Harborough MP quits - and calls for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to step down

Harborough MP Neil O’Brien has today quit as Levelling-up Minister as embattled Prime Minister Boris Johnson teeters on the brink this afternoon.

By Red Williams
Wednesday, 6th July 2022, 3:13 pm
Neil O'Brien MP
Neil O'Brien MP

Mr O’Brien said it had been an “honour” to serve in Mr Johnson’s administration and was “extremely grateful” for the opportunity to serve the country.

But he has called for the under-fire Premier to step down now for the good of the Conservative party and the country.

“You have had the most difficult task in a generation.

“We hugely admire your fortitude, stamina and enduring optimism,” said the Harborough MP, who has been totally behind Mr Johnson until now.

“You can be rightly proud of the significant decisions which you have, by common acclamation, got right.

“However, it has become increasingly clear that the Government cannot function given the issues that have come to light and the way in which they have been handled,” says Mr O’Brien in a letter to the beleaguered Prime Minister.

“In good faith, we must ask that, for the good of the Party and the country, you step aside.”

Mr O’Brien has signed the letter alongside fellow Tory MPs Kemi Badenoch, Alex Burghart, Lee Rowley and Julia Lopez.

The Harborough MP has also tweeted this afternoon: “It's been an honour to work on the vital Levelling Up agenda, with a team of brilliant and dedicated officials... Even more so to work for an absolutely phenomenal Secretary of State in Michael Gove, and for a PM who has got many things right.

“But we can't go on like this.”

Mr O’Brien has acted as Mr Johnson faces being forced out of 10 Downing Street after Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid dramatically quit last night, sparking a flood of high-powered resignations in the Government.

Harborough MP Neil O’Brien has today quit as Levelling-up Minister as embattled Prime Minister Boris Johnson teeters on the brink this afternoon.

Mr O’Brien said it had been an “honour” to serve in Mr Johnson’s administration and was “extremely grateful” for the opportunity to serve the country.

But he has called for the under-fire Premier to step down now for the good of the Conservative party and the country.

“You have had the most difficult task in a generation.

“We hugely admire your fortitude, stamina and enduring optimism,” said the Harborough MP, who has been totally behind Mr Johnson until now.

“You can be rightly proud of the significant decisions which you have, by common acclamation, got right.

“However, it has become increasingly clear that the Government cannot function given the issues that have come to light and the way in which they have been handled,” says Mr O’Brien in a letter to the beleaguered Prime Minister.

“In good faith, we must ask that, for the good of the Party and the country, you step aside.”

Mr O’Brien has signed the letter alongside fellow Tory MPs Kemi Badenoch, Alex Burghart, Lee Rowley and Julia Lopez.

The Harborough MP has also tweeted this afternoon: “It's been an honour to work on the vital Levelling Up agenda, with a team of brilliant and dedicated officials... Even more so to work for an absolutely phenomenal Secretary of State in Michael Gove, and for a PM who has got many things right.

“But we can't go on like this.”

Mr O’Brien has acted as Mr Johnson faces being forced out of 10 Downing Street after Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid dramatically quit last night, sparking a flood of high-powered resignations in the Government.