Tory MPs are worried about retaining seats after a double defeat in the by-elections.

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Defending MPs said it would be “undoubtedly” difficult to retain their seats in the next general election after a double defeat in the by-elections.

The party lost its strongholds of Tiverton and Honiton to the Liberal Democrats and handed over Wakefield to Labor in Thursday night’s by-elections.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson acknowledged that the results were “severe” but vowed to “continue” – another blow to his authority despite the losses.

Conservative party co-chairman Oliver Dowden, meanwhile, resigned, saying he and Tory supporters were “upset and frustrated” by recent events, telling Mr Johnson: “Someone has to take responsibility.”

Letter to Boris Johnson following Oliver Dowden’s resignation as Conservative Party Chairman (Oliver Dowden / PA) / PA Media

Tory MPs are now voicing their concerns about being able to retain Conservative seats.

Tory Grandeur Sir Jeffrey Clifton Brown said there was no doubt that it would be difficult to hold his seat if by-elections were held in his constituency now.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today program, Cutts Wolds MP and 1922 committee treasurer said: “I think, in fact, it would be difficult to handle my seat if I ran under the bus today. . There is no doubt about it.

“I am very sorry for all my volunteers, and really for my colleagues, and really for myself, who worked so hard in these by-elections, but we were just defeated by the situation we are in at the moment. “

Conservative MP Jesse Norman, who wrote to Mr Johnson in early June saying he was withdrawing his support because of the party gate scandal and his government’s lack of a “sense of mission”, questioned his impact on voters. Reiterated his concerns.

Mr Norman tweeted an excerpt from the letter on Friday morning, saying: “To prolong this statement for you is an insult not only to the voters, but also to those who support, volunteer, represent and campaign for our party.” This is likely to lead to a decisive change of government in the next election.

“It’s potentially devastating for this country.”

Tory peer Lord Barwell, meanwhile, said Tiverton and Honiton’s results were “disastrous” for the Conservatives and that other seats in the South were “dangerous”.

He told Sky News: “It’s one of the safest Conservative seats in the country. It’s a strong support for quitting.

“So, for the Liberal Democrats to win there, and win comfortably, it means that a large part of the seats in the south of the country are weak.”

Sir Robert Buckland said he had told Mr Johnson he needed to “look in the mirror and improve” as he told Sky News that the Conservative Party was “about more than one man”.

I think, in fact, if I run under a bus today, it will be difficult to handle my seat.

The former Lord Chancellor admitted that it was “disappointing” for people on the party’s sidelines to see a “lack of attention” from the government, but refrained from demanding the resignation of the prime minister, saying he Not sure if “throwing the captain now” would be the right answer.

“For those of us who are frustrated now, if you want, what is lacking in attention and there is a real sense of a coherent message of what the government is doing and what it needs to do,” he said. ۔ “

“The Conservative Party is a broad coalition of people with different views across politics at the center. We need to reflect much better – we are not a sect, we are trying to overthrow the state. There are no famous tribes.

The by-elections, which began with the resignation of Zalil Tories, gave voters a chance to decide on the prime minister, with 41% of their MPs voting against him.

In the rural Devon constituency of Tiverton and Honiton, the Liberal Democrats reversed a 24,000 Tory majority to win, while Labor reclaimed Wakefield.

Speaking to Rwandan broadcasters on Friday morning, Mr Johnson sought to avoid a by-election defeat over his leadership.

He said: “I think governments also have to admit that I don’t want to downplay the voters, but it’s also true that in the medium term, post-war governments lose. Elections

“I think, if you look at last May, it was really amazing that we managed to win the Hartle Pool in so many different situations.”

Mr Johnson said the country was under pressure to make ends meet, adding: “We have to recognize that we have a lot more to do and we will definitely do it. We will continue to address the concerns until we get through this patch.