Tory MPs appear to be divided over the future of Liz Truss as prime minister following her major U-turn announcement.
Heated messages were shared in Conservative Party WhatsApp groups after Ms Truss’s hastily-arranged a Downing Street press conference.
In a screenshot sent to Sky News’ deputy political editor Sam Coates, Crispin Blunt called for Rishi Sunak and Penny Mordaunt to take over.
“Step forward Rishi and Penny, with our support and encouragement in the interests of us all.”
Nadine Dorries replied to say: “Followed by a general election? I love you Crispin but if you seriously think we can impose another leader without one, that media and the people would allow that, you need to lie down.
“You may as well embrace dictatorship [because] it’s the most un democratic [sic] proposal imaginable.”
Meanwhile, Robert Simms appeared uncomfortable with the plan to hold the next financial statement on 31 – Halloween.
“Witches outfits smoke and mirrors,” messages on the group said. “Nightmare on Downing Street. In short… cannot be Halloween.”
During her press conference Ms Truss indicated she was determined to remain as prime minister and had “acted decisively” in the national interest.
“I am determined to see through what I’ve promised – deliver higher growth, a more prosperous United Kingdom,” she insisted.
“I have to act in the national interest as prime minister.”
Asked whether she should resign at her press conference, Ms Truss said: “I am absolutely determined to see through what I have promised.”
The prime minister appointed former foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt as the new chancellor.
The Treasury said Mr Hunt would deliver the medium-term fiscal plan on 31 October.