Andrew Marr: 'Should the Tories be able to foist another leader on this country?'

20 October 2022, 18:28

LBC presenter Andrew Marr
LBC presenter Andrew Marr. Picture: LBC

By Kit Heren

Andrew Marr has questioned whether the Conservative party should be able to "foist" yet another Prime Minister - their third this year - onto the British people.

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Speaking on LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr after the resignation of Liz Truss and the launch of the latest Tory leadership contest, Andrew asked whether the government should call another general election.

Andrew said: "Elizabeth of Bohemia was much mocked long ago because she was on the throne so briefly. Well tonight we have our own one. Liz Truss was prime minister for 44 days, a shorter tenure than anyone in our entire democratic history.

"She had tried an economic experiment in unfunded tax cuts and a bonfire of regulations for which the British people had never voted, and which exploded on its first contact with economic reality.

Read more: Penny Mordaunt, Rishi Sunak or Boris Johnson: Who could replace Liz Truss?

"Now the Conservative party are offering us yet another Prime Minister after what will be an unprecedentedly short selection. Among those thinking of running, apparently is a certain Boris Johnson.

"Already Tory MPs are talking about defecting to Labour, or resigning and causing by-elections if he dares to do so. So that is all going swimmingly well."

Watch Tonight with Andrew Marr exclusively on Global Player every Monday to Thursday from 6pm to 7pm

Andrew Marr says Liz Truss' exit is 'parliamentary democracy working'.

Andrew went on: "Rishi Sunak, the former chancellor, and Penny Mordaunt, who delighted Tory MPs in the Commons this week, and whose campaign PM for PM is already up and running, are almost certainly candidates too.

"There’ll be a high bar," he said. "They’ll need 100 Tory MPs to back them, and there may or may not be an online vote of members next week."

The Conservative party will ask its members again who they think should be leader, several sources have confirmed.

Andrew added: "But should the Tories be able to foist yet another leader on this country, without asking us first? In a few moments, you’ll hear the opposition leader Keir Starmer tell me about his plans for a stable Labour government, following an early general election. The opinion polls say he would romp to a huge victory right now - which is of course exactly why Tory MPs are unlikely to give him the chance.

You can also listen to the podcast Tonight with Andrew Marr only on Global Player.

"Before we crack on I just want to say one more thing," Andrew said. "There is already a kind of deranged conspiracy theory going round on the right of politics that what’s happened at Westminster is a disgrace and a globalist coup manipulated by shadowy bankers and internationalist liberals.

"To which I would say, respectfully, but firmly, phooey!

Read more: Boris Johnson ‘plans to run for PM’ as Rishi Sunak and Penny Mordaunt set to fight it out for No10

Read more: 'Wild horses won't stop Boris if he wants to run again': Rachel Johnson on former PM's possible plans to throw his hat in the ring

"The Tory Party imposed on its MPs a leader who tried an experiment which didn’t work and for which nobody had voted. And so they’ve got rid of her.

"It was messy, scrappy and undignified for sure. But that’s what Parliament is like. An all-too-human and ruthless version in miniature of the country itself.

"What happened was no angrier or more extraordinary than events I have seen for instance during the fall of Margaret Thatcher or John Major’s fight with the Maastricht rebels, or the bitter Commons battles over Brexit.

"This isn’t a conspiracy, or the failure of Parliamentary democracy. This is parliamentary democracy working."