07 December 2023

‘Tory crisis’ – Papers react to Robert Jenrick stepping down over Rwanda policy

07 December 2023

Several papers believe Robert Jenrick’s resignation as immigration minister over Rishi Sunak’s Rwanda policy will only serve to bolster Labour’s election chances.

On Wednesday, Mr Jenrick told the Prime Minister that his draft Bill aimed at stopping small boat crossings “does not go far enough” and is a “triumph of hope over experience”.

Mr Sunak’s long-term political ally argued that he had to quit because he has “such strong disagreements” with his approach to immigration.

Here is how the nation’s papers reacted to Mr Jenrick’s resignation:

The Daily Mail takes a swipe at Mr Jenrick’s actions, as well as the wider Conservative party, questioning how MPs do not “understand how sick the public are of their endless self-indulgent posturing?”

The paper says: “The only person their histrionics help is Keir Starmer, the ocean-going dud who too many Tory MPs seem hellbent on making look statesman-like and electable.”

As for those Tories who think they have the luxury of some new rebellion, they’re hammering nails in their own party’s coffin

In an editorial, the Daily Express says Mr Jenrick’s departure will “embolden Mr Sunak’s critics within the party who also, of course, include former home secretary Suella Braverman”.

The paper adds that it is “essential to make it clear that people who come here illegally will not be allowed to stay, which is what the Rwanda plan should achieve”.

“We can only hope that his critics are proved wrong and the new legislation is sufficient to the task,” the Express concludes.

Editorial comment from the Daily Telegraph argues Mr Jenrick’s departure has created a “Tory crisis”.

The paper says: “This has become a high-stakes political gamble for Mr Sunak, whose ability to manage the parliamentary party with so many MPs stepping down has become more difficult.”

And The Sun says Mr Sunak has “walked a tightrope drafting a radical new law to make the Rwanda deal a reality”, but warns: “Stand by for a bloodbath in Parliament. Labour loathe the Bill.

“They like open borders and detest deterrents. But a deterrent is what’s needed.

“As for those Tories who think they have the luxury of some new rebellion, they’re hammering nails in their own party’s coffin.”

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