Opposition to Boris Johnson's social care reforms plan crumbles

Opposition to Boris Johnson’s social care reforms plan crumbles as he refuses to rule out snap Cabinet reshuffle

  • Boris Johnson refused to rule out snap reshuffle three times at press conference
  • Tory opposition to the Prime Minister’s social care reforms has been falling apart
  • Tory whips seemed confident they crushed a backbench rebellion ahead of vote  
  • Leaked plans to raise NI to pay for social care sparked uproar on Tory benches

Tory opposition to Boris Johnson’s social care reforms was falling apart last night as the Prime Minister refused to rule out holding a snap reshuffle this week.

MPs will vote on the plans this evening and Tory whips seemed confident they had crushed a backbench rebellion.

Over the weekend, leaked plans to raise national insurance to pay for social care sparked uproar on the Tory benches, with some MPs even warning they could vote against a plan that will break the party’s manifesto pledge on tax. 

On Sunday, Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg noted that George Bush had lost a US election after breaking a solemn pledge not to raise taxes.

Tory opposition to Boris Johnson’s (pictured) social care reforms was falling apart last night, while MPs will vote on the plans this evening

But little opposition was seen as Mr Johnson set out the details of the plan in the Commons yesterday. 

The discipline appeared to have been reinforced by growing speculation that the PM may conduct a reshuffle of his top team as soon as tomorrow.

Mr Johnson yesterday refused to rule out a snap reshuffle three times at a Downing Street press conference. 

There is intense speculation that both Education Secretary Gavin Williamson and Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab could be moved.

Mr Williamson is heavily tipped for a move to a more low-profile role, while Conservative Party chairman Amanda Milling is thought to be up for the sack.

There is also speculation that Mr Raab could be moved following controversy over his handling of the crisis in Afghanistan. 

Mr Johnson refused to rule out a snap reshuffle three times and it is speculated that Education Secretary Gavin Williamson and Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab (pictured) could be moved

One option could be a job swap with Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove who has been agitating for a move since the completion of his work on Brexit.

In the Commons debate yesterday, South Dorset MP Richard Drax was the only Tory to directly challenge the PM over the tax rise, telling him: ‘The Conservative way to raise revenue is to lower taxes, not raise them… As Conservatives, broken pledges and tax rises should concern us.’

The PM said he agreed with the ‘general proposition’ but warned that the pandemic had left the Government with no other choice. 

Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves condemned the national insurance rise as a ‘jobs tax’ and suggested Labour would vote against it.

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