Theresa May 'could be out by New Year' as number of Tory rebels submitting no-confidence letters grows

Two more MPs have come forward to announce they've put in a letter calling for Mrs May to go as Brexit chaos rages.

The PM's enemies want to pounce while she is weak and hold a vote of no confidence as soon as possible.

Senior Tory members claim that if Mrs May is forced out, a leadership election to replace her could be over and done with in just three weeks.

If 48 of her MPs request a leadership election, backbench boss Graham Brady must hold one within days.

Last night ex-minister Crispin Blunt revealed for the first time that he has put in a letter to Sir Graham.

He told The Times: "I want to encourage those who are thinking about it – get it done."

Northampton South MP Andrew Lewer has also sent a letter requesting a vote of no confidence.

Iain Duncan Smith, who as an ex-leader has so far been loyal to Mrs May, hinted he is close to sending in a letter.

He told talkRADIO: "I have made it clear before now that I would not get involved in that… but now everything is on the table."

Leading Brexiteers Jacob Rees-Mogg and Steve Baker called on fellow MPs to join the campaign against their leader.

Mr Baker said: "If we can't go forward with her deal, then I'm afraid the only way to change the policy is to change the Prime Minister."

He tipped Boris Johnson, David Davis, Dominic Raab and Esther McVey as possible replacements – adding: "The four of them need to work out between them which one of them will be our candidate to unite the country, unite the party and take us out of the EU."

Mr Rees-Mogg said Mrs May had a "duty to step aside" and suggested he would back Boris in a leadership election.

More than 40 MPs have publicly or privately said they've sent a letter in already.

But Sir Graham – the only man who knows how many letters there are – hinted there may still be some way to go before the crucial threshold of 48 is reached.

He said: "Lots of people have predicted the Prime Minister’s downfall, they have been wrong when they have done so."

If a vote of confidence takes place and the PM wins, she is safe for another year.

But if she loses, a leadership election is triggered and she is barred from standing.

Tory MPs vote on the contenders until they narow the field down to two, then party members make the final choice.

Previous Tory leadership votes have taken several months – but one senior Tory claimed it could be done within three weeks if necessary.

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