There are stories of an imminent leadership challenge, but senior Tories have dismissed the notion, and there is no obvious successor.
Theresa May will face parliament this week reasonably confident that speculation about an imminent leadership challenge remains unfounded, but knowing that her long-term credibility with her party has been damaged beyond repair.
The concept of a “worst week ever” is something of a cliche for political leaders, but few have seen their stock plummet so quickly as May’s did in the period between Friday 9 June, when she realised her early election gamble had backfired, and the following Friday when crowds, angry at her supposedly unsympathetic response to the Grenfell Tower tragedy, yelled “coward” at her as she was driven away from a meeting with victims encircled by police for her protection.
The newspapers over the weekend carried stories saying that May is facing a “stalking horse” leadership challenge, or that she has been given just “10 days to save her premiership”.
But the idea that May is facing an imminent leadership challenge is being dismissed as hyperbole by senior Tories. One MP who would expect to be aware of a plot if there was one said he was “mystified” by the reports and No 10 does not believe that a coup is imminent.