Sacking Suella Braverman means “suicide” for the Tory party and Rishi Sunak has just “thrown the election away” according to leaked WhatsApp messages between members of a grassroots Conservative organisation leaked to Sky News.
Members of the Conservative Democratic Organisation (CDO), a momentum-style group created out of frustration at the ousting of Boris Johnson and Liz Truss and backed by Priti Patel, called on Tory MPs to submit letters of no confidence in Rishi Sunak after Monday’s reshuffle.
Conversations between CDO members on Monday reveal they believe “Sunak has committed political suicide” and “the cabinet is pretty much the exact opposite of what we voted for in 2019” while another asks “is it April Fool’s day???”
The CDO, whose president is Lord Peter Cruddas, aims to change the rules of the Tory party to give the membership a bigger voice in its running.
Sky News has seen messages from regional WhatsApp groups where CDO members give their views on the reshuffle. Many, but not all, are Conservative members, and almost none are nationally recognisable figures so are not being named by Sky News.
These views are not representative, therefore, of the whole Tory membership, but represent a slice of Conservative thinking inside and outside the party. It chimes with some Tory MPs on the right who believe the reshuffle will bolster Reform UK, the right-wing party created from the Brexit Party.
In the South East CDO group, one contributor calls the appointment of David Cameron a “very weak decision”, another calls it the “undoing of the party” and a third says “FFS”.
One says “the only good news would be if Kemi [Badenoch, business secretary] replaces [Chancellor Jeremy] Hunt but I can’t see it”.
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Some in relation to Cameron refer to conspiracy theories about an elite in Davos controlling the world.
“His biggest regret was Brexit, even though he was always a eurosceptic. Why? Because it robbed him of post PM £s on the Davos circuit. He’s back to redeem himself under Davos darling Nutsak”. “Nutsak” is an occasional nickname for Sunak in this group.
“I’ve not been this angry since Boris was forced out”, says one.
In the same group, they respond to the sacking of Ms Braverman as home secretary with dismay.
“I call on Conservative MPs to submit their VoNC [vote of no confidence] letters to the 1922 [Committee]. Rishi Sunak & his out-of-touch squad, must be outed from No10,” said one. Later that day, Tory MP Andrea Jenkyns did submit such a letter.
“Is Suella a member of the CDO?” asks one. “How can we help her and thereby help ourselves and our country? I am really unhappy about this… Let’s push for letters to go in.”
Richard Holden’s appointment as party chairman is also the source of dismay because he is seen as close to Mr Sunak.
“Apparently an ex CCHQ staffer, otherwise known as a full commitment to the lunatics taking over the asylum,” one said.
Read the full exchanges below.
CDO SOUTH EAST[08:39] Activist 1: Reshuffle starting now… [08:40] Activist 1: Suella has just been sacked. The end of the Conservative party [08:40] Activist 2: Harry Cole was reporting that it was expected because of the vague agenda for today. [08:42] Activist 2: Let’s hope it’s the beginning of the end for Sunak [08:4?] Activist 2: He’s now jumping to the bark of Labour [08:45] Activist 3: If Suella has been sacked, then he should go. Is Suella a member of CDO? How can we help her and thereby help ourselves and our country? I am really unhappy about this. [08:46] Activist 2: Now it’s time for the backbenchers to put up. [08:46] Activist 3: Let’s push for the letters to go in. [08:46] Activist 4: He is demonstrating he is a follower not a leader. [08:47] Activist 2: It’s so weak. Even if he wanted to sack her he shouldn’t indulge in the left [08:47] Activist 3: An unelected one at that. Disgraceful. [08:47] Activist 5: Suella has been sacked – it’s on the news websites now. [08:50] Activist 6: I call on Conservatives Mp’s to submit their VoNC letters to the 1922. Rishi Sunak & his out-of-touch squad, must be ousted from NO.10. To those few are still members, please write your Association(s). #Ready4Rishi2Go [08:58] Activist 7: Sunak & he party is sunk. They’ve backed the wrong horse(s) [08:59] Activist 2: Cleverly as HS [09:00] Activist 8 : Not sure what he was thinking, she can do more damage to him on the backbenches! Thanks for that was about to write to Cleverly about a matter abroad!
CDO SOUTH WEST[08:41] Activist 1: Suella has been sacked [08:41] Activist 2: What an idiot! [08:42] Activist 3: Activist Sunak got to go [08:42] Activist 4: Well on the bright side Suella is free now to replace him when the time comes… [08:43] Activist 5: It’s nothing like the party I joined in the 1970’s when we had a clear vision and direction. My MP doesn’t share many of my Conservative principles sadly like many of his colleagues. [08:43] Activist 6: I think this trigger for letters to go in [08:51] Activist 6: Tell your MP’s! [08:54] Activist 5: Just sent an email to my MP [08:57] Activist 6: Great yes pile on everyone [10:13] Activist 2: There are no pliable MPs left for Sunak and his squad to call upon. What an utter clown show. What now Activist 6? [10:15] Activist 6: Now letters must go in and Sunak replaced urgently. We could have a leadership election in 3 weeks including limited hustings and members vote. [10:16] Activist 7: Do you think there are enough MPs with a backbone to do it though?
CDO LONDON[07:08] Activist 1: The current Tory government
Rishi Sunak: Stabbed the one person who gave him a top job, rejected by us, done nothing in the year he’s been the cuckoo prime minister, rejected by the people according to the pills.
Hunt: Rejected by us 4 times and disliked by the people according to the polls.
Cameron: Didn’t like the result of a democracy so ran away and let down his constituency by resigning. Got caught being a naughty man.
Did I miss anything? :/[08:42] Activist 2: He’s sacked Suella! He’s on a suicide mission for the party! [08:43] Activist 3: Sunak has committed political suicide
That being said, I’m sure this is a positive step towards a Bravermen leadership.[08:45] Activist 4: Time for the letters to go in! Let’s see what mess is made of reshuffle too. [08:49] Activist 2: I’m furious. [08:49] Activist 2: He is no Politician. He doesn’t understand that the Tory faithful are pretty much only still faithful because of Suella. [08:52] Activist 2: I’m a party member, I’ve always voted Tory. I’m active in the local association and I am really struggling with the idea of voting for them at the next GE. Sorry, but they need a kicking. [08:52] Activist 3: I would be furious if I wasn’t rather excited to watch Sunak’s unravelling and a (potential) leadership bid by Suella.
Rishi has signed his political death warrant, and Suella will be back – so the situation is bittersweet.[09:50] Activist 5: This is just awful. [09:50] Activist 5: Sunak is not even a Tory [09:50] Activist 5: MPs: Get him out NOW! [09:50] Activist 2: I’m so angry I can’t focus on work. [10:13] Activist 6: I feel the same, I’m furious. Just watched the idiots on GB News saying Suella was out of control. She was the first minister in years I actually felt was a real Conservative with genuine Conservative values. I hope she runs for leadership and kicks Sunak to touch. [10:19] Activist 2: This cabinet is pretty much the exact opposite of what we voted for in 2019. [10:44] Activist 7: If she does and gets voted in overwhelmingly by the membership, the snakes will oust her, ignore us all and install another puppet! [10:45] Activist 8: It’s 10:45.
What’s the delay in those letters to Sir Graham? There’s not a postal strike is there?[10:45] Activist 9: Exactly, as we are unfortunately accustomed to. [13:15] Activist 10: I see the ‘one nation’ tories are full of glee today. [13:34] Activist 11: They won’t be after next year’s general election results. [13:36] Activist 11: Although saying that, they might actually be gleeful, since they seem so hellbent on causing as much reputational damage to the party as possible.
CDO YORKSHIRE & HUMBER[10:12] Activist 1: I can’t believe it. Suella sacked and Cameron in as foreign secretary! [10:13] Activist 1: Is it April fools day???? [10:14] Activist 2: Incredible – has just thrown the election away! I bet Starmer sends him a crate of champagne to thank him! We need to get off our bums and write in and voice our anger. [11:08] Activist 3: I wonder who made him sack her? Dr. No or another member of the cabal really running the country? Looks like time to quit the party for me. [11.10] Activist 4: Stay as a member. You will have more influence in the future. [11:10] Activist 5: It’s not our party anymore… It hasn’t been for a while. [11:10] Activist 3: Exactly true! [11:16] Activist 6: I’m not quitting. I want the satisfaction of being involved in rebuilding once these people have moved on. Unfortunately unless the backbenchers grow a pair we are going to have to go a few years of socialism in order to move them on . [11:18] Activist 7: A few years? We’ll never get into power again… Votes will be opened up to 16 year olds, non-British nationals too.. We’ll then have another referendum and be back under the globalists boot. Democracy will be dead, and this party with its blatant corruption, enabled it. [11:39] Activist 8:v I heard they’re going to change the membership vote for PM, just in case we have the audacity of not choosing the right person. It breaks my heart to say this, but the conservative party, that I’ve supported for years, is well and truly finished. A vote for this shower is a wasted vote. [11:43] Activist 9: Will Cameron become leader? [13:24] Activist 9: Hague orchestrated Cameron. It’s to stop a Boris or Farage come back. [13:26] Activist 9: We need to split. [13:38] Activist 9: Right wing members of 2 groups meeting this afternoon. Let’s see the letters but i think we need a breakaway.