Douglas Ross has said the prime minister should think about resigning, after 41% of Tory MPs said they did not have confidence in his leadership.

Asked by the BBC if Boris Johnson should resign, the Scottish Tory leader said: “He’s got to look at it.”

He said MPs from “across the entire parliamentary party” had no confidence in Mr Johnson.

Never had a prime minister lost as much support as he had on Monday, Mr Ross added.

“I think he really does have to reflect on that,” the Scottish Tory leader said.


The number of rebels in Monday night’s confidence vote was higher than predicted.

Mr Johnson was backed by 211 Conservative MPs while 148 voted to remove him.

Mr Ross said the number of MPs who said they did not have faith in the PM’s leadership would be “particularly troubling” for Boris Johnson, adding that it was “extremely serious and something the prime minister has to reflect on”.

Asked if Mr Johnson should resign, Mr Ross said: “I think he’s he’s got to look at it.”

He added: “This isn’t just some Scottish MPs, some Welsh MPs, a few from a certain part of England.

“This is across the entire parliamentary party – from people who supported staying in the EU and people who campaigned strongly to leave the EU, people who are on the right of the party, some in the centre and some on the left.”

‘Serious questions’ for PM

He would not be drawn on who he thought should lead the party after Mr Johnson, saying there were a lot of very good candidates.

Asked whether the PM had misled parliament over Downing Street parties, Mr Ross said Mr Johnson’s responses had been “quite clear” yet the evidence “suggests otherwise”.

And asked if Boris Johnson was a liar, Mr Ross said: “I think he has serious questions to answer.”

The Scottish Tory leader also responded to accusations from opposition parties that he had U-turned over whether the PM should go.

Last month, after the Sue Gray report was published, Mr Ross said on balance he still believed Boris Johnson should remain in office.

He said toppling him would cause instability that would benefit Putin, but added that the PM would still have to go if an inquiry found he had misled parliament.

Then on Monday, he said he was not one of the MPs who had called for the confidence vote – but said he would vote that he did not have confidence in the Mr Johnson’s leadership.

He said his belief that the PM should think about resigning was his final position, adding that the only change in recent months was the war in Ukraine.

He highlighted that President Zelensky had praised the prime minister as an important ally of Ukraine.

Mr Ross said: “I didn’t expect when I put in my letter to the 1922 committee in January that Russia would invade Ukraine.

“That’s still ongoing. We’ve seen from President Zelensky just today that there are still huge troubles in Ukraine and they need more and more support now than perhaps at any point in over 100 days of conflict.”

It still was not the right time for a leadership contest, he said, but noted that the confidence vote was prompted by other MPs in the party.

However, given that the vote was being held he said he had decided to “stick to” his initial belief that the prime minister’s actions had been “damaging to the government, to the country, and people are still extremely upset about what happened” over Partygate.

As the MP for Moray, Douglas Ross was one of six Scottish Tory MPs who were entitled to cast a ballot in the confidence motion.

Three other Scottish Tory MPs also said they had no confidence in Boris Johnson’s leadership.

That view is shared by the majority of Scottish Tory MSPs.

However, two Scottish Tory MPs, including the Scottish Secretary Alister Jack, gave the prime minister their support.

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