Rishi Sunak looks set for another fight with his MPs as a growing number of rebels join Boris Johnson and Liz Truss in trying to force him to overturn a ban on new onshore wind farms.
Former party boss Sir Jake Perry added his name on Sunday to the list of MPs backing the bid, while it is also understood that Raising Secretary Michael Gove wants the ban to end.
Sunak reversed a move by his predecessor Les Truss to relax rules on onshore wind, saying he wanted to prioritize building offshore turbines instead.
Simon Clarke, a cabinet minister under Ms Truss, introduced an amendment to the Settlement and Renewal Bill asking for current comment on a new bill Onshore wind farm raise developments.
Former prime ministers Ms Truss and Johnson are among more than 20 Conservatives backing the pro-wind legislation, as is Alok Sharma, who was chair of the COP26 climate summit.
Eliot Colburn and former ministers Robert Curtis and Kevin Foster will also add their signatures to the amendment, the PNA news agency was told.
Along with private supporters, a rebel source said 30 Tories are behind Mr Clarke’s bid – coming close to eroding Mr Sunak’s Labor majority of 69 votes if other opposition groups join Labor in voting to overturn the ban.
Sir Jake said Mr Gove’s divergent opinion “sermons a real danger to my government”, suggesting that it is “the first crack in the wall” of discipline for Sunak.
“Boris Johnson famously called wind turbines the devilish white windmills of northern England when they were building them all over my constituency,” he told the BBC’s Sunday with Laura Kuensberg programme.
“He has changed his mind about them; I have greatly changed my mind, and I will support Simon Clarke.”
The former minister, who was knighted by Mr Johnson, has argued that higher energy bills are the main reason for the increase in investment in renewables.
Mr Johnson did not seek to rescind the de facto moratorium on new onshore wind projects, in place since 2015, during his tenure at No. 10.
Demands to rethink policy have increased since Russia invaded Ukraine, but other conservatives oppose wind farms, with government minister Grant Shapps. They previously described them as “eye sores”.
Goff, as the settlement secretary responsible for planning policy, has spoken out about the need for more onshore wind power.
A source close to him said, “We will work constructively with colleagues, as we do with all amendments.”
Labor has said it plans to support the Clark Amendment to pile pressure on Sunak, although the party believes it “swaps the ban with what remains a very restrictive planning regime on onshore winds”.
Shadow climate change minister Ed Miliband said: “Wild wind is the cheapest and cleanest energy we have. Tory bans have kept bills high and hurt our energy security. Rishi Sunak’s vulnerability means he has to be dragged to abolish it by his back benches. He must swallow his pride and turn now.” “.
The mutiny causes more trouble for Mr. Sunak and the Tories.
this week, The prime minister was forced to withdraw the vote on the legislation This would set a target of 300,000 homes being built annually when some 50 Tories threatened to revolt.
Writing in The Sunday Times, senior Conservative MP Sajid Javid attacked the rebels, saying: “To destroy the existing planning system and to fail to build anything credible to replace it would be an abject failure of political leadership”.
Meanwhile, Sunak is seeing a steady stream of Conservative MPs – many of whom are relatively young and believed to have bright careers ahead – announcing their exit plans.
net caesar, chris skidmore, She became the ninth to say that they will not run in the next electionafter a move by Minister Dina Davison’s settlement.
Speaking to Sky’s Sophie Ridge on Sunday, Transport Secretary Mark Harper insisted they are locating now because the Conservatives have been given until December 5 to make a decision due to the constituency boundary review.
“You’ll see those all grouped together, so I don’t think there’s anything special to write home about.”
The departures come amid growing concerns about the party’s performance in opinion polls.
An Ipsos poll earlier this week showed the Conservative Party’s approval ratings having fallen to 26%, its lowest score in 15 years.
On the terrible polls the Conservatives are struggling to recover, Harper said: “If we’re realistic about it, we’re not going to change things overnight.”