The former prime minister faced two no-confidence votes during her tenure
However, this is not the first time that belief in a has been lost prime minister and party leaders and a vote of no confidence has taken place.
Johnson’s predecessor Teresa May also faced the same vote when she was in office.
So when did Theresa May face a vote of no confidence, what exactly is a vote of no confidence and what was the outcome of the vote?
Here’s what you need to know.
Who is Theresa May and when was she Prime Minister?
Theresa May has been Member of Parliament for Maidenhead in Berkshire since 1997.
She was appointed Home Secretary by then Prime Minister David Cameron in 2010, a post she held until 2016.
Theresa May’s term as Prime Minister ran from July 13, 2016 to July 24, 2019. It began and ended with Brexit.
In July 2016, David Cameron resigned following the referendum on European Union (EU) membership and Theresa May accepted Queen Elizabeth II’s invitation to form a new government.
She became Britain’s second female prime minister after Margaret Thatcher and was the first and only woman to hold two major offices of state.
May decided to resign in July 2019 as she could not find a way for the UK to leave the EU, which Parliament supported.
She remains as a backbencher in the House of Commons.
What is a vote of no confidence?
A no-confidence vote is the most direct challenge to a prime minister’s leadership and can be triggered by MPs from any party.
The vote gives MPs a chance to decide whether to continue the current government and the outcome may trigger a general election and could lead to the appointment of a new prime minister.
If a vote of no confidence is carried out, it is done by secret ballot.
Any MP can table a motion of no confidence, but there is no guarantee that his or her motion will be granted.
The vote requires a majority to pass, and only one more MP needs to vote in favor than the number voting against.
If the government wins the motion of no confidence, it will carry on as before.
If the government loses, it has 14 days to win back MPs’ confidence by voting again, while opposition parties can attempt to form their own alternative government.
If the government cannot regain confidence, new elections will be triggered.
However, when an alternative government is evident, the Convention proposes that the Prime Minister should resign.
How many votes of no confidence did Theresa May get?
Theresa May has had two no-confidence votes during her tenure; one from their own party in December 2018 and one from the opposition in January 2019.
Why was the first vote of no confidence passed against Theresa May?
In December 2018, May postponed the UK Parliament vote on her Brexit deal for fear of rejection.
Her decision to postpone that vote caused enough Tory MPs to brush her aside.
The secret ballot was prompted by 48 of their MPs who were angered by their Brexit policy, which they say betrayed the outcome of the 2016 referendum.
May won the vote of confidence in her Conservative Party leadership by a vote of 200 to 117.
Why was the second vote of no confidence passed against Theresa May?
Just a month after the first no-confidence vote against Theresa May was tabled in January 2019, another was called against then-Labor Party leader and opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn.
This comes after the government lost a vote in the House of Commons by 230 votes on the evening of January 15 to secure parliamentary support for the government’s deal on Britain’s exit from the European Union.
In that vote, 432 MPs voted against 202 against rejecting the deal and represented one of the biggest defeats for an incumbent government.
This second no-confidence vote was debated on the afternoon of January 16 before being voted on in the evening.
The motion was defeated by a vote of 325 to 306; a majority of 19.
Corbyn had previously attempted to call a no-confidence vote in December 2018, just a week after the result of the first no-confidence vote, because May had refused to schedule a meaningful vote on her Brexit deal before Christmas 2018.
However, the government refused to give time to consider the request at this time.
How many British Prime Ministers have been lost to a no-confidence vote?
A total of 11 prime ministers have lost a no-confidence vote.
- Lord North (1782)
- John Russell, 1st Earl Russell (1866)
- Benjamin Disraeli (1868)
- William Ewart Gladstone (1885)
- Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury (1886)
- William Ewart Gladstone (1886)
- Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury (1892)
- Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery (1895)
- Stanley Baldwin (January 1924)
- Ramsay MacDonald (October 1924)
- James Callaghan (1979)
The period between the 1924 vote of no confidence and the 1979 motion was the longest in the history of the British Parliament.