Boris Johnson could encounter the biggest revolt of his premiership so far, with 60 Tory MPs said to be planning to vote against the imposition of additional coronavirus criteria.
The Prime Minister revealed he would be starting his winter Plan B protocols in a bid to buy the United Kingdom time in the fight against the Omicron variant of the virus.
The Tories have responded with disappointment to the proposals, with tens of backbenchers promising to vote down plans for vaccine passports to be made mandatory for large venues.
The introduction of COVID passes will mean those who haven’t been completely vaccinated will not be able to enter indoor venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people and any venue with more than 10,000 people from Wednesday.
The Plan B measures also include compulsory mask-wearing in most public indoor settings, as well as guidance for workers to operate from home where they can in order to prevent transmission.
Former Cabinet ministers David Davis, Esther McVey, Dr Liam Fox and Greg Clark are among those to have expressed concerns about the scaling up of restrictions.
Greg Clark, a former business secretary, said the Government had jumped the gun in deciding to act before more was known about the effect Omicron could have on hospital admissions.
Former trade secretary Dr Liam Fox, speaking in a debate in the Commons, said it was hard to justify those additional measures.
Senior Conservatives, including select committee chairman Tobias Ellwood and William Wragg, have spoken in opposition to the measures while 2019 intake MPs such as Dehenna Davison and Lee Anderson, who represent so-called former Labour red wall constituencies, have announced they would revolt on Tuesday’s vote in the House of Commons.
Former defence minister Mr Ellwood, who chairs the Defence Committee, told Sky News on Saturday: ‘I’d strongly urge the Government to drop the vote on vaccination passports next week.
He said it’s not the appropriate tactic to impose on a very exhausted country at this time.
According to a newspaper outlet, former Brexit minister Steve Baker told MPs in the COVID Recovery Group (CRG), a group of anti lockdown Tories, WhatsApp chat that ministerial resignations were likely during the restrictions row.
Steve Baker, a well-known figure in the COVID Recovery Group of Conservatives, said that he wasn’t expecting to be lonely when he votes against Plan B but that they do need MPs to vote against, not abstain.
However, most rebels will take the coward’s way out and abstain. If they don’t have the guts to stand up for their beliefs, then they should get out of politics.
The entire thing is a theatre. These people don’t represent us because it’s a global script from higher up, and there are no morals, logic, and civil rights means nothing anymore.
And it’s not just about standing up for their beliefs, it’s about standing up for the wishes of their constituents, but unfortunately, this Government and the MPs no longer represent their constituents and we’re being denied our rights to freedom and choice.
All they want is harder, longer lockdowns and restrictions. There’s no opposition anymore because it’s all bought and paid for.
Boris Johnson has already lost the next election and he knows it. He will go down with the sinking ship instead of giving out the orders to lower the lifeboats, and just in case nobody has noticed there have been quite a few lawbreakers in Government, and we have MPs partying at the height of the pandemic while common folk say goodbye to their elderly relatives behind a panel of glass.
Then there are those MPs who have been having affairs while everyone else had to keep two metres apart and weren’t allowed household mixing. People driving from London to Scotland to visit family. Worst of all, we all had to endure the sight of Michael Gove dancing in a nightclub, and when politicians are no longers being held to account to the same standards of common folk, then we’re already being ruled by criminals.