Rishi Sunak
Rishi SunakReuters

Conservative MPs in Britain have launched a new drive to remove Rishi Sunak as Prime Minister after the Budget failed to improve his polling figures, with former Prime Minister Boris Johnson at the top of their wish-list as his replacement, The Daily Mail reported on Sunday.

The report noted that since the budget was delivered on Wednesday, the Tories' standing in the polls has fallen as low as 18 per cent, with Nigel Farage's Reform just five per cent behind.

One MP said, “I previously thought it would be too reckless to remove yet another Prime Minister, but now I don't think we have any choice.”

A former Cabinet Minister quoted in the report said, “If Boris came back for the General Election it could save as many as 80 MPs. It would give Conservatives hope, a reason to vote.:

“If Boris is out in the cold, voters will simply stay at home and sit on their hands. The party needs to wake up fast – these weeks before the local elections could be crucial,” added the former Minister.

The Daily Mail reported that the moves to oust Sunak are being coordinated by long-term fans of Johnson, led by Lady McAlpine, who played a key role in organizing a recent meeting of more than 50 MPs and peers to be talked through polling data she had funded.

This poll concluded that only Johnson could save the Tories from a catastrophic defeat.

A spokesman for Johnson distanced him from the plotting, saying, “Boris fully supports the Government”.

Johnson resigned as Conservative party leader in July of 2022, amid resignations by several of his ministers.

He was succeeded as Prime Minister by Liz Truss who resigned less than two months after taking office. Johnson contemplated running for the party leadership again after but ultimately decided against it, with Sunak taking over as Prime Minister.

Johnson quit as a lawmaker altogether in June of last year, after being told he will be sanctioned for misleading Parliament.