement over Brexit would die down and speculation over her position would fade away into the summer haze then she has been sorely disappointed. Instead, the Tory Wars have blazed across the media with increased ferocity because newspapers have spent all August desperately needing to fill column inches and there have been plenty of dissenting Tory voices willing to provide them with good copy.
Conference season promises to be even hotter than the summer roast for Mrs May. Rumours abound that disgruntled activists intend to protest outside their own conference and MPs on both sides of the divide are looking for any excuse they can find to stay away. A bloodbath beckons.
Andrew Bridgen MP said that Mrs Mays standing is “at an all-time low” following the latest battles between Brexiteers and Remoaning Chancellor Phillip Hammond. He called on all his “right-minded” colleagues to submit letters to the 1922 Committee expressing no confidence in Mrs May and predicted: “She could be the first sitting Tory Prime Minister I can remember who faces a slow-handclap during her speech or doesn’t get a standing ovation at the end of it. I wouldn’t be surprised if she was even booed.”
However, this can as much be seen as an expression of powerlessness as dissatisfaction – something of a stalemate now exists. Most Tory Brexiteers are publicly opposed to the Chequers sell-out but equally most back the continuation of Mrs Mays Presmiership, fearing her fall could precipitate a General Election which the Tories could lose. None of them seem to have a clear strategy to effect real change and it is this more than anything else which could yet see May cling onto Number 10.