Boris Johnson ‘pressed to make Jeremy Hunt chancellor by allies for dream team’

PM is urged to offer Jeremy Hunt the role of Chancellor of the Exchequer in a bid to unite the Conservative Party after the confidence vote in Boris Johnson, sources say

Boris Johnson is advised to try and bring Jeremy Hunt on board, sources say
Boris Johnson is advised to try and bring Jeremy Hunt on board, sources say

Boris Johnson is being advised to offer Jeremy Hunt the role of Chancellor of the Exchequer to bring stability while he tries to hold on to power, sources say.

The Prime Minister survived a no-confidence vote 211-148 on Monday after months of claiming he lied about parties at Downing Street.

But he was humbled with a cloud over his future after 41% of his own MPs voted to oust him – just 906 days after his landslide in the 2019 election.

The result is worse than that of the 117 MPs who tried to oust Theresa May over Brexit – and a major blow to Mr Johnson’s authority.

Ms May won 63% of the vote in her own no-confidence vote in December 2018 – but she was forced to resign just five months later.

Mr Johnson and Jeremy Hunt have been described together as a “dream team”.


(Getty Images)

Now, as he seeks to rebuild and create more unity, his allies have suggested Mr Hunt could be a good option as chancellor and form a “dream team” with the prime minister, the reported Daily Telegraph.

This is based on the idea that Mr Hunt would do a good job of guiding the country through a difficult time when people are suffering from a cost of living crisis.

At the same time, however, there is no guarantee that Mr Hunt would accept the job of working alongside Mr Johnson, who beat him in the 2019 lead race.

While many MPs publicly backed him, a number of high-profile names, such as former Health Secretary Hunt, called on others to vote him out.

Mr Hunt would normally be keen to take on the role of chancellor, but he has spoken out against prime minister and turned down the job of defense secretary after the 2019 election.

Mr Johnson clung to power after surviving a no-confidence vote


POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

He tweeted after the vote of confidence: “The Conservative Party must now decide whether to change its leader. Because of the situation in Ukraine, this was not a debate that I wanted to have now, but according to our rules we have to do it.

“Conservative MPs entrusted with power know in our hearts that we are not giving the British people the leadership they deserve. We do not offer the integrity, competence and vision necessary to unleash the tremendous potential of our country.”

It would also raise the question of Rishi Sunak’s future if Mr Hunt were installed as chancellor – he would face a demotion even though he would have trailed behind the prime minister.

Mr Johnson is now trying to move forward with announcements on Brexit and housing while trying to get back on the front foot.

And Mr Sunak has similarly now reiterated his pledge to reduce corporate taxes later in the year.

Rishi Sunak remained with the Prime Minister during the no-confidence vote



Speaking to think tank Onward, Mr Sunak said he would propose a range of measures in the autumn to encourage investment, according to excerpts released by the Treasury.

It follows criticism from groups like the CBI and the Federation of Small Businesses that its cost-of-living support package last month did not include help for cash-strapped businesses.

In his speech, Mr Sunak said that only if government and the market work together to increase productivity will it be possible to build a “sustainable, high-growth, high-wage economy” in the UK.

“But we have to be honest about the longstanding weaknesses that are hampering our ability to get there…especially in terms of investment, capability and innovation,” he said.

“The growth and productivity challenge is a shared problem. Government and the market must solve it together.”

Mr. Sunak said his plan for economic growth is based on three priorities – capital, people and ideas.

“Therefore, in the fall we will launch a series of tax cuts and reforms to incentivize companies to invest more, train more and innovate more,” he said.

“Because when you get this right, not only does the ‘economy’ improve, but real places do too.”

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