Lord Peter Cruddas gives a speech during the Conservative Democratic Organisation conference at Bournemouth International Centre. Picture date: Saturday May 13, 2023. (Photo by Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images)
A close ally of Boris Johnson has said if Labour wins a majority at the next election the Conservatives will never be able to govern alone again.
Speaking at a conference for the party’s grassroots on Saturday, Lord Peter Cruddas warned Tory members they could be about to lose power forever.
“If Labour wins a big majority at the next election they will reduce the voting age to 16, they will abolish voter ID, and they will introduce proportional representation making it almost impossible for the Conservative Party to win an outright majority in the future,” he said.
“We will become a country of coalition governments and outright governments will be a thing of the past.”
Keir Starmer looks to be on course to win the next election, but Labour might fall short of a majority.
Labour could choose to ask the Lib Dems to support them in government, with Ed Davey’s party likely to demand electoral reform as the price of cooperation.
Cruddas was addressing the Conservative Democratic Organisation (CDO) in Bournemouth, a group set up by supporters of Johnson.
It wants to give party members more power and is critical of the way Rishi Sunak was appointed leader.
The prime minister was appointed Tory leader and PM automatically after rival Penny Mordant failed to make it onto the ballot and Johnson abandoned a comeback bid. It meant party members were not given a vote.
Cruddas complained the Conservatives under Sunak were “being moved to be a centre-left party or social democratic party”.
And he hit out at the “shameful” actions of Tory MPs who brought down Johnson.
“This was done undemocratically with systematic resignations, collusion, secret meetings and plotting behind the back of our elected leader,” he said.
Priti Patel also used a speech at the conference to attack Sunak for overseeing the “managed decline” of the Tories.
But Grant Shapps, the energy secretary, insisted on Sunday the government was still “buzzing” with ideas.